When I profiled Gatekeeper in 2009 they were living in Chicago and making tracks heavily indebted to filmmaker John Carpenter, who writes and performs scores for his movies that have had an unexpectedly serious influence on modern electronic music. The pair have since moved to Brooklyn and developed a considerably more polished style. Gone are the lo-res synthesizers, glitchy samplers, and dark atmospheres, replaced by big rave sounds and a gleaming, technophilic vision of the future buffed to a high-definition shine. Basically it’s what cyberpunks reading Mondo 2000 in 1992 imagined music would sound like in 2012. If Gatekeeper’s new album, Exo (out July 17 on Hippos in Tanks), had existed in time for the filming of Hackers I’m sure some of it would’ve ended up on the soundtrack, which I’m guessing is at least half the point. The album’s artwork and “fully explorable virtual environment” were designed by new-media artist Tabor Robak—who collaborates with Gatekeeper’s Aaron David Ross in the boy band/performance-art piece HDBoyz—using a font Robak created that will allow listeners to “decipher hidden messages within the artwork.” I kind of hope it’s just a bunch of robot dick jokes.
Sample Exo‘s lead single, “Tree Drum,” after the jump.