Amphetamine Virus has always been a strong influence of mine, as I've seen him play shows throughout the years, always pulling something new, dastardly, and even sometimes funny. On that note, I can't believe some C.H.U.D.-fucker stole his cowbell. ANYWAY, Amphetamine Virus' style is pure breakcore stemming from his past band called Black Pill Book, which had some heavy industrial elements complimented with the vocals of Nym Penga (In the Age Of Terminal Static, respectively.).Amphetamine Virus is it's own entity of music that any genre-sensitive music snob will be blown away. There is nothing that this guy hasn't done, and this is the next chapter: Gradual Shift.
Gradual Shift is an E.P. that shows an artistic maturity that some musicians can develop, while others don't exactly age gracefully. To new listeners this is quite the sonic trip of beats, where to long-time fans this is more of a chill EP that stretches the score to it's full-potential; giving a very serious edge with little sampling now taken over with sheer ferocity of rhythms and melody. As with most EPs, this will leave you wanting more as AV is in the works of his next full-length release. (YES!!!)
We start off with Hatching which feels like it should be the soundtrack to BLAME! (reference to image above) that from the moody opening to the action-packed end, gives an imaginitive action-sequence with music. Building off Hatching to enhance the mood is Things Were Said, which apparently Amphtamine Virus was going in heavy with the dramatic openings only to build into some heavy and sick breakbeats. This music is pure soundtrack to an apocalypse. Yeah, I mentioned sountrack twice. WHAT OF IT?! To press on that, I seriously feed off of music that enhances my life wether I am driving, walking, reading, gaming, drinking, ect. What AV does with music is like sweet MSG to food: So bad for you, but so fucking good! One Side builds up excitement like it was straight from Threat with enough breathing time for a breakdown that will throw you back into the fray as it intensifies! B-BAM!!! Back into the cluster of beats and chaos! Caffeine is a chill and great track that turns into a Dr.Jeckyll / Mr.Hyde sort of mood as it goes from a soft groove to a blast of dubstep bass, then to the inevitable crash at the end, making quite the dramatic track. The final cut in this EP is the song ShiversL It's fantastically spooky mood fills your eardrums with a great trip-hop element added with haunting vocals; a great ending to a very eclectic EP. For more information and music, do check out: http://amphetaminevirus.bandcamp.com/album/gradual-shift PICK THIS UP!!!
2. Things Were Said
3. One Side
Recommended for those who like: End.User, Alec Empire, Venetian Snares, E.S.A., XiSiX, Drumcorps, Bong-Ra, Cursed Chimera, Aphex Twin, Syphilis Sauna, Shitmat, Dormouse,The RZA, DJ Naha, cEVIN Key, Xrin Arms, Alter Der Ruine, Realicide
PREHUMANITY: Death Wave
[Reviewed by: Nicklos Frank]
Here it is, spooky kids! The follow-up E.P. from PREHUMANITY: Death Wave! Where as the first full-length felt like a grand devious entrance tearing and clawing at your soul, this E.P. is more like the cult-classic sequel that went straight to video. So get ready for the Skinemax-style slasher album: Death Wave! Catchy title! We start off with Better Broken, the perfect track to open a slasher-flick from the 80's if it was an instrumental. This isn't my favorite song, as I like to admit I really wish it was an instrumental. It felt too slow for aggressive vocals. I'm not gonna dredge on, because fuck you: the rest of the tracks I love! Following up is Pills, which is my favorite track on the entire disc. It's nightmare soundscapes with awesome lyrics that bring out very excellent points in our pharmaecopia society hits home, and the energy is just BRUTAL. It slows down with a full-on Deathrock / Batcave track called Calling. This is nightclub-worthy for a Goth set night. This song brings me to the shoe-gazing times of the 90's when I discovered various sounds that intruiged me. The electric guitar adds an excellent compliment to the dark sound. Next up is Blood Soaked Suits- another favorite wether it's being played on the E.P. or live. If you catch this song live, you're in for something great. Honestly, I wish this was the opener track with it's heavy beat and great lyrics, but all-around this track is noteworthy and a must-listen track just like Pills and Calling. Bad Things is self-explanatory with the repeated line "It's the bad things we want the most". Do you see a theme here? It's sludge-through is simplistic, but an excellent song all-around. Siding next to Bad Things is Single File, which pairing the tracks was perfect. It all melds together very well. Finally we end with Vote With Your Dollars and it draws this nightmare soundtrack to a close, mixing perfect with Pills and Blood Soaked Suits. This E.P. leaves you wanting more, but at least I can say with confidence that this is only a sample of what's to come with this ever-evolving band. Prehumanity has been spreading itself out wide over the US and a growing following in parts of Europe. Also, the productions value on this E.P. is amazing compared to the last! Every gory detail audibly screams through! As this short-but-sinister album draws to a close, I say to myself "That's it?" but I stop myself. I know for a fact that that isn't it, as when you see the hero kill the monster in the end, you know they always come back with more chills and more blood to spill. PREHUMANITY is that monster. We're ready for that monster to strike again!
1. Better Broken
4. Blood Soaked Suits
5. Bad Things
6. Single File
7. Vote With Your Dollars
Recommended for those who like: Specimen, Laether Strip, Sheep on Drugs, God Module, 64K, Skinny Puppy, Murder Weapons, The Family Curse, Psychopomps, FLA, ohGr
Syphilis Sauna: If you never heard this name, then you missed one of the great noise acts in the HARSH noise scene back in the day before he finally packed his things and moved to some other wretched state to blast the populace's eardrums with hits of Glitch, Breakcore, and, of course, the harshest of HARSH noise.
The era of HARSH was an important time for me; disbanded and disenchanted by the failing industrial scene at the time, I switched for something more bleak and nihilistic instead of the bubblegum garbage with "ooo! I'm violent" overtones. Knowing Patrick (Syphilis Sauna)from shows past, I was introduced to this era of some amazing times. Hell, I still have some of my old HARSH gear and some Backwards NW gear.
I'm glad to have known Patrick over the years, and I'm glad he never stopped making music. SUGAR CRASH DAMAGE was the last album I picked up from him which was kickass in it's entirety, and I have to admit it's great to hear some new feral material. Over the years, Mr.Urn has dabbled in noise, glitch. breakcore and even hip-hop. Broken Teeth/ Bloody Knuckles is the perfect album that hits all points of his career.
The entire album flows perfectly from beginning to end just like his live sets, so this is purely a sick album. It starts with "The Death Of" to "Choked (Plasticized Heart Remix)" which has the PERFECT beginning for what's to come with with it's dirge beginning to beat manipulations and great synthesized movements ending with saw blade-like noise effects into the track "Gets It Groove Back", which is one of the fiercest tracks to listen to in the dark. This is one of the darkest pieces I have heard in a long time.
Here comes an old-school hip-hop beat with a funk from an inner-city garbage can with the track "Garbage Pussy", which gets the dirtiest booties shaking and bringing in Syphilis Sauna's sense of humor in "Self Referential Asshole" which is a great glitch track with plenty of beat beat beat and some 8-bit thrown in there. DAMN, it's a good track. More 8-bit crispy glitch comes careening in with "The State of My Peers is Lousy", to the bright "Linked in/Phased Out" which is one of my favorites because a certain sample in this always makes me crack a smile, plus it's a great middle track. "Fuck the Pain" is a great IDM track with an excellent nod to Peaches.
Following that is another rendition of Choked called, "Choked (White Knuckle Remix)" which is very metal in both rhythm and lyrical content. "Big Adventure Down Under"!!! I love this track. This warped sense of humor track just always hits repeat. It's short, but lords it's great. THEN!!! One of the best covers I heard, cleverly titled "Instant Law Suite", which also hits repeat as well on my player. It fits very well, because it has such a minimalist sound to it, but it holds high as a great Dead Milkmen cover. A definite favorite and the final wave before the seriousl finale.
From "Skips My Lu Then Walks Away" to the title track "Broken Teeth/Bloody Knuckles" is the best and darkest ending to an album I have heard in a while. With the noise twinges mixed with destroyed beats, the ending has a great spoken word to finalize such a great album. This is by far my main favorite with very deep, if not disturbing words well spoken and deserving for the end of something fierce.
Pick this up. You have to now. There are a couple albums here and there on this site where I simply state that you must get this. This is one of them. This is mind-expanding if not genre-breaking. This has got to be Syphilis Sauna's greatest album yet. Get it and grind, whores. BACKWARDS and HARSH love.
1. The Death Of 2. Choked (Plasticized Heart Remix) 3. Gets It Groove Back 4. Garbage Pussy 5. Self Referential Asshole 6. The State of My Peers is Lousy 7. Linked In/Phased Out 8. Fuck the Pain 9. Choked (White Knuckle Remix) 10. Big Adventure Down Under 11. Instant Law Suite 12. Skips My Lu Then Walk Away 13. Broken Teeth/Bloody Knuckles
Recommended for those who like: Merzbow, 100 Pieces, Amphetamine Virus, In The Age Of Terminal Static, Otto Von Shirach, Cursed Chimera, Zenderender, MURDER, XISIX, NAHA, EC8OR, Catdog, Obscure Nerve, BIRTH!, Graz, Blowup Nihilist, Xrin Arms, CEvin Key, Throbbing Gristle, Coil, Baseck, 7718, Herpes Hideaway, Penetration Camp
XISIX: Ghost Knife
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Zounds! Another album by local Laughing Glitch madman XiSiX: The live multi-personality spectre of techno-ragga-master-blasting. Whereas I thought I kind of fell out of the housey-dancy-stuff, I gotta admit XiSiX pulls you back into the fire with some WTF elements that keeps you listening. (This is in a good way, if you are wondering.) Good stuff from a dude that does gonzo-style electronic music. To me Ghost Knife feels like a sequel to Secret Riot, but still maintains balance as it's own beast. Get Lost and Quiet Eyes sets the mood for the album, but throws you for a loop with Remote Crash @ 120, which is one of my favorites! This album is strictly DANCE DANCE DANCE, so it keeps going all throughout. With tracks like Raverobber, Spinal Mutant, and Grey Ant, what's to dislike? I can say this with strict condifence that this album is good to listen to while playing some video games(seeing that my current job is a game tester, I blast this album!). Blue Vertebrae gets a little more noisy and eclectic with various parts changing in-between the track, getting it's shape to build the more glitchy-trancy monster Oblique Phantoms, another fave of mine. Frenzyhole brings out more of the sense of humor to XiSiX's music sort of like a good BRAP session. (Side Note: I would love to hear this guy do a remix for The Residents. Just saying.) From tracks 7 to the end give us a great Laughing Glitch session as if you were at a XiSiX show; dancing fury with some tweaking dynamics and shaking tits to XiSiX! Hunter in a Bad Mood puts me in a good mood, despite the hunter's anger which finally leads into the end(?): Dead SIAC Burn, which keeps the tempo with plenty of noisy grooves that takes away from the beat and gives it more life. Life before the end...not bad.
As for the remixes (BONUS!!!), I did'nt mind the Dead SIAC Burn remix, but the Raverobber one got WAAAAAAAAAAY too trance for me. I'm not one for trance, but it's not bad at all! It's just not what I'm into. At least I'm being honest, right? Right. There should be a separate XiSiX remix album IMHO. Say...that SHOULD happen. Whaddya say, XiSiX? CRISPY-GLITCH!!!
Track list: 1. Get Lost 2. Quiet Eyes 3. Remote Crash @ 120 4. Raverobber 5. Spinal Mutant 6. Grey Ant 7. Blue Vertebrae 8. Oblique Phantoms 9. Frenzyhole 10. Hunter in a Bad Mood 11. Dead SIAC Burn 12. Raverobber [D Gross Remix] 13. Dead SIAC Burn [Grant Remix]
Recommended for those who like: Squarepusher, Meat Beat Manifesto, Orbital, Aphex Twin, Cursed Chimera, CEvin Key, Zenderender, Otto Von Schirach, Autechre
Endless Sunder: Descent
[Reviewed By: Nicklos Frank]
Here it is, kids: Endless Sunder! About damn time, if you ask me. This entire album is a stellar crush to the ear drums that builds up throughout it's entirety. There is a lot going for this upcoming band, and industrial fans should look forward to Endless Sunder's release in late December. Where ES has it's great tracks, it still needs work on the mixing. Parts of the song will throw you out of the track with over-emphasis on the electric beats mixed with the live drum, sometimes making it too loud. At first, I thought it was just me and what I've listened to this album through, but after checking it with everything from stereo speakers to ear buds to studio headphones, there's still a small amount of tweaking left to do.
...and that's just IT. Nothing more on that, because the Descent album in itself is certainly something to look forward to! I realize the version of the album I got to review was months into the finalization process, so this is something that will be but an easily ignored portion of the review. The entire album is, in every sense of the meaning, FIERCE. Asher Vast's brainchild is finally sprouting it's mechanical wings and taking flight into what should be finally the definition of good industrial music. There has been a lot of time and care put into Descent (too much, if you ask me. It's about time, ya dick!), and this is something worth waiting for (shyeah...now cut the BS and play some shows!!!).
Some notable tracks is one of my personal favorites: Atonement. Atonement starts off the album with fast musings and a beat that cleverly gets the momentum pumped. Also, there's a really wicked video by director Byron C. Miller, former God Module member-now The Abominable Horror Director of Doom. We love this guy, and he certainly gave Endless Sunder an extra edge with his directing. Pendulum is fantastic, with it's feel of a Saturday night in a goth night club and it's tanz-metal guitars grinding away that would even make the most snobby scene goth blush.
This entire album never strays away from getting a little glitchy while keeping it spooky. Choking Game is one of those tracks where they had the most fun with glitchy beats, and still keep it's element in step. Let's just go straight into the favorite: the single Mechanism. HOT DAMN!!! A great song with a great video courtesy of the directing magic of Byron C. Miller (I really should just do a separate review for that guy, seriously). Mechanism is, what I think, the best part of the album next to Atonement. This really sets the life and fire of what this band is. Creepy little monologue, a moody opening to a great build-up to finally an excellent chorus that (if they finally play a fucking show) I can certainly see people singing along to at a live event. (I like to give them crap about this. Show soon, boys?) To get a little taste of the album, check out the teaser at:
Also, scope out their youtube channel to watch the amazing videos I'm blathering about and shamelessy promoting our friend, BYRON C. MILLER! (I was going to underline that, buuuuuut...
...aw, what the hell: BYRON C. MILLER!!!)
Seriously, I think you all will enjoy this album, especially with all the effort they put into this beast, and trust me, this beast is HEAVY. Oh, and these jokers did some great remixes of various awesome artists like Aesthetic Perfection, The Break Up and Mixed Messages to name a few. Good stuff!!!
Recommended for those who like: 64K, KMFDM, 16 Volt, Desillusion, Murder Weapons, PIG, Machines of Loving Grace, Monicom, Front Line Assembly.
Cursed Chimera: Land of the Burning Sun
[Reviewed by Nick Frank]
I've listened to this album for far too long without sharing my feelings about this entire album: This album is AMAZING. This album that is just an amazing mish-mash of glitchy electronic with a taste of chip-tune and crunchy beats throws you into something amazing. It's like if the Neverending Story had a video game in the 80's, then THIS would be the music. Rejection 0891 is the perfect introduction to the album, sort of setting the stage for what's to come. The opening credits, if you will. Caustic Surgeon has high-playability and has, once again, a classic video game feel to it which follows up with one of my personal favorites: Mice Behind The Curtain. This entire album puts me in a great mood (I usually listen to this album while reading). I don't want to give away all the wonder and amazement about this album which is available for download at:
http://cursedchimera.bandcamp.com/album/land-of-the-burning-sun , you really got to give this a listen to. Every track to the title track is a real gem, but my main favorite is Plastic Tears Shed No More. It makes for the perfect farewell to a great album. This brings me back to classic Aphex Twin without it going way too Richard D. James. I really cannot describe it in words or type, but all I have to say is this: I think of robotic kittens. ROBOTIC KITTENS. That should be their next album. Over the years, I have heard Cursed Chimera's glitch and noise to which I am a big fan. Land of the Burning Sun is an album that shows that the artist can do ANYTHING they want with their sound. This is the sound of a well-travelled talent that spent years perfecting a soundscape that gives not only a visual, but a raw emotion that cannot be caged. This is perfect moulding of textures, beats, and flow. My only major complaint is how short it is, but it makes me look forward to it's follow-up. I really hope they come to Seattle soon; they have come a long way and will alway impress.
Track List: 1. Rejection 0891
2. Caustic Surgeon
3. Mice Behind the Curtain
4. Black Hole Generator
5. Coldest Desert in Summer
6. Land of the Burning Sun
7. Concrete Trail
8. Plastic Tears Shed No More
Recommended for those who like: Cevin Key, Zenderender, XiSiX, Aphex Twin, Alter Der Ruine, E.S.A, Edges Of Dawn, Fighter X, The Knife, Imperative Reaction
COITUS: Winter of My Discontent
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Coitus has been an off-and-on Seattle project going strong for a little over a decade, and this particular album has the full-on experience of what has accumulated during the last so many years.
This album is the perfect mashing of different styles of industrial, from the riff-heavy tracks, to the tracks reminiscent of PigFace, to absolute wonderful experimental noise. This is an album that feels like a soundtrack, mainly because it's all over the place with various styles, but the theme stays the same.
Only pet peeves is, of course, whisper tracks (mainly, because I want to hear the lyrics!) and possible tweaks of production value. Otherwise, this is as gritty as it gets as one of Seattle industrial's best kept secrets creeps into your ear-drums and brings out a cornucopia of sounds.
The track Dark Matters is the perfect introduction to what's in store for the album, bringning you before the dischordian soudscapes that has a hint of 90's sludge rock mixed in. Additional vocals by Alicia on various tracks (4 and 10) are in perfect mixture with the mood and structure. What I enjoy is that when you get to the halfway point in the album (Do The Charles Manson), it acts like the intermission to the chaos of the 2nd half, which leads to aggro-intense tracks to full-on noise.
In full, this is a great mix of various styles and what you can expect to see in the live shows. (Which reminds me: Dimurea usually hands out this album during shows, so I fully recommend getting your hands on this piece of dischordian industrial!) Spooky tunes for your audio delight. Are you gonna get some? Do it.
1. Dark Matters 2. Adepth 3. Bleed Darkness 4. Penetration 5. The Agess 6. Do the Charles Manson (instrumental) 7. Epic of Yurtle 8. Tombseeker's Vexxing 9. Fuct Me (Grudge Demo Version) 10. Succubus 11. Hollow Eve 12. Revelation's Revolution 13. Killing the Demon
Recommended for those who like: Pigface, Marilyn Manson, Bell's Theorem, Mixed Messages, God Head, Sheep On Drugs, Pill Brigade, PsychoPomps, SMP, Velvet Acid Christ
GODeatGOD: Critical Mass
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Have you ever been lost in thought, and just trailed along until something catches your eye and you blink right back into existence? This is a total body high from GOD eat GOD's release: Critical Mass. This album has some depth and some great experimentation within. This has some excitement mixed with the euphoric soundscapes; an audio way of seeing the forest for the trees, if you will. Where to beginners ears, it would seem to be a tad simplistic, but in actuality there is much going on that you don't know how to feel, so it keeps you focused. BRAVO!!! Focusing on music? You mean, that people won't put it on merely as background noise and actually...dare I say it...listen? YES. Oh very much, yes. God eat God has something that will make you remember the subliminal sounds of Orbital, but has that flair to keep you wandering on like a good Meat Beat Manifesto album. But God eat God is it's own oroborous snake eating it's tail. I recommend this personally for listeners who like to tinker with music themselves. I recommend this for people who want a change of pace and go back to a more ethereal sound that ISN'T trance. This is a real solid album, however short. My only complaint is that Pulp should have been longer.
1. Grey Matters 2. The Big Ugly 3. Of Youth and Beauty 4. Everything I Know is a Chemical Reaction 5. Nautilus 6. Pulp
Recommended for those who like: Black Cell, Juno Reactor, Orbital, Meat Beat Manifesto, Kraftwerk, Brocken Spectre.
Void Inject: Godfuckers
[Reviewed by Asher Vast]
You may have heard of the Kult of Red Pyramid in Berlin but one project from the same guy worth a listen is his side project; Void Inject. This 6 song EP is the runner up for a debut release by Void Inject TBA in 2012. We start off with Deflektor, a beat heavy and eerie but rhythmic jam that I found quite enjoyable.
I can hear some similar elements reminiscent of Suicide Commando’s Hell Raiser but with a deeper and more sophisticated ambiance while still remaining danceable. The vocal style throughout the EP is a consistent shrill sounding agrotech screamed approach but Ivan has a way of pushing the envelope by incorporating elements of the agrotech vocal style without letting it limit his overall sound by sticking to a single intonation like most Aggortech vocalists.
Anyone who appreciates Aggrotech but is sick of the same sounding vocals is likely to enjoy this EP. Achtung Kinder is one of my personal favorites of this release. This song has a lot of potential for getting people moving in a club, I could imagine rivet heads in Seattle dancing to this track.
We wrap up the EP with the instrumental Hearse. This song is a great ending to a solid EP. Its simplicity is a nice touch as it creates a subtle contrast to the rest of the tracks which are much more involved rhythmically. This is yet another great release by Ivan Rogar and I think we can anticipate a great album if he continues this legacy. The Godfuckers EP is a great example of Ivan’s ability to compose catchy sounding industrial beats that are dirty in all the right places with the clarity and hard hitting grooves you would expect from a seasoned act like Leather Strip or Hocico. We are very excited to hear the debut release from Void Inject!
2. Life Transfusion
3. Achtung Kinder
4. Godfuckers (Hosanna in Distortion)
Recommended for those who like: Hocico, Frontline Assembly, Obscure Descension, Leaether Strip, Velvet Acid Christ, Wumpscut, Suicide Commando, Pill Brigade and Hex Rx.
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
KMFDM always makes great music. Even people that don't like KMFDM for reasons unknown are still seen bobbing their heads to KMFDM's music. You've seen it. I've seen it. There you go.
On to the album itself: It's another great installment in the KMFDM Katalogue. Brash, rude, and catchy as always, but like every album there are some surprises! WTF?! adds elements of strength from WWIII, and kicks it harder to the reality of what is going on today. KMFDM is always known for speaking out, and this one is shouting it through a thousand bull-horns; the more I listen to this, the more I love it.
(To name a few) Favorites of this album include Krank: The perfect introduction to a ultra-heavy beat album. Rebels In Kontrol: Lucia shouts and growls with such ferocity in great support of Julian Assagne and his controvertial and eye-opening wikileaks site that changed the world. Lynchmob: by FAR, my main favorite track on this album! It's arranged brilliantly; the lyrics are fantastic; the constant changes in the track make it much more fierce and the message is pushed further, rendering the track timeless. Spectre: The vocals thrown in by William Wilson give this track an extra edge that cuts deep; the perfect union of KMFDM and Legion Within. Always glad to hear more collabs between these two! In final: This entire album is excellent from beginning-to-end. Te beginning gets you completely pumped while the ending sends you farewell with a great creepy twist to a classic children's rhyme (I want more of THIS.). I've grown up in my teens listening to the constant evolution that is KMFDM. KMFDM never fails to please, and they always have something for everybody with their musical prowess. A must for die-hard fans, and a good intro the new! Pick this sucker up and krank the ULTRA-HEAVY BEAT!!!
2. COME ON - GO OFF (Feat. Koichi Fukuda)
3. REBELS IN KONTROL
5. TAKE IT LIKE A MAN (Feat. Free Dominguez)
6. VIVE LA MORT!
7. DYSTOPIA (Feat. Bill Rieflin)
9. SPECTRE (Feat. William Wilson)
11. DEATH & BURIAL OF C.R.
Recommended for those who like: Legion Within, Frontline Assembly, Pop Will Eat Itself, Revolting Cocks, PIG, Spittin' Cobras, Killing Joke, Kidney Thieves, MonoFader, Hate Dept., Ministry, Static X, Pigface, Endless Sunder, Angels on Acid, 16Volt, Stiff Valentine, Left Spine Down, Rabbit Junk
Pill Brigade: Regurgitate (Remaster)
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Here it is: Pill Brigade's sophomore release remastered! It's buffed up and re-painted to what PB's earliest sound was, and to whomever is a Pill Brigade fan can truly appreciate the early sound and give it a whirl. THIS,essentially, is the beginning of something massive. Now, we are waiting ever so patiently for the new shit. (I had to, I always poke Xlex about that.) My personal favorite is Rave to the Grave. It's so angry and sarastic in it's own way...and heavily HEAVILY distorted and not as rave and more of a head-banging track. Pill Brigade is something that I can see Alice Cooper sinking his teeth into, with all the horror references. My complaint, however, is to have less of the "whisper-scream" effect, and try to replicate the live sound where it doesn't come off like the rest of what's expected in electro. I know Xlex has a killer voice, so he should bring that out more, otherwise the whisper-distort voice becomes as commonplace as a punk rock singer feigning a British accent. GIVE US A SCREAM, PILL BRIGADE!!! Get your stompy boots on get your fix with crispy beats! The term "Electroshit" is very fitting for the monster that is Pill Brigade, because no matter what Xlex does with his music, he puts in so much emphasis that he does what he wants, and doesn't give a shit about the rest. Love it or hate it, he will keep making what he makes, and that's the way to go. Another great addition is the bonus remixes! Some are very worthy to blast in your homestead, car, bathroom, ect. My eardrums appreciate the Electroshit beats that are thrown into a horror explosion of sound. Take a stompy walk down memory lane with this beast of a debut. Trust me, it gets better from here; plus it's a free download! *Or you can donate, and help a band out...hint hint. You mooches* ( http://pillbrigade.com ) There's also a download of PB vs. PDS you can give a listen to! Now with that all said and done, time for a drink or 20 to come down from this mental parade that is Pill Brigade. Catch these jerks live: They put on one hell of a show!!!
1. 406 2. Po5+ Hum4N Cod3 feat. Mike Lee 3. Electroshit 4. Devoured 5. We Eat Your Flesh 6. Bug Bite Squared 7. Robot Weapon 8. M.O.D. 9. Rave to the Grave 10. Cursed Puppet Bonus Tracks: 11. 406 (DJ HazMatt rmx) 12. Electroshit (electroslut rmx) 13. Rave to the Grave (A-Cog craving pills rmx) 14. Robot Weapon (WASTE rmx)
Recommended for those who like: Suicide Commando, Velvet Acid Christ, WASTE, Bell's Theorem, Coitus, Electroslut, Das Ich, :wumpscut:, A-Cog, Combichrist
Einstürzende Neubauten: 2002-2010 Strategies Against Architecture IV
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
This particular group has been the influence of many for decades, and here is a great compilation of variants, singles, and live recordings from Einstürzende Neubauten. This particular double CD includes a booklet that documents the span of 2002-2010 including stories behind the tracks (which they normally do) by Max Dax. This is a must for any major fan of Einstürzende Neubauten, but must implore people getting into EN by giving a listen to the earlier favorites such as Halber Mensch orTabula Rasa. This particular compilation covers from Silence is Sexy to Alles Wieder Offen and beyond. Much appreciation goes to Einstürzende Neubauten for sharing some of the material that was specifically for members that donated to neubauten.org. This kind of scraps together a little bit of history that most rivet-heads will appreciate. This is avant-garde at it's deepest primal being. This is true industrial aside from the lousy homogenized garbage. E.N. can take garbage and turn it into an amazing sound that many try to replicate, but it's a total different living being. Complexity in chaos. This release is already over a year old, but I still recommend it to ANYONE who wants a great addition to their collection and a great piece of musical history.
2.Selbsportrait Mit Kater (Full Ver) 2.Tagelang Weiss
3.Ein Leichtes Leises Säuseln 3.Wenn Dann
4.YOUME & MEYOU 4.Jeder Satz Mit Ihr Hallt Nach
5.Dead Friends (Around the Corner) 5.Susej
6.Insomnia 6.Magyar Energia
7.Party in Meck-Pomm 7.Birth Lunch Death
8.X 8.Weil Weil Weil (Freie Radikale In Der Warteschleife)
9.Floorpiece / Grundstück 9.Unvollständigkeit
10.Good Morning Everybody 10.Let's Do It A Dada
11.Waiting For the Call 11.Bertolt Brecht Und Der Weltempfänger
12.Wo Sind Meine Schuhe? (dub mix) 12.Musterhaus-Ausstellung I.Anarchitektur, II.Et Cetera, III.Weingeister & IV.Tohu Wa Bohu
13.GS1 & GS2
14.Palast Der Republik
Recommended for those who like: Merzbow, Diamanda Galas, Download, Nurse With Wound, NON, Andreas Ammer, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
"Ok...here we go...We have a sleeper of an album here. I'm not trying to sound like a hater, but this album isn't for me. The tracks, for the most part, are easily forgettable if not making me wish they were cut shorter. If I'm in a dub-mood, however, I will reach towards this album. It doesn't really heat up and get noticeable until Track 8 (I g0t Virus), which sets me up for what I've been looking for in the name "Vi11AiN". It starts to get a little exciting, but the mish-mash of a modern sound with the predictability of 90's Chemical Brothers doesn't really save much. I learned that you cannot judge an album by it's cover, but I'm not gonna lie: I was REALLY excited to hear this album when I got it in my grubby little hands. My ears tended to disagree with me until the 2nd half of the album. The mastering was great, the music itself is superbly done, but it just doesn't hold high for when you want something fast-paced and all you get is repetitious dub (Honestly, I was hoping for a breakcore album). But do not let me discourage you from picking this up! There is always something for everyone and I would certainly recommend this to anyone into a more mood-music mind, let alone anyone into dub-heavy influence. It has plenty of bass and grooves that hit perfect without mudding up the tracks. I can see the live experience of Vi11Ain being much more exciting, to be honest. But if the slower electronic is more your sound, then go for this. Otherwise, I gotta be on a lot of pain-killers and playing old-school Unreal for me to groove to most of this. Remember: the 2nd half of this is where it's at! I can see some of my DJ friends spinning some of this, ESPECIALLY track 10 (Trioxin 245 Dub).
1. Big Murder
2. Discordian Age
3. Radio Voices
4. Walled City
5. Funny Games
7. Midnight Dub
8. I g0t Virus
9. Killer 2011
10. Trioxin 245 Dub
12. Yesteryears Late Nights
13. Wayward Beings
Recommended for those who like: Brocken Spectre, Amon Tobin, Massive Attack, Goldie.
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
"I see the structure beneath the chaos..."
Ever heard of The Shizit? Rabbit Junk? Wolves Under Sail? Then this another piece to add to the collection. Another piece of mind by frontman JP Anderson(Of whom we did an interview with. Did you see it? Go check it out!!!) who dishes out more of a thrash sound with electronic beats, giving it a level where metal and electronic meet. With this careful balance, he shows you a side of our world that would make "Obsolete" by Fear Factory a child's tale (although that album is still amazing, believe that!). JP's soundscapes tends to connect with one-another in his other projects, giving this sort of notion that each different band is like a series of books based on the same universe; a subject matter all it's own, but has enough to carry on as it's own hero/villian. What originally was supposed to be a brand-spanking new album as The Shizit, the name had to be changed due to a breach of contract with former member Brian Shrader. I personally think giving this album a fresh face and new identity as THE NAMED takes away from what was the sophomoric efforts of both Anderson and Shrader respectively, and doubly ridding a very deliquent name such as The Shizit. The Named gives it's own ominous tone in just the name itself. Kind of hails to the similar play on words as The Residents! (But they both sound different, of course...I'm just going with names, here.) This album is meant to be played loudly while you are on the freeway going over 70 in the middle of the night. It's meant to be blasted while drinking cheap beer and exchanging ideas over a bonfire in Alki. This album is what we hope our doomed future may become if we don't work together! I look forward to more from THE NAMED. Check it out!!!
1. Civilization Extermination
2. Break Out
3. Seeing is Destroying
5. Bloodlust Blues
6. The Shape of Living Resistance
7. Fuck The Noise
8. Young Broke Pissed
10. Wasting Away (Nailbomb cover)
11. Fat Slave
Recommeneded for those who like: The Shizit, Alec Empire, Endless Sunder, Rabbit Junk, Fear Factory, Front Line Assembly, Stiff Valentine, Atari Teenage Riot, Mortuary, Stiff Valentine
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Hailing from California is solo-artist Zenderender with her beat-heavy break-through Mercury. Let the delectable poison control your ear-drums on this electronic sonic explosion, starting with a humorous and cartoony beginning to it's final fancy glitchy-dancy finale. The soundscapes rivet your imagination and actually takes you to great scenarios. It's like a glitched-out Neverending Story. Like playing Super-Nintendo till 4AM.The title track itself is EXPLOSIVE. Tons of beats and breaks and blasts that give this entire album not only variety, but personality in all the tracks. This album also expresses so many emotions in a schizophrenic high. In one notable track, you get to hear Zenderender sing! Yes, she has a great voice to boot! Fitting this into the mix of the moody surroundings of what seemed to be a strictly instrumental album added flavor and a good chapter starter to the other half of the album. It's not very often that you get to find albums that are excellent from beginning to end, but I have been lucky with some of my past reviews including this great album. Expect to hear more from her in the future!
1. Final Boss
2. Black Eyed White Fish (MY FAVORITE TRACK!!!)
5. Bubblegum Barracuda
7. How I Failed the Turing Test
8. Dreaming at 600mph
9. Repent, Harelquin!
Recommended for those who like: Alter Der Ruine, W.A.S.T.E., Cursed Chimera, Meat Beat Manifesto, CEvin Key, XiSiX
The Family Curse: White Medicine
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Viciously delicious. Stabbing shadows with steak-knives. Bat-Cave tremors. These are the thoughts to the White Medicine album by The Family Curse. I cannot stop listening to this album. It seriously has a hold on me that just makes me look forward to more of their shows and the next release. This trio has been setting up various shows all around Seattle taking on the scene with much gusto, and this album backs them up. White Medicine has the elements of what bat-cave, gothic, and electronic can do correctly mixed together. This is pure alchemy for the ears. It tackles many emotions and doesn't let go, plus it never gets stale! This album's taste is very suited for more of the dark side of the spectrum away from the happy EBM, Future-Pop palette; it's full of elements of Siouxsie with a chainsaw, Big Black with it's angrier kid sister, Rock with filth filth FILTH. I love it. It's addicting and spooky and lovely and fierce all at the same time.
Rating: 9 out of 10 (Get it, you hyaenas!)
1. Teen Challenge
2. Laughing My Way to the Bank
3. Back in the Water
4. Big Black Mark
5. Like Lightning
6. Sewing Box
7. Exodus From Birds In The Night
8. Bodies in Rooms
Recommended for those who like: Daisy Chainsaw, Big Black, Ministry, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Pain Teens, Suicide, The Jesus Lizard, Butthole Surfers, Godflesh, Diamanda Galas
PREHUMANITY: Not So Becoming
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Prehumanity has been a constant evolution since Alexander Harris first created this monstrosity. Making his way through noise, punk, and industrial scenes, there is finally a full album with heavy synth accompaniments by Hilding. Prehumanity is just what Seattle needed. Prehumanity is THE soundtrack of nightmares. Prehumanity is a taped over and over again VHS copy of Carnival of Souls played on a messed-up VCR viewed on a 1970's Zenith television. Prehumanity is classic Corman Horror with a bite of Troma. This is all wrapped up in a short but savage album. This is ferocity in audio-form. It sets the mood and tone perfectly with campy to viscious synths you would hear in an 80's horror film, tackled over with anger-driven howls with no remorse and little, if any, vocal effects. This is pure spooky greatness.
This particular industrial band can still keep a dancy beat, but keep things fresh with variety; it never gets stale! It's not an album where you can pin-point who the general influence is, nor is it the same cut-and-dry EBM-pretentious-techno-goggles-and-dreadfalls garbage that clings on to an era of music that fell into mediocrity years ago. Not So Becoming rips the monotony apart with a style that at parts sounds simplistic and minimalist, but the soul is strong within the creation. Breaking away from arpeggio-melodies and aggro-tech "hellectro" (I know, I still crack up hearing that), is something that swings goth, screams hardcore, and bleeds industrial. Bloody bloody industrial. Bat-cave with chainsaws.
Recommended for those who like: Download, Horror Movies, God Module, 64K, Skinny Puppy, more horror movies
Angels On Acid: Blood, Sweat and
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
Angels on Acid! A friend of mine recommended them to me, and I gotta admit they have got great potential! Their sound is great, plus it has a lot of variety mixed with many dance-club tracks. I'm not really big on the club tracks from being burned out on it as a DJ, but there are some noteworthy tracks that would add some extra stomp to the dance floor! This album alone sets the tone for spooky and awesomeness. Plus, there's many remixes added to this album for more enjoyment.
Constructive critisism: The lead vocalist already has a great voice to front this band, so cut the vocal effects to a minimum. (Otherwise, great!)
I look forward to upcoming shows, as I have been told they have great energy and presence. Blood, Sweat and Tears is the perfect preview to see how they are live! Plus, catch the Haunt Me video! Favorite tracks: My Battery, Haunt Me, The Great Architect, Posession to name a few.
Rating: 8 out of 10
1. The Great Architect
5. Haunt Me
6. Now You Know
7. Waiting For The Day
8. Apocalypse Now
9. My Battery
10. Blood, Sweat and Tears
11. Blood, Sweat and Tears (Carphax Files Rmx)
12. Blood, Sweat and Tears (Wynardtage Rmx)
13. Waiting For the Day (Psyborg Corp. Rmx)
14. Apocalypse Now (Sonic Foundry Rmx)
15. Waiting For the Day (Erektor Rmx)
Recommended for those who like: Malaise, Wynardtage, Suicide Commando, God Module, Erektor, Psyborg Corp, Aestetic Perfection, Carphax Files, Sonic Foundry, Nitzer Ebb, Rotersand
Atari Teenage Riot: Is This
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
As an avid ATR fan, I am not going to pull any punches(which I'm sure Atari Teenage Riot would appreciate) on their latest album, Is This Hyperreal? When I heard about the new album I was shocked, because I thought, "Is this hyperreal? Is this ATARI TEENAGE RIOT???", and there has been some skepticism on my part. Well, it took me a couple times to listen to it, which ATR graciously gave fans the chance to listen to the ENTIRE album for free (THANKS, GUYS!), and it's a good album! It's not 90's ATR with heavy earfuls of amen-breaks, but it still has the spirit and the want to pump your fist and shout. I feel spoiled because I was used to a sound that had a lot more chaos than care, but they still keep the flame alive. I do think, however, that this feels like a good follow-up to Alec Empire's The Futurist. (Try it. Do it. NOW.)
There's nothing I can really say except this: Ever since I heard ATR in 96-97, they have always left an impression on me as the type of band that wants you to be a part, instead of distanced. Their comeback is having mixed feeling like when Skinny Puppy re-formed in 2004; lots of people don't know what to think. People fear "new". Give this album a shot. Give "new" a shot.
I'm not going to miss out on the future. We miss you, Carl Crack (RIP). ACTIVATE AND START THE RIOT!!! NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Rating 8 out of 10 Chainsaws
Track list: 1. Activate!
2. Blood in My Eyes
3. Black Fang
4. Is This Hyperreal?
5. Codebreaker (Feat. Aoki)
6. Shadow Identity
7. Re-Arrange Your Synapses
8. Digital Decay
9. The Only Slight Glimmer Of Hope
10. Collapse Of History
Recommended for those who like: The Named, Alec Empire, Aoki, The Shizit, Schizuo, EC8OR, Amphetamine Virus, Nic Endo, DIGITAL HARDCORE!!!
Stiff Valentine : America Bleeding
[Reviewed by Nicklos Frank]
When you look up Stiff Valentine on Google, it mentions "industrial metal disco". I think it hits the nail on the head pretty well for the fast pace album America Bleeding. Hailing from Canada, SV throws you right into what America is like through their eyes with fast-paced tracks like The Bleeding, to sludging jam-tracks like Swamp Thing (My personal fav), to the calming outro of Collide. This album has a charm that people on the road would dig and possibly relate. Honestly not much for the clubs (unless we might see a remix-album in the future?), but this is most DEFINITELY "live-show-jumping-up-and-down-and-moshing-with-your-buddies" kind of music, which builds up much-momentum. Also, you will find many different acts in collaboration with this album! Give it a go if you like chugging guitar-lines and metal vibes!
Rating: 7 out of 10 chainsaws
1. The Bleeding (Feat. 16Volt)
3. Good Enough
4. Electric Dreams
5. Swamp Thing (Feat. Front Line Assembly & Left Spine Down)
7. Pit Boss
10. World Apart (Feat. SMP)
11. Collide (Feat. Landscape Body Machine)
Recommended for those who like: SMP, 16Volt, Front Line Assembly, Left Spine Down, Landscape Body Machine, Fear Factory, MushroomHead, Desillusion, Spineshank
XiSiX: The man, the myth, the captain of massive random costume changes in the middle of his sets. XiSiX is a superhero, villain, and anti-hero wrapped in a mind-fuck. If you have never seen him live, then I recommend you do! He is one of the few people in the electronic / noise / industrial / whatever-you-wanna-call-it scene that not only has variety, but the charm to keep the listener wanting more.
...And if you never heard him before? Pick up "Secret Riot": his latest twisted musical musings that will kick you back to the electro-dance days of 1995, then Scorpion-style pull you back to the present with an uppercut of glitch.
I'm very excited about this album in particular, because XiSiX has left behind quite a few good albums and one of his latest collabs with MURDER called "Delerium Temens", which this album acts like a perfect follow-up.
I do admit, however, there are certain parts where I lose attention, but that's with the heavy electronica parts. But what the hell am I saying?! This IS an electronica album! The parts where I get lost in the beats kind of remind me when I first started interested in electronic music; the flowing of the arpeggios and perfect timing on the sampling. It goes to show that even obscure glitch artists know how to make you dance the best ways possible!
I'm seriously going to stress this to all the Seattleites that like ANYTHING electronic: do NOT miss out on XiSiX!!! Find him and check out more of his releases! ("Ill Black Mirror" is a REALLY good one.) Remember kids: Variety is the spice of life. XiSiX makes that statement stand out. Prepare to strap on your stompy boots and maybe even shake your booty! CRISPY-GLITCH!!!
1. Fast Anthrax
3. Gone Blind
5. Pure Czech
6. Sublime Mess
7. Cochlea Crash
8. Burned Up
9. Snap Dragon
10. Ole Blues Number 88
12. Vodun For Trigun
14. Hurt Throat [Bonus Track]
Rating: 8 out of 10 chainsaws
Recommended for those who like: Meat Beat Manifesto, Coil, CEvin Key, Aphex Twin, Orbital
Jaz Coleman never ceases to amaze and even frighten me. His vocals and his person are just too powerful to comprehend; some would claim insanity, whereas I would differ slightly as his madness is his genius. "Absolute Dissent" however, is still teetering for me.
On one hand: it is always great to hear something new from Killing Joke, where on the other: it feels like he backtracked to more of his 90's pop sound which is great for background noise, but it defeats the purpose of his excellent lyrics. There is little to no industrial elements in this entire album, but it should NOT sway someone from giving this album a shot.
Killing Joke has a strong influence in the industrial / synth / punk scene all around the world for decades, and be sure as shit they are relevant; knowing you have at one point swayed your sad little boots on the dance floor to one of their tracks. (If you have never heard of Paul Raven, then go dunk your head.)
The lyrical content, as always, is deep and always stings as the political subject matter hits home to many people all around the world, and his constant reminder that we can live free against the constraints of monetary means and the world is more vast and rich and full of knowledge than what a stuffy government has to offer; with disease, guns and plastic smiles.
Honestly, it's a lot better than half the shit that comes out (FUCK THE GOVERNMENT!!! RISE!!! Blah blah blah) where the message gets stale, the lyrical prowess in this particular album still stays chewy and satisfying.Plus, there is a wonderful song in eulogy for departed KJ member, Paul Raven (also: Ministry, Zilch, and Prong to name a few).
As a final thought, I like this album, but it still has yet to hold high to the catalogue. It's worth giving a spin if you are a die-hard fan. To anyone new to Killing Joke, you must backtrack and hear the constant evolution that kept them strong since 1978. They have paved the way of many great music styles that still remain significant to this day. Remember kids: Respect your elders. 7/10 Recommended for those who like: Cubanate, 16Volt, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Faith No More
02-The Great Cull
03-Fresh Fever from the Skies
05-The World Hell
07-The Raven King
09-Honour The Fire
10-Here Comes The Singularity
10-Ghosts Of Landbroke Grove
Recommended for fans of: Cubanate, 16Volt, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Faith No More.
Over all: 8 out of 10
[Reviewed by Fuzzy Machine]
With a synthpop like inspired aggrotech sound, the artist Heartwire has seemed to create this dark ambient music that not only brings a unique style to industrial, but also shows the bands originality and creative ability.The album begins with an ambient style song, which seems to slowly progress into the album itself, which then turns into an aggressive song entitled CircuitBraker (v2) in this track they use not only a typical aggrotech voice distorter , but also a course using an un-synthesized , un-distorted, normal singing voice.
This is a technique not used by many aggrotech artists but I adore the ones who do. The band continues this style throughout the remaining album, I find it delightful and wish to hear more from this artist in the nearby future.
04-The Clock Is Ticking
07-In Sequence08-Inhuman Entity
Recommended for fans of: Dismantled, God Module, Code 64, Gendel.
Unlike VAC's previous albums the band decided to take a more "acoustic" approach to their music. Usually there would be so many distortions on just about every item in each song, The Art Of Breaking Apart has a more clearer sound. We begin this album with the song "Tripped Out", This song brings some very interesting skills to the plate. A very clean but upbeat bass mixed with a simple drumming, we find the synthesizer in a calming phaser, morphing itself gently with the the rest of the song forming this dark ambient sound.
Next Bryan Erickson (the lead man behind VAC) begins to sing without any synth or distortion to his voice. This isn't a new technique but it is very uncommon when relating to previous Velvet Acid Christ albums. He continues with the song using the same sound with little change up, but still unrepetitive in away to remain pleasant to the ear. In the next few songs "Vaporized" (an instrumental track) and "Black Rainbows" he use's and acoustic guitar, which at least to my knowledge a completely new turn in VAC's music, but he doesn't stop there. He begins to incorporate a dark ambient, heavy electronic sound along with this acoustics a very new technique to industrial music, and surprisingly doesn't sound like shit.
The song "Black Rainbow" brings in a light depression with lyrics, speaking about dying and failure. VAC Also brings back an alternative versions of an older songs "Phucking Phreak"labled as "Phucked Up Phreak", a song off the album Calling Ov The Dead realest in 1998 by Off Beat, and Pendragon Records. Using A few new audio clips from the bands most use film Seven. The Song "Caustic Disco" puts a very danceable vibe the the rest of the album. Although the lyrics remain dark and twisted, they are projected in a way to seem upbeat. The rest of the song continues the upbeat sound until an awkward ending which didn't make much sense.
We end the album with a song entitled "Silver". In this song VAC brings back the acoustic guitar with a soft strumming, and cues in a soft piano to compliment the sound. His voice has a slight distortion but but not overdrawn, so you can still receive the message. A soft drum is also part of this song, wrapping the entire song into a comfortable blanket of dark ambiant trance. The song ends and a bout 40 seconds later VAC provides a kind of "behind the scenes" t ake, where the bring you through the making of the album and VAC's own personal thoughts of what they have created. Over all I view this album as one of VAC's most simple yet artistic album to date. I really enjoyed listening to this album and I would advise anyone getting into industrial music or already a fan of, tolisten to this album.
Song of choice: Amnesia
Album Rating: 9/10
01. Tripped Out 4:50 02. Vaporized 4:43 03. Black Rainbows 4:34 04. Phucked Up Phreak 7:50 05. Killing A Stranger 4:06 06. The Art Of Breaking Apart 5:11 07. Caustic Disco 4:47 08. Killed In Space 5:16 09. Amnesia 4:57 10. Faithless 4:17 11. Silver 3:12 11.(continued) Untitled - Interview 16:49
Combichrist has a very distinctive sound. The layering of the bass and synth all flow in a unique way that many artist cant really duplicate or create. They've all been one of my favorite industrial artist for awhile, but I hate to say that I am very disappointed with the latest album Today We Are All Demons.
The album still has the same classic Combichrist sound, but lacks in some areas such as the lyrics, them seem a bit a weak compared to previous combichrist albums, and Andy LaPlegua seems to have lost the aggression in his voice in a few songs where it seems to be needed.The album begins with "No Afterparty", short clip that seems to be a continuation from the previous album What The Fuck Is Wrong With You People.
The first song is "All Pain is Gone". The song starts off very nicely with an aggressive beat, LaPlegua starts this scream, and he continues it through the whole song. His scream isn't horrible, but it seemed like it ran on for too long. Parts where it seemed he should have been singing, or at least tone down a bit, he continued to scream. The next Song bothers me. "Kickstart The Fight" seems to have some very awkward vocals, it almost seems questionable if it was LaPlegua because of the aggression displayed weakness. It seemed almost like a Combichrist cover band or something. I think the lyrics where some of the cheesiest Combichrist lyrics to date. But the music behind the vocals were impressive.
Something I can count on from Combichrist.In "I Want Your Blood" Andy does his screaming thing again, its seems as if the only way he can show his aggression and aggravation these days is by screaming a gravely, dry, almost unbearable scream that almost doesn't even fit his music. "Can't Change The Beat" is much like "Kickstart The Fight" his vocals are almost whiny and pathetic. Its seems like Combichrist could turn in to a Synthpop band."Spit (Happy Pig Whore)", probably one of the best songs on the album so far. This song brings back a lot of old school Combichrist instrumental style music. High ly danceable and very enjoyable.The next song "A New Form of Silence" finally shows some
decent vocal tracks from LaPlegua. Now They aren't aggressive, but he did manage to lose the whole synthpop sound witch made me happy. The song is more of an instrumental do to the fact little vocals are use and its pretty much they same thing being repeated. Now the only problem I ran into was the beat seemed a bit playful towards the end. The Absolute best son of the album would have to be "Scarred". The song opens up with an audio clip from the movie "Pump Up The Volume" (I know this cause I love that movie). LaPlegua finally brings us some classic Combichrist vocals, with all the proper aggression. The music on this song seems to bring the whole album together. From this point on the album stays in a very positive Combichrist sound we all love.
Over all I'd still have to say this is one of the worst Combichrist albums to date. I'm really hoping that the next album is better because I can see this turning into a depressing downfall on one of the top industrial artist of our time. For those who have yet to listen to Combichrist I strongly recommend to listen to one of Combichrist's previous album before making a judgment call on them do to the lack in this album.
Song or Choice: A New Form of Silence
Album Rating: 6/10
01. No Afterparty 0:42 02. All Pain Is Gone 4:57 03. Kickstart The Fight 5:02 04. I Want Your Blood 5:12 05. Can't Change The Beat 4:26 06. Sent To Destroy 4:37 07. Spit 4:27 08. New Form Of Silence 3:51 09. Scarred 4:26 10. The Kill V2 5:19 11. Get Out Of My Head 4:25 12. Today We Are All Demons 5:01 13. At The End Of It All 4:35 13(continued). Hidden Track 5:55
Another one man band, Halo In Reverse brings us sounds similar to that of early Nine Inch Nails (broken, The downward spiral). I can find myself really enjoying Joshua Steffen's sound and voice through out the whole album(head man behind Halo In Reverse). He tends to bring back that old mainstream industrial sound that seems to have been lost for so many years.
The album starts off with an instrumental. A slow yet thunderous piano, following a simple complementing synth. After a few seconds we et a sudden durst of hard hitting drums, guitar and various machine sounds that seem to turn this simple song into a march. "Somethings Gone Terribly Wrong" is the title of this song, and in this song you feelcan feel what the artist is creating, the emotion behind the music.
The next song called "Pop Icon Puppets" sounds as if it was NIN's "Starfuckers" in collaboration with NIN's "Deep". The song was mixed incredibly well. A lot of glitchy sounds in the background music but it was all used to create a very unique sound. "Modesty's Failure" sounds like it uses a lot of sounds or at least very similar sounds to the song "Burn" (NIN). I don't know weather to love it or hate it. The song has such an amazing flow but at the same time, it sounds too much like "Burn". "Go All The Way" is the title of the next song, this song sound like DeadStar Assemblage and early Deadsy. Different form the last songs but still enjoyable.
"Falling Apart" Probably the most original non-instrumental song so far are the album. "Sweetest Honey", the song sounds almost as if Trent Reznor Himself is doing backing vocals. lyrics and just all around sound seems as if Trent and Black Blight Burns got together and made a song. The song sounds amazing nonetheless. "Something This real" sounds like another Nine Inch Nails song. "They Have Taken Me Away", this song starts off original, but somewhere before the middle it begins to sound like another NIN song.
It seems to go back and forth like this through out the rest of the song. "I Machine" The most original song on the album, but still has some Nine Inch Nails elements (songs from Broken). The rest of the album sounds like a bunch of modified Nine Inch Nails songs. Halo In Reverse has made an album of that in which is the child of Nine Inch Nails. Where the album lacks in originality it makes up for in layering and musical ability. Joshua Steffenseems to be the next musical genius of our time, and I am looking forward to any album he maybe coming up with next. I would defiantly recommend this of and industrial fan or anybody getting into the electronic rock scene.
Song Of Choice: "You"
Out Of 10: 9/10
01. Somethings Gone Terribly Wrong 3:18 02. Pop Icon Puppets 4:43 03. Modesty's Failure 4:48 04. Go All the Way 4:32 05. Falling Apart 4:34 06. Sweetest Honey 3:14 07. Something This Real 3:30 08. They've Taken Me Away 6:12 09. I Machine 4:15 10. Where Were You 3:16 11. Whittled to An Edge 4:17 12. You 5:30 13. Acubens 4:20
Similar to: Nine Inch Nails, Filter, Black Light Burns, DeadStar Assemblage, Deadsy
Daniel Myer once cited a magazine quote that called Assemblage 23 “The Future Of Synthpop” as one of his inspirations for starting Destroid.If Compass is any indication, the future looks bright indeed.Tom Shear’s latest offering sees him boldly exploring new directions while still remaining a dominant force in the EBM/Synthpop world.
Devoted followers of Assemblage 23 are no doubt familiar with the fact that Shear likes to draw influences from many different genres, and Compass is a great example of this ideal.Spark and Impermanence bring a strong dancefloor feel to the mix with the former being an exploration into the darker side of electro-house, while the latter wouldn’t be at all out of place in a progressive house set alongside the likes of Way Out West or Tarrantella.
Further on, Leave This All Behind evokes a strong post-punk meets synth-pop feel, think Echo and the Bunnymen meets Neuroactive, that is, catchy, danceable, and very accessible, in a positive way.Switching gears and heading back into more familiar territory, Alive finds Mr. Shear channeling Exile or Pure-era Gary Numan, while flexing his own very considerable vocal talent.In fact, it’s safe to say that this track is one of the most powerful vocal performances ever committed to WAV by Shear.
Finally, bringing the listener home from this far-reaching exploration is The Cruelest Year, which shows that through it all, Assemblage 23 can still spin a haunting, soulful ballad in the vein of 30 kft.Additionally, the Deluxe Edition serves up some great original tracks not available on the standard release, rounded out by a pair of excellent remixes, one from 23db’s own Burikusu, and a club-friendly remix of Greed from the inimitable KMFDM.
Overall, Compass is a solid effort that deserves a place in any Assemblage 23 fan’s collection.While those seeking a return to the darker, harsher sound of earlier albums may be left wanting, there’s certainly something here for everyone.
01. Smoke 02. Collapse 03. Impermanence 04. How can you sleep? 05. Spark 06. Leave This All Behind 07. Alive 08. Greed 09. Angels & Demons 10. The Cruelest Year
Similar Artists:, VNV Nation, Seabound, Icon of Coil.
Agonize: Open the Gate to Paradise
[Reviewed by Mike Wimer]
This is remix single with 4 tracks of Open the Gate and 4 tracks of To Paradise.......interesting idea. Heaven (paradise) and Hell......it's a basic idea on good vs evil, but.......oh, where do I start?????
Now, maybe I've been around too long, or maybe my ears just need a rest, but this was one of the "normalest" sounding noiz-melody ideas I've ever heard. It's like a recipie: take 1 part Virus sounds, 1 part sampled drum loop, and one part distorted male vocal (and what the fuck is that accent? it's that annoying sound that makes the word ME sound like MAAAAAYYYYYYY.....UGH)
I've love to say that the vocals on this had spoken to me in some way, but they didn't. "Open the gates to Hell" is something I'd expect to hear in a heavy metal song, not Industrial....remember, most of us are Atheist or Pagan (neither of which believes in Hell)......and the other song repeats the words "I'll take you to paradise"......yet another thing that neither believe in (you might as well have said HEAVEN and kept it simple, like a Brittany Spears song writer would do)
I'm sure it sounds like I'm picking on Agonoize........but I need to make this clear: These thoughts are how I feel about a LOT of bands out there. TOO SIMPLE, TOO DATED, TOO AVERAGE.......I guess that hearing the insipid vocals on this just got my goat. This release is yet another reason for me to question the fact that ANYONE can put together music on a computer these days.
Not like in the old days when you had to save money and SUFFER for your craft (I slept on the floor for 2 years because I bought keyboards instead of a bed….Wow, Déjà vu?).....this is simply NOT the case anymore. Now-a-days, anyone can put together music AND have it mass produced at a CD manufacturing plant............there, now that I've made myself sound like the old man sitting on the porch yelling at kids to "get the hell offa my lawn!"......I'll shut up now.
Al-Wahaar Dhin: The Third Power of Alfta
[Reviewed by: Peter Keller]
Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Another offering from the dark hinterlands of Sweden, this is a side project from the MZ. 412 camp (it is not however, from the prolific Nordvargr). For fans of Muslimgauze, this will sound like a familiar concept; Arabic samples with repetitive beats, which in this case, are self-described as “rhythmic mantras.”
If you want to carry the comparison a bit further, this project doesn’t carry its weight next to Muslimgauze. The rhythms of Al-Wahaar Dhin do have an insistent galloping pace, the style of which might suit well for an Ant-Zen release, but there is no further innovation or development.
The insistent quality starts to wear thin as the minutes click on by, and eventually fall into pure tedium. While Muslimgauze can be faulted for carrying the same rhythm structure for too long, the way they are constructed is more engaging, sampling Arabic instruments and field sounds into looping patterns that are unique and surprising.
Aside from some vocal samples of recitations from the Koran, Al-Wahaar Dhin offers nothing other than straight electronic rhythms that are not interesting enough for the mind to be coaxed into a trance, which I assume to be its justification. I expected something more, as the label it’s on, Fluttering Dragon of Poland, has put out some great dark ambient music, but this will end up relying more on the cult cache of the members than on the actual musical output. I would recommend anything by Muslimgauze over this.
Armageddon Dildos: Morgengrauen
[Reviewed by: Peter Keller]
What’s this, the Armageddon Dildos are back as well? To refresh everyone’s memories, Armageddon Dildos were electro pioneers, propelled into stardom in the 80’s by Frankfurt’s EBM/Techno overlord, Talla 2XLC. Ewe Kanka and Dirk Krause combined to create a hard upfront club-style electro/EBM, but with a tongue-in-cheek attitude (immediately apparent with their name, which is a slang term for intercontinental ballistic missiles). After peaking with their masterpiece “Homicidal Dolls,” they continued on, evolving their style but lacking the critical acclaim of their early works. Finally, in 2000 Dirk left, and the band was thought to be finished.
Now it is 2004, and Ewe is back, sans Dirk, with a more polished and tidied-up Armageddon Dildos. The aggressiveness of the guitar flourishes are absent, relying on an entirely synth-based model of electro, combining robotic beats with shiny synthpop elements, and mixing up the tempos between calmer, more atmospheric tracks to driving club anthems. Another change is the employment of Swedish vocalist Malin, adding a gentler touch to some of the tracks.
However, despite the quality of the tracks, it is all surface; the attitude that A.D. had in the past brought their music up to another level that few had cared to venture to. Now, sadly, because they now seem to work in earnest and of the new-found polish, their work becomes indistinguishable from all of the rest of the myriad of thumpy electropop bands. That is too bad, as they were one of the more unique bands of the past.
Butterfly Messiah: Eternal
[Reviewed by: Peter Keller]
Here is a case of not letting the cover fool you. Looking at Butterfly Messiah’s package design it says “dark ethereal gothic.” But the music inside seems more suited to be on Alfa-Matrix, rather than a Projekt act, or in this case, Fossil Dungeon.
Much more club-oriented now than on their first album, “Eternal” propels with smooth bouncy synthpop rhythms with ethereal female vocals, with a few slower tracks adding atmosphere and introspective flair to book-end the poppy hooks.
Stylistically, it hovers in the middle ground between the witchy electro-goth of Switchblade Symphony and the pure synthpop of Epsilon Minus. Each track is solid, managing to both capture the darker elements of the goth stylings without being too self-referential and the pure drive and energy of electro/synthpop without being too saccharin.
There are plenty of female-fronted electropop acts out nowadays, but this has a slightly more sanguine sound than the others, with a focus on more esoteric explorations, managing to both put you out on the floor as well as stick in your head afterwards. It their well-crafted nature that will put them up above most of the others out there. Recommended for those who want a little more out of their club music.
Cesium 137: Elemental
[Reviewed by: Mike Wimer]
With the first song building up to a nice syncopation rhythm, and then a BOOM of the bass drum hitting you square between the eyes......you WILL find yourself bobbing up and down to the beat (whether you want to or not!)
This album was arranged in a very interesting way though........it was all produced by people that have classical training in instrumentation. And in a weird way, it shows! Being all electronic dance with nice beats and bass lines and some nice synthesized violin pad sounds, but with an underlying "classic" feel to it.......not what I expected at all BUT enjoyed immediately! More bands should be looking at WRITTING songs, not just making cool sounds.....and Cesium 137 has shown that they can do just that.
When Collide hit the scene several years back with Chasing the Ghost......I was dumfounded! Who was this band that I had written off as "typical" when I heard their first albums? And how in the hell did they figure out a way to make sensuality and sexuality come thru so powerfully on the new music they were releasing?
Well, jump ahead to today, and the release of their new 2 CD remix album called Vortex.......this cd takes them to a new height. All the songs that you have come to love from them over the last few years are now remixed by some of the multiple genius' of the industrial-gothic-noiz scene. Some of the notable remixers are: Amish Rake Fight, Wade Alin (Christ Analogue), Cylab, hEADaCHE, and Rhys Fulber (Conjure One and Frontline Assembly).......pretty impressive! Not to mention that they also do some new tracks for fun AND a cover of the Love and Rockets song Haunted (when the minutes drag)
Do yourself a favor.....buy this! Sounds like it would be fun to have sex to......*did I just say that out loud?*
CTRL: Lose the Image
[Reviewed by: Mike Wimer]
Holy shit! I had never heard of these guys before, even though, now that I've done some research they actually have releases before this.......these guys are GREAT!!!! Imagine a band that has that 80's sensibility for putting together Clan of Xymox (circa Medusa) melodies and then has the vocals of Mesh or De/Vision over the top......very cool!!
Then in another track they'll sound like a hard version of a Wumpscut song, but with Depeche Mode vocals......amazing! This release hit me totally from left field (just the way I like it)......I put in the CD expecting to hear a noiz band or something (with a name like CTRL) and instead I found my new favorite for this month!! I love it when that happens.
Notable tracks: Truth - Departure - Left to Find
Decree: Moment of Silence
[Reviewed by: Peter Keller]
Decree is headed by Chris Peterson of Front Line Assembly, who about 7 years ago put out their debut album “Wake of Devastation” that was noteworthy for its singular vision of bleak brutal bombastic noisy industrial. There was some similarities to his other side project Will, which he did with Rhys Fulber of FLA, although not as many Wagnerian symphonic structures were used, instead ripping a brash swath of incendiary noise that left little standing.
After a lengthy absence and a personnel change, Decree is back. And little has tempered their vision or execution. This as close to the power-electronics territory of Cold Meat Industry that Metropolis is ever likely to get, with a vocal delivery and angry tension similar to CMI’s Institut. On “Moment of Silence” there are a few breaks, a few tracks of storm-cloud-filled atmospheres that threaten and quiver with the tension highly taut wires.
Then the clouds rip open, unleashing a torrent of acid rain that melts everything in its path. This is a raw bombastic album, and is the noisiest thing Metropolis had ever put out. And despite its singular vision, the execution is varied enough to maintain interest throughout, employing different tempos and rhythm structures (even drum-and-bass on a couple tracks, which ended up being some of the noisiest tracks on the album), and interspersing pure ominous atmospheres which allows you to take in the expanse of scorched earth left behind on other tracks. If you like your industrial dark, raw and with a heavy fist, revel in the bleakness of Decree.
Faith & Disease:
[Reviewed by: Mike Wimer]
Faith & Disease have been a Seattle local favorite Goth band for years, and with this new release I think that they have really hit on something cool. Imagine the slow depression of Joy Division or Section 25 but with Female vocals, akin to Natalie Merchant (Sorry Dara, you probably hate me saying that?) but with more feeling and sultryness (is that a word??? hehe)
There is a really cool remix of Halo at the end done by DA Sebastian of the band Kill Switch Klick wich reminds me of the background loops used by Smashing Pumpkins on the Mellon Collie & the Infinite Sadness cd......which is a REALLY cool feel to a remix for a Goth band......well done DA!
Notable Tracks: She's Got a Halo - Between the Folds - Girl at the Window
First Muman Ferro: Guernica Macrocosmica
[Reviewed by: Peter Keller]
After a few cassette and CDR releases, this is the first proper CD release from F.H.F., an act from the Ukraine, part of the Ukraine Dark Syndicate network. In this release, a different kind of dark ambience is created--combining drifting floating dreamlike sequences with haunting treatments of melancholy popular Ukraine music blending together to evoke a dark sentimentality and nostalgia. They prove that there still can be innovation in dark ambient music by infusing melody and ennui to a genre known more for cold deep drones.
Frequency Construct: Deviant Behaviour
[Reviewed by: Mike Wimer]
If you like the distorted vocals and 16th note baseline of most of the DSBP releases, you're gonna like this one too! This is straight up follow-the-bounce dance industrial that Tommy T is famous for giving us over the years.......in a world where FLA and Skinny Puppy have both gone "guitar", FC comes out with this release to remind us that that some bands are still out there doing the old style (very well I might say)......it's nice to see that some things don't change!
If you like Skinny Puppy, circa 1984, then this will tickle your nostalgia bone........some of these songs follow the "Assimilate" style and others follow the "the Choke" ideals......but made with current synths and drum machines. Lots of messages about Suicide and Genocide.......
Notable tracks: A New Beginning - Loaded - Infected - Planet Genocide
Frontline Assembly: Vanished
[Reviewed by: Mike Wimer]
This newest release from Metropolis Records includes 5 songs on it (2 remixes of Vanished, and 3 b-side songs) and it probably one of the nicer singles to come from FLA in the last several years. I like the faster pace they put on this as compared to the album version. It's much more dance floor friendly now......
I have been really impressed with FLA's ability to come out with some good old fashioned industrial. I guess that if anyone could do it, it would be these guys. You know, I'm a big fan of innovation in music, BUT sometimes I just wanna be able to hear something cool and "old" sounding......this is it!
Hoedh is one Thorn Hoedh Thiel, a vastly underrated artist in the dark ambient realm, whose past work has been some of the most melancholic and sanguine soundscapes that I’ve ever heard. His previous album, “Hymnus” was the most successful evocation of longing ever attempted in the electronic musical realm.
Now we are left with his last album, as he passed away mere days after putting on the final touches to what will be his last musical testament. The closely personal and introspective mood opens up to more vast inner spaces, pulling you in and out of multi-layered dimensions, giving a sense of the depth of omnipotence of the spiritual essence that holds inner and outer space together.
These are glacially drifting passages that ebb and flow with spirits flickering about. Despite the overall meditative calm, the quality of the sounds shift enough to maintain interest, making it for a quite an engaging and intriguing listen.
A very basic comparison can be made to other more well-known dark ambient artists like Lustmord, but a more studied listen will reveal a different depth to Hoedh’s work, one which places more emphasis on evocative sounds and moods, rather than simply carving out a dark area. A more fitting likeness would be to another little known ambient soundworker, Tehom, whose body of work was just as personal and as unfortunate as Hoedh in that the creator, a Croatian soldier, died after a couple of outstanding releases.
It is somehow this fact that makes these releases more appealing, knowing that there will be no more of these little faceted gems, serving as a reminder of how fleeting and precious life is. “Universum” is one of the best dark ambient albums I’ve heard in quite a while, and it is sad to see that a talented musician went far too soon.