um.. return again with a weirdly sampled tune that just begs to be played on a proper system. Seriously folks.
I’ve been listening to um.. since they started, and I’ve loved their weird and outlandish style. But it wasn’t until I heard them play in a dingy underground (literally) club in Austin that I truly appreciated the style. The bass was massive and the sound encompassed everyone, and that’s really what um..’s music calls for.
So don’t be shy, turn your speakers all the way up for this banger.
And as with every new release, um.. presents a new act in their ongoing story of a battle against evil and labels. Read Act IV below, and follow the links to previous chapters if you need a refresher.
the protagonist’s journey: act IV
the light outside scorched their eyes as they left the dark back room of the Smokey Monsters & Nice Vapors e-cig shop. protagonist could barely see anything as his eyes twinged trying to readjust to their new environment. unable to take the time to acclimate, ally and he continued moving forward, although unsure of where they were headed. all protagonist knew was that he had to get away from those thugs chasing him down. just as his sight was coming back he heard a loud noise from behind, ‘thwap!’ before protagonist even had a chance to turn around he heard a large ‘thud’ and then spotted a behemoth of a man, standing over ally’s unconscious body, laughing. protagonist noticed there was nowhere for him to run. the guards had completely blocked off the slim alley way thwarting their escape. as he reluctantly lumbered towards the guard, ready to submit, he heard a quick ‘woosh’ followed by another loud ‘thwap!’ protagonist was knocked unconscious..
protagonist awoke in a shiny room decorated with platinum records all bearing the same egregious ’t’ logo from the notorious twirlin records. he scanned the room for signs of life only to see a single man sitting in front of a computer working in ableton. he saw the man’s fingers twitch almost like a conditioned compulsion as he copy and pasted full songs into new sessions only stopping to think of a new name and change a few notes in the melody. he called this one ‘natural disaster.’ as the producer exported the track and sent it off to mastering, protagonist heard a man’s voice screech, ‘ca ching!’ in approval from behind him. protagonist attempted to see who the excited voice from the other side of the room belonged to, but his restraints stopped him from turning around. upon noticing that protagonist had regained conciousness, the man from the back of the room started walking confidently towards protagonist’s line of sight. he recognized the man as the ceo of the infamous twirlin records, a label known for putting out regurgitated trash that all sounded incredibly uninspired and even more remarkably similar. the man put a cold, lifeless hand on protagonist’s shoulder.
“I have been watching you for quite a while now, protagonist,” he said, “ you’re a very talented producer. I think with the right guidance, from me of course, you could be successful in no time.”
protagonist couldn’t help but feel a sickness growing in his stomach at the idea of working with twirlin. as protagonist started to formulate a response in his head, the ceo cut off his train of thought suddenly by saying,
“I know you aren’t the only one this decision effects, though. why don’t we bring in your friend and see what he thinks.”
at that moment the door in front of protagonist opened and he saw ally being dragged in by the back of a chair that he was tied down to. ally looked more frightened than protagonist had ever seen him and he couldn’t help but feel somewhat responsible. the ceo continued effortlessly,
“all I’m asking is that you go back to your normal lives. before all of this ridiculous ‘save the kingdom’ nonsense began.” he said revealing his knowledge of their plans, ”you never asked for any of this, and between us, I think we both know that you don’t really have any clue as to what you’re supposed to be doing.”
protagonist knew there was some truth to what the ceo was saying, he really didn’t know what he was meant to do and he didn’t think he was the right person to be trusted with such responsibility. still though, there was something inside of him that irked him to move forward. the ceo could see the conflict storming in protagonist’s eyes and in an attempt to keep him on his heels, the ceo shoved a contract in protagonist’s face.
“as you can see here, all you have to do is give up on this ludicrous quest that you’ve been forced into and promise not to speak of anything that you’ve seen or heard since all this began. you will not be able to speak to any one of your new companions or seek out more information regarding this adventure. in exchange you will have the opportunity of a lifetime in being signed by us here at twirlin! as I’m sure you already know, all of our artists go on to be outrageously rich, famous & irresistible to the common people,” he finished with unbelievably pompous tenacity.
protagonist looked to ally for any sign of direction, as he felt more lost than he had ever felt before. ally gave him a defeated shrug and looked back to the freshly polished floor only to see his reflection staring back at him. protagonist noticed a singular tear fall and splash beneath ally’s sullenly hung head. protagonist was instantly flooded with memories of being back at home. his life was so much simpler just yesterday, he couldn’t help but dread his newfound responsibilities. he wished for nothing more than to wake up and be back at his house making beats. that seemed like a different life at this point.. protagonist knew that he couldn’t concede to these temptations, everything in his heart told him to emphatically refuse, but where would they go from there? protagonist thought on the matter a little while longer and then defiantly said,“no.” just then a loud bang followed by dark black smoke flooded the room and he felt his restraints being untied. before he had time to understand what was happening, he felt a confident hand tugging at his arm and a soft voice told him to follow. he grabbed onto ally and pulled him along, unsure of where they were headed yet again. he didn’t care though, all he wanted was to leave this place. sooner than he expected, they were outside and being pulled along by a hooded figure urging them to keep moving..