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Experimental music is often a difficult sell - it doesn't matter what ingenuity gave birth to the sounds and structures contained on a record if listeners are unable, or indeed unwilling, to engage with it. Of course, this isn't to say that artists should "dumb down" their work to appeal to the masses, but offering a route in for a listener who might not come to the album with prior knowledge of its recording process and purpose, will encourage them to start scratching away at the surface. Before you know it they'll be peeling away layers of meaning one by one in an attempt to reach the core of the artist's intentions. Despite what many will tell you, listeners today want to hear exciting, forward thinking music.

Platform is a record that reveals itself slowly. An intelligent, intoxicating electronica record that draws the listener in and revealing new truths as it goes. On the surface it's an often thrilling electronic record mining the sound of techno and trance - amongst other styles. But as you journey further to the core of Platform what you find is an album that's very much about our relationship with the digital world and how that emboldens us, but also endangers us.

Two tracks best exemplify this balance between two opposing states - 'Chorus' and 'Home'. The former track is an almost euphoric cataclysm of chopped vocal loops, rushing synths and deep, punchy percussion. Herndon's vocals, which seem to swarm and soar in equal measure, are almost like an aural time-lapse - vocals sped up so that whole words become unintelligible syllables. The beat, which clatters and pounds with gleeful abandon is the result of a program created by Herndon's husband Mat Dryhurst. Herdon's web browsing was monitored and the audio gathered was compressed and assembled into song's structural backbone - in the video for 'Chorus' this is hinted at in the opening moments by glimpses of various applications, a Skype chat, 3D modelling, tools that ping and chatter, hoping we'll pay attention to them. The video moves on to show 3D representations of environments where computers are used and the paraphernalia that surrounds them. Seemingly captured using photogrammetry, these scenes give a sense of the person being recorded, though aside from glimpses at the beginning and a 3D model of Herndon, the person who owns the computer is absent.

Due to the occasionally aggressive beats that punctuate the track, and the notion of monitoring someone's browsing, 'Chorus' does have an underling unease, but ultimately it feels more like a celebration - data collected here is converted into music, an environment, an expression or extension of self. 'Home' on the other hand laments when this data is used for the purposes of control and categorisation and is dedicated to the NSA. 'Home' takes Herndon's music into a nightmarish dystopia, tropes of cyberpunk and horror combining over a mournful backing of choral vocals and slow bass lines. "I can feel you in my room," Herndon whispers to introduce the track, the shadowy organisation that monitors the internet given corporeal form - the ghost glimpsed out of the corner of your eye. Herndon's vocals become entangled with running footsteps, smashing glass and other sounds from ordinary objects that are no longer familiar once the lights are out.

These electronic songs are almost impressionistic in their construction. Vocals and lyrics are regularly twisted into random phrases, words excised and inserted wherever the artist pleases; the voice another instrument, the electronics a storytelling device. Nowhere is this used to better effect than on the dizzying 'Locker Leak' which combines choral harmonies with quick-tempo, off kilter percussion and seemingly nonsensical vocals that bound around you, glimpsed but gone within seconds. The track's lyrics come from another of Herndon's collaborators - she views Platform as the work of a team of people - Spencer Longo who created tongue-twisting "word sculptures" that tumble over themselves. It's the aural equivalent of a wave of pop-ups throwing meaningless phrases that quickly blur into a homogeneous entity.

'Locker Leak' is easily the album's most playful moment - a post-modernist revision of Tom Wait's 'Step Right Up'. In contrast it's bookended by the album's two most introspective tracks, 'Morning Sun' and 'An Exit'. The latter track in particular takes inspiration from Suhail Malik who has written on the subject of the shortcomings of contemporary art and its need to enact an exit in order to have "substantial and credible traction on anything beyond or larger." The track's lyrics refer to this questioning of place and purpose, whilst the vocals are modulated between clear, unadorned voice, pitch-shifted in-human noises and double-tracked to sound like a choir. The music appropriately expands and contracts, at times focusing on a precise, muscular beat, before switching to a chaotic clatter, which passes through to euphoric synthesiser. There's a grandeur to the track which belies the soul-searching tone of the lyrics - it provides the sense that only by questioning the self can we transform.

Whilst Platform has its revelatory moments, it is not without complaint. 'Lonely At The Top', which eschews any musical backing, arrives awkwardly after 'An Exit' and stands at odds with the rest of the record due to the fact it relies heavily on a spoken word performance that is left without manipulation (aside from some panning). The track takes influence from the phenomenon of autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR), which is where a person gets a physical sensation from mundane, everyday sounds. This is evident from the background noises of rustling paper, tapping fingernails, keyboard keys and running water that provide background to Claire Tolan's vocal. Tolan, an artist who works with ASMR, whispers throughout the piece, which takes the form of an appointment of unspecified purpose, and her vocal, combined with the clarity of the domestic sounds around her make for an uncomfortable experience. Perhaps this is the point of 'Lonely At The Top', but the sound of cellophane being pulled off an item, strange crunching noises and rubbing sounds made my skin crawl. Nolan's vocals which seem to be stroking the ego of the listener only served to heighten this sensation. It all just encouraged me to find the skip button the moment that 'An Exit' ended so that I wouldn't have to sit through another four and a half minutes of disquieting sounds.

'Lonely At The Top' is just one track of ten, and it's likely that many people will have a completely different experience to me - ASMR is a rather personal and specific phenomenon, so what makes one person anxious, will induce bliss in another. Whilst the idea is an interesting one, the fact the track has the possibility to encourage such a negative response in the listener clouds the record's strengths. The first few times I listened to the record it was the one track that stood out and as such created a less than favourable impression of what is a fascinating, bold record. This isn't meant to dissuade you from seeking the record out, because Herndon's interrogation of our relationship with computers and the synthetic world deserves to heard and understood.

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