Sex & Robot
Nick Young, vocals, guita
Milen Kirov, keyboards, synth bas
Zack Young, acoustic/electronic drum
“Take a chance, live it up, rub it down, lick it up, fluff it good, play around… I’m down!” cries out singer/guitarist Nick Young on “Hey Now!”, the opening track on A.i.’s new album Sex & Robots (released September 11, 2007, on A.i. Music)
“The idea of Sex & Robots is the essence of A.i.,” attests Milen (Mee-LEN) Kirov, the group’s keyboardist and synth bassist. “Sex represents us, the human, the desire, passion and instinct to make music; robots represent our instruments, the electronics, and the technology that allows us to express ourselves.”
A.i. stands for "artificial intelligence," a retro-futuristic concept now woven into the daily fabric of our lives. A.i., the band, is living that post-Space Age wet dream, commingling the analog and the digital, the organic and the synthetic, the muscle and the machine.
“A.i. is first and foremost a rock band”, says drummer Zack Young, “but electronic drums and synthesizers are an integral part of our sound." Zack’s setup consists of a traditional rock drumset mixed with electronic triggers which allow him to perform live. “We play everything in the moment without using sequencers or backing tracks. That's one of the things that has always made A.i. special.
Rich Mouser, who worked with Chris Vrenna on A.i.'s first album Artificial Intelligence, co-produced, engineered and mixed Sex & Robots at his studio, the Mouse House [Altadena, Calif.]. “Rich has equipment dating back to the ‘60s and totally cutting-edge stuff we didn’t have when we recorded our first album. He’s got timpani’s and ‘80s drum machines,” Zack continues. Says Milen: “At one point he pulled out this mini-Moog from the ‘70s that is so delicate he has to push a button with a Q-tip to keep it in tune.” Nick relates: “I recently had this dream that Rich was at the mixing board and all the knobs had turned into Silly Putty, and he was shaping our sound.” Those sounds inspired much of their songwriting.
A.i.’s penchant for experimentation ran rampant in the studio. Nick ventures: “Rock ‘n’ roll is about taking chances and experimentation has always been critical to our songwriting. But with this record, the experimentation was in service of the songs.” Indeed, Sex & Robots electro-rock tracks like “Hey Now!,” “Tell Me U Luv Me,” "Don't Run", “Far Away” and “Kiss the Sky” are first-listen-sing-along catchy.
“We live for that transcendent moment of connecting with our audience,” says Nick