Autotune has given voice distortion such a bad name. The concept used to be a hot topic of common frustration, but your T-Pains and Kanyes of the world have made electronically altered voices an afterthought in today’s musical ecosystem. But therein lies the problem with voice alteration: skeptics immediately flock to the assumption that all vocal production changes can be attributed to the numbing concept of autotuning. The reality is that autotuning shouldn’t put a damper on the availability of 21st century possibilities within manufactured sound.
On their debut 2012 album “Mondo”, Electric Guest embraces the value of change through that very same refined studio development. Despite the clear and uninhibited piano keys, lead singer Asa Taccone and his supporting percussion have revamped their sound to appear muffled, as if to echo the production value found in a mid-20th century recording studio. Audiophiles have rejoiced not only in their reaction to Electric Guest’s interesting approach to a modern hip-shaker, but in the band’s progression to a more natural sound. Their first single in 6 years “Dear to Me” was released a few months ago, and it surprised fans by replacing their foundationally softened vocals found in “Mondo” with a prouder, practiced, and lucid resonance. Don’t assume I’m plugging this new single for nothing, as it will more than likely feature on my upcoming “Best of 2016: Q4” playlist. Stay tuned!