It has been about a year since we were first introduced to the HOSTILE ARCHITECT, who is also known as Mitch Kenny. The first single, “HOSTILE THEME“, was released in June 2020 and seems ever since then, he has continued to grow into this persona, gathering fans, airplay and signing with Brutal Resonance Records. Now Brisbane based Kenny, has his first full album to unleash onto the converted and the yet to be. This is LOWGRADELIFE.
Kicking off is “MEASURE TWICE” and the ARCHITECT is judging you and the mistakes you make more than once, If you have never heard HOSTILE ARCHITECT before then I can guarantee this mix of gravelly vocals, infectious beats and scintillating keyboards is going to beguile. Originally released as the b-side to “LOWGRADELIFE“, we have the beat heavy, “EVERY FOLLOWER A BOT“. It is a nice static crunchy instrumental piece and yet there is time for a serene, almost Japanese inspired interlude. The fourth single to be released this year was the wonderful “SEMTEX“, and I dare you to not find yourself bobbing to the beat of this. The futuristic theme that you are not not the decaying flesh that holds your spirit is backed up by the science fiction feel of the music.
The title track for the album, “LOWGRADELIFE VER.FINAL” was also the second single and as it may imply, has been further reworked for the album. From the near disco start that launches into the infectious rhythm, there is so much to listen to and still it is utterly cohesive. Speaking of reworked songs, there is also “WAGESLAVE VER.FINAL“, again was another b-side, a delightfully beat filled instrumental that flows along in a trance like way. The brilliant “DAWN OV“, yet another single, body slams you with it anguished vocals and electronics almost mimicking blaring horns, while the instrumental b-side to this single follows it up. And like all the others, “PROSCRIPT” won’t disappoint you as it winds it’s way into your ears. The single that started everything, “HOSTILE THEME“, introduces us to the ARCHITECT and soon you will be singing along I’m hostile!
The first two remixes are done by fellow Brisbane dwellers of the industrial scene. Dirt Factory with their stellar remix of “SEMTEX“, in which Michael Gillman makes the song even more angry plus a little dirtier, highlighted by those bright synths. Zane Seymour is Dream Of Machines and he gives the treatment to “DAWN OV“. Seymour has brought the vocals to the fore and yet still the synths dance beneath, threatening to overtake at some point from their zen interlude. “LOWGRADELIFE” remix is by Wollongong act Cheap Coffins and it feels electronically gritty and heavy. Then the guitars just chime in gloriously as the song wends it’s way skyward.
The Null Cell remix of “PROSCRIPT” just sparkles and is unearthly with how light it feels. Nebraska based Isabella Chains really makes this instrumental piece a rhythmic delight. The last two remixes are from Black Hole Zion and Mach Fox, the former residing in West Virginia and later in Minnesota. Second remix of “LOWGRADELIFE” by Black Hole Zion and it definitely has Ministry inspired guitars and then again a near jazz influence which would seem an odd combination but it works. Zwaremachine’s Mach Fox gives his remix of “DAWN OV” which pops and carries the Fox signature of substantial and searing electronic noise.
First off, have you ever known an act that is exceptionally talented and then when you have met them in real life, they are as nice in person as well? This is Mitch Kenny, completely. He is self effacing and has this enormous gift for music which shines through in this debut album.The mastering done by Roger Menso of Nyteshayde Music is first class, with beautiful clean tones and delicately balanced. The acts chosen to do the remixes have been equally up to the task. It would be easy to rant on with superlatives but in the end you just need to go hear it. If you appreciate good electronic music, then I think you will love HOSTILE ARCHITECT and his LOWGRADELIFE.