Daniel Allen is one half of Dirt Factory and after releasing their third album, found himself in lockdown in Melbourne for quite a long time. So was born the new solo project Exo-Kult, which spawned three singles and the album, Knife Wounds, that was launched by Viral Records Australia on the 30th of October, 2021.
Apparently this is not music, “This Is Shit“. Welcome to the intro to Knife Wounds but then we are treated to hearing Allen singing in “Shutting It Down” and he has a quite pleasant voice, though we still get the obligatory growled lyrics as well. The slow beats of “Eliminate” is the list of modern life’s disappointments and the want to see it all wiped away with the sweep of a hand. “Cold” is one of the singles off the album with wandering synths over a never shifting rhythm and the anguished vocals about never belonging.
Another single is “Ready To Blow” which is more bass heavy and reminds me of late 70s industrial such as Cabaret Voltaire, which follows into “I Will Not“, a commentary on religious orders. Sludgy and grubby is probably the best description for “Dancing“, which of course is not actually very dance like at all. Voice clips of a bomb run from possibly the 1950s, informing you of how it is done as the instrumental runs in the background for “Untitled“. The last single, “Bring Out The Dead“, is one of those uncomfortable songs about human nature and violence.
The relentless synths and beats combined with Allen’s raw vocals. We bringing down the pace with the near hypnotic “Breath” and then it is straight into the more futuristic “Satisfaction“with it’s drone like quality because the ‘man’ wants you complacent. An apocalyptic future or is the future here in the dark and abrasive “Predetermined Error“?! It feels like Allen left “Crematorium” as our lucky last parting shot at the money hungry religious establishments, honestly the concept is actually is a very interesting one along with this song.
You can still hear glimmers of Dirt Factory but this is a very much stripped down affair that Exo-Kult has given us. More basic and darker in content, written in isolation but plugged into the world via the internet, watching the world drowning in a sea of intolerance, mismanagement, war and death. Wonderfully mastered by Roger Menso of Nyte Shayde Music in Brisbane and Exo-Kult is the second artist to be signed to Viral Records. You will hear from Allen soon again because the new Dirt Factory album is hitting us in December.