Realise kicks off with searing, thin, piercing electric guitars and skittering but crunchy drums that drive right down the centre of the sound. A synth rise anticipates the song’s tempo and then sustains a pedal note of anticipation and menace, until a brief breakdown when the vocals and bottom end arrive.
Effects-heavy and reminiscent of something Nine Inch Nails might have put out a few years back, the track demonstrates a pounding, inevitable sensibility that sees autotune being used to mangle the vocals so that they seem to modulate between quite sweetly-sung and also deeply menacing in delivery. The vocals are double-tracked very closely, with one (or more?) being sung and another being whispered very close to the mic, and then blended to create a thick, bionic syrup of gloopy and animated colour.
The autotune is used to tweak the melody here and there to pick out notes that lend the overall performance an air of Eastern-tinged ‘otherness’ – I’m not sure how else to describe it, but I do know that it’s effective, and I like it!
Large sequences of the tune and its sounds are put through the otherworldly flanger effect so favoured by Tame Impala, though it’s employed here for atmospherics rather than psychedelia.
The whole tune screams purpose and direction and is all about feel. Harmonic relationships are employed on the guitar sounds to build warmth and develop interest, though the whole arrangement of Realise also (for me) replicates a transmission that’s broken, hypnotic and dirty, and no less urgent for all of that.
The track is taken from Bone Cult’s latest album Death Electronica, and as a 2 word name for their genre, this seems particularly fitting.