I saw Empathy Test at the same show where I saw LAZERPUNK, and while the music is very different… it worked, and I was equally impressed, but in a different way.
Empathy Test is nominally a duo of Isaac Howlett and Adam Relf, but of the two, Isaac was there with a supporting drummer and keyboardist (whose names I have unfortunately forgotten, though their performance was killer).
Depending on how you classify things, Empathy Test falls into the Synthwave/Darkwave/Downtempo kind of style, with BPMs between 100 and 140 (though those are mostly remixes). Fans of VNV Nation’s latest works will probably feel right at home here.
While watching their live act, I was hit by the impression that these songs are the perfect kind of music for the emotional montage of a show or movie. I’m not the only one who thinks so, as YouTube has kindly demonstrated:
It’s all beautiful, it’s all smooth and gentle and emotional. While drastically different from the other acts I saw them with, Empathy Test has definitely gained a place in my musical rotation. You can find Empathy Test on Amazon and Bandcamp.
If you like the above, you’ll like the rest and love their live show.