January saw the bandcamp release of Dirt Factory’s debut EP, Random Songs For The End Of The World. This electro industrial band is comprised of two brothers, Michael Gillman (programming and synths) and Daniel Allen (vocals and programming). More surprisingly is the fact that one lives in Brisbane and the other in Melbourne.

From the get go “Saibanetikku” is a koto drum dream that leads to an electronic beat followed by deep ahhhs and a fabulous synth accompaniment. Daniel’s modulated voice joins this simple and yet spine tingling build up. The way Michael mixes and brings in sounds and beats is subtle while still holding your attention completely.

Still on the Japanese cyber/futuristic theme, we have “Kaiju” which basically means monster. A commentary on our world, as we play with science and create the monsters that will eventually destroy us. Godzilla (Gojira) is a kaiju, created by exploding nuclear bombs. This is a science fiction nightmare which cuts a little closely to a dark reality.

DIRT FACTORY

Track three is an “Unseen Tragedy“. This is punchy with syncopation weaving throughout. The layers of vocals with different voice mixers and electronic synth is an immersive experience.

Sleazy greasy and oozing, “Give Me The Drugs“. Slower but still a ravenous beat is your pusher, making you desire more of this ode to wanting to throw one’s self into the arms of your chosen drug. Daniel will cajole and threaten you to get what he wants…. no placebo accepted.

DIRT FACTORY live December 2019 Flamin Galah, Brisbane

Will machines with AI eventually obtain “Digital Consciousness“? Is it a scientist speaking in the background? The music is again powerful and evocative with heavy drums and a futuristic feel… that Terminator efficiency, so to speak.

Robitic vocals bring you “Error Delete” with undulating electronics with such a catchy rhythm and breakout synths. This definitely brings visions of Bladerunner or Ghost In the Machine.

Slaughterhouse Shutdown” is horror movie homage with mentions of plastic for the blood splatters and no one is getting out of there alive. Haunting with gothic keyboard for ultimate creeping doom and everyone’s favourite …. fairground carnival music with screams overlayed with Psycho violin tendencies.

The final piece is “Corporate Greed” which brings to mind another song, “Corporate Slave” by another electronic Australian artist, Snog from the 90’s which was another excellent dance number. Could be the sounds of the financial world that become lost in the growing noise as the harsh beat takes over. The low vocals grace but do not take over. This loops and reverbs in a most delicious way with unbridled angst.

Remixes of “Error Delete” by Digital Anodyne (DJ Wolf Aud) and Vargil (Camilla Astrid Strand) have been added onto the end as extra bonus numbers for your listening pleasure which you are sure to enjoy.

Movies, especially in the genres of horror, science fiction and anime, have had a huge influence in the vision of these songs. Synth and noise maker extraordinaire, Michael’s roots in industrial music lay in the Wax Trax era and the burgeoning onslaught of the Belgium and German bands such as Frontline Assembly and co. However, more than this, he has not tried to ride their sound but rather forge his own, with brother Daniel firmly giving the band a voice.

The music is savvy, clever and down right satisfying. There is great depths to each song, crafted to sound bigger than just a two man effort, giving them an epic EP. As yet unsigned, Dirt Factory are far more than an uncut diamond, rough where needed and cutting edge when they could have been mediocre. These are the Random Songs For The End of The World.

https://dirtfactory.bandcamp.com/releases

https://www.facebook.com/Dirt-Factory-1924745841101379/

This year English duo, Unquiet Dead had the release of their second album, Anima Ignis. Located in Bedfordshire, Lora Maze is vocals and synths while Jason Kahl plays guitar and bass. Both are responsible for programming.

So the intro is “Flames”, which welcomes you into the style that is Unquiet Dead. Soaring harmony with a tribal sound, punctuated with the guitar, giving it a whole lotta oomph!!!

“Ash” was a single and has an almost White Zombie, Southern American feel to it until the vocals from Maze kick in, seductively slipping into your ears. A psychedelic trip in a limosine, in leather with a devil may attitude.

Yet another single off the album is “Legend”. Do I detect the use of didgeridoo? Kahl’s driving guitar work throttles this forward. And the remix by London based electro/industrial group, Machine Rox for the single is absolutely killer. Vocally this reminds me of Faith And The Muse.

Keeping up the unrelenting pace is “Puppet Strings“. You have to love the harmonization Unquiet Dead utilize. No one is pulling their strings with this danceable number.

Now for a change of pace. Of course “Cat People (Putting Out Fire With Gasolene)” was written and performed by David Bowie with Georgio Moroder back in 1981 and has been covered a multitude of times. The whole thing with covers is to make it your own. A purposely slow beginning which changes up with the power vocals.

And back to the head bobbing ferocious beats. Burn My “Head Down” is about getting out from underneath someone’s control… which might be a theme of this album. Hints of electric T-Rex litter this.

Track seven is “Bitter Pill“, where they have to be ‘careful what I say or they might put me away’ and any song mentioning pitchforks is worthy of monster movie staking.

Build A World Worth Dying For” is pure swirling vocals entwined with guitar and backed up with synths. A plea to make this world a better place that we know it can be. A beautifully crafted song with and equally beautiful sentiment.

The synth sound mimicking a theremin in “Is This War?”, Is almost hypnotic. Not the fastest track but this will definitely keep the audience entertainered, especially waiting to hear Maze’s vocals to take them away.

I Can Hardly Wait” is slower, more dirge style piece which drags the corpse along behind it still kicking. Languid guitar riffs bubble in the cauldron.

Last track is “If You Don’t Want Me” and true to form, if you aren’t wanted, there are no constraints on what you can do and be who you want to be. This fades to a mantra of almost southern Baptist proportions.

On Bandcamp, the band have quoted Toyah Wilcox as saying ‘Really rather remarkable’. I can tell you now that in the music scene, Toyah is a very hard woman to impress as she is a bit of a perfectionist.

Whatever style you want to try to place these two, it is undeniable that Unquiet Dead are really very talented. They take the psychedelic sounds of a bygone era and marry it to a modern electronic/ industrial genre with those amazing vocals to create something just a little special.

The bastard child of Bolan/Bowie/Eno and Inkubus Sukkubus with no apologies. Check Unquiet Dead out.

https://www.facebook.com/unquietdead/

https://open.spotify.com/album/0KO0hqCUtvxZaA0BrNIuZ7

https://unquietdead.bandcamp.com/releases

http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1321653244?ls=1&app=itunes

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B077YC5SPC/ref=sr_1_1…

Distorded Void is the Russian label bringing you the new album, “Trakl Trauma Tracks”, by Eumourner, an Italian musician.

Eumourner has 6 tracks to convey his historical story, set in World War 1, all in the form of music. Someone commented the album cover was creepy…. but then that is what happens when we exhume the dead.

“Track I. Der Schlaf” is like moving into darkness and the unknown. The sound scape builds and undulates with impending doom. Unseen and unnatural creatures chitter as a voiceover announces details of the Great War.

Cuckoo clocks and chimes bring on “Track II. Stunderlied”. It s0 the feeling of desolation and swirling loss in a terrible fairytale with wind swept whistles intermingling with musical box tunes, until the mood changes and becomes more insistent.

Like the muffled horns of Valhalla blasting into the void heralds “Track III. Neil Krupp und Krieg”. This could be the rumbling of giant mortar cannons on the Eastern front, the orders to move forward into a hell never seen before by mankind. A machine churning through men and forever changing them and sirens sound marking the hostilities.

“Track IV. Grodek” is the longest track at over 10 minutes long. It is not so much the sounds of violence but rather, the spirits of men leaving their tortured bodies, or at least this is what it feels like to me. The terrible aftermath left on a battlefield, which few forget amd even fewer wish to repeat. The lament of ghosts of the fallen, crying for what they have lost.

Birds chirp and maybe chimes or cow bells in the distance. We hear the words of Georg Trakl‘s poem “All Roads Lead To Black Decay” wavering over this piece, “Track V. Landschaft”. It sounds so calm and yet there is a sudden burst of a gatling gun to break the serenity.

“Track VI. Die Ungebornen Enkel” closes this album. It is the void filling with near distant rage and cacophany with pieces of violin flitting in and out before a plateau, decending into unearthly screams of that which sounds not human. Oppressive and swelling. The character, Trakl’s descent into madness, with his overbearing feeling of depression due to his inability to cope surrounded by the damaged and massacred, fueled by his overdose of cocaine, pulling him into the depths of hell. It finishes with the innocence of children singing and the music box.

For the uninitiated, Georg Trakl, born in Salzburg, Austria was a poet who suffered from depression for most of his adult life and found refuge in the army life as a trained pharmacist, until the beginning of the Great War where he found himself serving in the Austro-Hungarian army.

While in the Battle of Grodek, against the Imperial Russian Army, he was forced to look after approxiamately 90 wounded soldiers, which overwhelmed him and Lieutenant Trakl attemped to shoot himself, however was thwarted and resulted in his being hospitalized. Not long after this he was found dead of a cocaine overdose.

Eumourner has taken a small piece of dark history and put it to dark ambient and experiemental music, to paint you a life cut short in a time of war due to mental breakdown, even using the poets own style of evoking spirits in the quiet recesses of what is not said. It is an evocative soundscape on a grand scale.

https://distortedvoid.bandcamp.com/album/trakl-trauma-tracks

https://www.facebook.com/DistortedVoid

Third Realm are back with a brand spanking new album and I have been lucky enough to have been listening to it before the release date, thanks to the main driving force and frontman, Nathan Reiner.

Since 2000, Reiner has been creating music with this project and the latest album is out on the darkTunes Music label with bandmate, Luis Felipe Blanco, from their hometown of Buffalo, New York.

Let the insanity ensue with “Bipolar Pop” featuring CHIASM. Emileigh Rohn is the solo artist behind CHIASM, an electro/darkwave project but here backing up Reiner. Slower more deliberate beat with the atmosphere that you could be stalked by some sex crazed (well there is a little sensual moaning) porn pop princess or prince. This is still raw in its electonic style which is a nice way to start.

‘I tried to be myself and suffer…’ is the start of the chorus, “Be Myself” which I am guessing is the fear of putting your true self out there…. and then finding rejection or indifference. I hear hints of Chris Pohl‘s Blutengel influence, especially vocally which is no small feat as many wish to be Pohl but often fail.

The first single from the album is the amazing, “When The Sun Goes Down”. Third Realm couldn’t have picked a better single to introduce their latest work with. Totally danceable and more to the point, you will find yourself singing away in no time to the vampiric chorus. The beat is driving and the vocals just weave themselves into pleasure centre of your brain.

Fourth song off the rank is “Banshee” which gives a slight nod, it feels, to Sisters Of Mercy’s “Vision Thing” crossed with Blutengel‘s flare for the dramatic supernatural.

“Gazing At The Stars” is a ballad with a beat. It’s a sweet ode to dreams of love and wishing. It is poignant tribute and the synths sing out true over this catchy number.

A more techno start for “Garden of Lust” gets the body moving. There is a strange electronic moog like synth in the chorus which is a tad distracting while Reiner is singing but in all its an agreeable song, with spooky intonation.

“Background of My Mind” has a punky retro feel. It’s bouncy and very two fingers waved in the air in sentiment…. ie you cannot rule my life by playing me.

Love the synth beginning with a disco beat for “Who’s Really Listening?” and this lends to the claustrophobic nature of the album, fraught with paranoia.

With the release of the album is the second single, “Tides of the Sea” featuring again CHIASM. This is just a beautiful electronic number and vocally, Reiner and CHIASM interweave so well and compliment each other. Expressing love as being as constant as the tides, that pull and rush, the heartbeat and pulse of the seas.

I can hear the infuence of Marilyn Manson in “Deviant”, in the way the song is structured. The chorus is a persistant and tenacious stream of conciousness which pushes to be heard. One man’s deviance is another’s normalcy because we are who we are.

First impression of “Medusa” was it is going to be a power noise piece until the melody kicks in. Even though Medusa was a gorgon, this is another homage to vampiric beings and reminds me very much of the 90’s goth/electronic sound.

“Passion” has air light keyboards and that great constant danceable beat, with the slight VNV Nation smoothness that makes their older songs just soar. This is EBM at it’s best.

Some believe that soul mates are awaiting us, also known as “Twin Flames”. The ultimate partner that completes you and that joy can be heard in the jauntiness and pop sensibility given to this piece.

Slowly, the title track, “The Art of Despair” crawls darkly across the floor, a vision of murky oblivion. It is insistent and pokes at your reality.

The last three songs are remixes of “Bipolar Pop”, “Be Myself” and “When The Sun Goes Down”. Aesthetic Perfection‘s Daniel Graves, really injects himself into “Bipolar Pop” which brings extra raw power. “Be Myself” mixed by Subliminal Code, just leaps out as an electronic dance number and last “When The Sun Goes Down” is given the super slick treatment by Panic Lift.

Third Realm‘s sound is developing over time. Originally, a harsher industrial music style which has become a bit more electro and synth savvy but hasn’t lost any of its intensity.

It is not lost on me that you can almost taste the heavy German EBM, darkwave and gothic influences and especially, Blutengel and L’Ame Immortelle.

Nathan Reiner‘s Third Realm has unleashed for you a gothic horror album of inner demons, monsters in human guise and immortal love, all to a wonderous industrial beat.

https://thirdrealm.bandcamp.com/album/the-art-of-despair

https://www.facebook.com/ThirdRealm/

https://www.darktunes.com

July saw the release of the concept album, “Alone In The Network” by α Ori and Yakaanima. Julian A Lacroix’s experimental project is α Ori, composing dark ambient/electronic pieces. Yakaanima is Sábila Orbe from Chile who is also the programmer for his other experimental music project, the duo, Humanfobia.

Alone In The Network” is of course the title track and starts the album off ominously with its slow beat and a female, who sounds like she is in a clinical void, talking over the top.

The electronic journey continues with “Blue Lights” with its fusion of regular synth with experimental bleeps and keeps an interesting rhythm.

Now you can feel the futuristic adventure taking on form and speeding up. “Stretched Plain” is aloof and imperious. What is that woman telling us? This is a foreboding shadow.

We have entered the Twilight Zone. “Lyrical Pain” is light yet creepy. Trapped neither here nor there which leads into “Glitched Pain” which features Wildsilences. Imagine hearing breathing that is not breathing. The whispered acknowledgment of the disembodied voice of a tortured soul.

Track six is “Rose Altitude” and an electronic sound scape. A computerized heartbeat of a ghost of an organ reaches out without reply.

All computer data is essentially zeros and ones and maybe it is kept in the “Numeric Crypt“. I love the glitching, chirping sounds over the ambient music, as it just adds a new element.

Moire Hormones is the kind of track that makes you feel a little on edge with its inconsistent tones and rhythm.

The wondrous “Cybernetic Owl” breaks up the moody pall with its strange yet charming ethereal quality, indeed almost Zen like but finishing in noise.

Everyone knows these days about the Matrix, the centre of the computer mind and now “Archons In The Matrix”. This delicately reminds me also of the music in Akira.

Does artificial intelligence fear passing away and no longer existing on any plane? “Electronic N.D.E.” or electronic near death experience might be the equivalent of leaving the physical and going towards the light. But it isn’t time to go and return is inevitable to the last track, “Level 0“, the shortest and most loneliest of the tracks. It calls out to the world.

If you haven’t guessed now, the album is based on the Japanese manga/anime Ghost In The Machine, which looked at a future where a human’s conscience could be downloaded to a computer but with that came with all sorts of other issues including the knowledge of no longer being a human who could physically love because in the machine, it is cold and lonely.

Ghost In The Machine was also a huge influence on the movies of The Matrix, a futuristic society anchored to a programmer’s code.

You can both see and hear the Japanese influence on both the art and the music. This album is thoughtful and thought provoking as it digitally creates you a picture.

The album was released on Cian Orbe Netlabel and the artists, α Ori and Yakaanima are offering it to you for free. Sometimes good things can be free.

https://cianorbe2nd.bandcamp.com/album/alone-in-the-network-cior-332

DOWNLOAD ZIP FILE MP3 320 KBPS: 
archive.org/compress/aloneinthenetwork/formats=VBR%20MP3&file=/aloneinthenetwork.zip 

DOWNLOAD ZIP FILE WAV FORMAT: 
archive.org/compress/alone-in-the-network-album/formats=WAVE&file=/alone-in-the-network-album.zip 

https://humanfobia.jimdo.com/yaka-anima

https://archive.org/details/@yaka-anima_noise

https://apsu.neocities.org/alpha_ori/

https://wildsilences.bandcamp.com/

August saw the release of Chmcl Str8jckt’s latest album on Cleopatra Records. Kevin Snell, Mike Scott and Ian Omega are self claimed proponents of outlaw industrial rock, who have so far released two previous albums, 2017’s self titled and 2018’s RMX. Now we have Wrtchd Thngs to ravage our ears.

These guys, from New Jersey, love the sound of the Waxx Trax era combined with the kitch macabre horror imagery, wrapped up in metal guitar fusion.

Title track “Wrtchd Thngs” is the twenty eight second introduction to the album before what is arguably the best song on the album, “Ode To Peckinpah (Bloody Sam)”.

For the uninitiated, Sam Peckinpah was an American flim director, who revolutionized the cowboy western movies and most notably, the explicit violence. This track will be remembered for the lyrics, ‘43 dead in a sea of red‘. A really punchy little number and there is definitely a nod to My Life With The Thrill Kill Cult. It feels a bit manic in that twisted, murderous happy-go-lucky way.

Next might be an industrial live ballad, “The Only Thing That’s Real“. It feels like only the Americans, just like Ministry, can write tunes this way. The overall feeling here is that the most real thing in life is the person you are with, this being enhanced with power cords and heavy vocals from Snell.

I like the industrial, completely electro feel to “Cut Deep” at the beginning. The guitars chime in but they are far more subdued and that adds to the claustrophobia.

We always need to have songs about our favourite demon and occult denizen, “Baphomet“. This is a bang up mixture of old school Ministry and Front 242 plus who doesn’t like a bit of devil worshipping?

Fantasy” sounds like it is set in a slick world of helicopters, neon lights and hedonistic sex…. but we know this isn’t real life.

A slow and stalking build up for “Cactus” which harkens back to similar acts like Killing Joke, though this isn’t KJ and most definitely stamped with Chmcl Str8tjckt’s boots.

Always a worry when faced with a song titled, “Love“. Starts with rather subdued guitar work. Yeah not really a romantic piece but more so everything goes to hell and love gets broken

Bomb Cyclone” is a good mix of electro and guitar work with a understated constant beat and the other single. The lyrics honestly will tell you the story of the song.

Tenth in the lineup is the brooding “Black Vulture“. If you are pro Christian then you might not enjoy this. This has an interesting mixture of styles within it. Choral overtones that become tribal with a drop in tone as it become guitar heavy and dark.

Finishing track is “Meat Hook“. The psycho bombastic over tones would make Rob Zombie very proud and the horror inspired conclusion rips your head off.

It wasn’t until I finished listening several times to this album, that I became aware that John Bechdel produced this album which may also explain the atmosphere of some of these numbers. Bechdel Is currently the keyboard player for Ministry and also played for Fear Factory and one of my favourites, Killing Joke.

These guys might be short a few vowels and if Ministry, My Life With The Thrill Kill Cult etc are your thing, then donate to a good cause. The guitar road warriors who are the missing link for an industrial bygone era.

https://www.facebook.com/chmclstr8jckt/

https://chmclstr8jkt.bandcamp.com/

American industrial/EBM is alive and well, with the prime example, Slighter, also known as Colin Cameron Allrich. This accomplished musician and producer is based in Los Angeles and can be found on the Confusion Inc. label.

In May, Slighter brought forth his latest album call Automata which can be found on Bandcamp and most recently released a deluxe version with ten extra tracks.

SLIGHTER

There is nothing more memorable than a heartbeat and “The Shadows” has this familiar rhythm. This is a quiet and retrospective feeling number about things now passed and how the past can repeat itself to start off the album

In isolation, there is a loss of identity and the ability to be forgotten. Oscillating electronic tones with the vocals droning over the top of “Isolate”. This is serpentine in the way the music flows. If you can’t guess by now, this isn’t going to be the happy joy album…

“Give Me” is a solid EBM track. This features Craig Joseph Huxtable on vocal duties, who is best know for the Vancouver bands, Öhm and Landscape Body Machine. It has those wonder low vocals and heavenly ‘oooohs’. This isn’t the first time Huxtable has a dalliance with Slighter, as seen on the Erode album with the song, “Lights Out”.

The dark, atmospheric piece, “Survive”, is made even more delicious by the whispered lyrics. Colin’s enunciation is brilliant and so very crystal clear, so you can see the darkness reflected over and over again, accented with that solo guitar.

“Imbalance” is a spoken word observation about the destruction humans have caused our planet and that the Earth will go back into equilibrium without us in the end. Kadin Contois is the featured voice, speaking at us in a monotone, matter-of-fact way. Contois is an industrial musician from Virginia, formerly known as Pseudocide..

Not much is known about Floridian vocalist, Christy Hannon but her sweet tones ring true from the start of “Walls”. A hint of a swelling musical build-up and growing beat, yet this is deceiving, as the song does not get any faster.

Moris Blak is a Bostonian industrial powerhouse on the Australian label, Blind Mice Productions and can also be found on the track, “The Hunt”. Allrich gives us a much bigger vocal presence which might be influenced by Moris Blak’s heavy, moody bass beats. This is great. It’s seedy, bold, dangerous and could be picking its nose but you wouldn’t dare tell them to stop. Well worth looking for the Moris Blak Industrial Bass Edit on SoundCloud.

“Undertow” is a great gradual building, almost symphonic sounding piece. Not symphonic because of an orchestra, rather the vastness of the sound. It is so simple and yet so huge in its concept. Maybe this is also the link to tidal waters… A drop is nothing but a sea is deep, mysterious and powerful. All this is managed with simple electronics and vocals

If “Undertow” wasn’t good enough to set the hairs on your neck on end, then “A Moment of Inexplicable Clarity” just might. This is so ambient and thick with delicate vocals and synths that wouldn’t be amiss on Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds. American author, Rachel A. Desilets lends her hushed tones to her husband’s masterpiece. It has to be said, these two numbers compliment each other so very, very well.

The final track for all intent and purpose, is “Static on the Line”. This is slow and grimy, like you are stuck in a greasy, dirty hotel room, with a phone against your ear, dealing with the grainy reception.

On the deluxe version, there is a reworked version of each song, from darkwave to techno/trip hop. Soundscapes through to dark electro but it never feels disjointed or at odds with itself which is an artform.

There is a reason Colin C. aka Slighter, is featured on television programmes such as Bones and True Blood. Simply put, he is quite the evocative musician. If you like to not only hear your music but also see and feel it, then you should definitely give Slighter an opportunity to get into your ear and maybe even introduce you to some talent you may not have had the delight to be entertained by yet.

https://www.facebook.com/slighterofficial/

https://confusioninc.bandcamp.com/

For those uninitiated, Neon Insect is the personal industrial project of German based musician, Nils Sinatsch. He has been at this from a fairly young age and is a rather accomplished fellow. This year sees the release of his album, New Moscow Underground.

Thanks Nils for the Cyrillic text of the opening piece, .До свидания!, aka “Goodbye!”. Unless you can read Russian, this will be lost on you but the intro greets you with national drunken fervour and the sounds of maybe someone being tortured and gunfire……..

“Fist, Hit, Cracking Bones” however really packs a nice punch, if you can forgive the pun with this first single. Featuring KVMILLA on vocal backup, complimenting Nils‘ deeper tones, highlighting the darkness. There is very little information on this lady other than she lives in Sweden, has a YouTube channel and likes to cook.

‘If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever…..’ is a hard to forget quote from George Orwell and the start to “This Is Our City”. A build up of sound apon a constant beat, only to broken by the unearthly vocals. Defiance in the face of the ever tightening grip of authority.

Like an ode to Blade Runner, “Dear Cyborg” featuring NURS, starts in the rain with low menace as the tempo builds in an ever growing electronic screeching/squealing of song. This slightly experimental mash of sounds has New Yorker, NURS who is known for her industrial/post industrial/experimental noise.

Nils Sinatsch – NEON INSECT

The beginning of “Mazerunner” featuring Earl Squanchy (the next door neighbour who just happens to be a rapper), just really hits me as a reminder of Fields Of The Nephilim. A slower track with it’s desolate, wind swept feel, plodding along to meet whatever is left of humanity. Slightly discordant with that old saloon piano at the end.

Long Live The Queen or “L.L.T.Q.” is dark heavy stuff and previously features on the album Glitches. Featuring Claus Larsen of Leæther Strip and this time around wonderfully remixed by Slighter, this has hints of that beat made famous by The Prodigy in “Firestarter”, punctuating this number once it takes off from a sludgy beginning. Static and noise crest to a nearly unbearable level, until it drops, only to clean you up in the follow through. Having Claus Larsen singing on your track is the industrial equivalent to having the Queen of England as your personal Facebook friend.

“h4CX” has my imagination thinking it sounds like the synapses going off in the brain, this is the joy of brilliant beats with light electronic tones. It feels like a journey at light speed. There is something almost delicate about this, which I can’t quite put my finger in and its over it seems so quickly, even though it goes for almost four and a half minutes.

Second single off the album is “It’s Gotta Be Me”. This is actually a really funky number with a super infectious chorus. Very electronic and yet it just seems so smooth. Vocally this is suitably low and growly, just what the doctor ordered. Definitely nothing wrong with this song what-so-ever.

“Downtown Network” featuring New Moscow Exile Ensemble is great piece of music and it is a mixture of noise and feedback with classical instrumentation woven into the fabric. There is a most ambient air to this.

Slow and oppressive is how “Blossom” feels. Heavy like the steel in Sinatsch‘s voice for such a light title of a flower. The female voice is what gives this piece shards of light filtering in the dark folds. And so end this journey.

There is an audio drama at the end which has talented voice actors helping to tell this tale.

An Orwellian vision of the future or a dystopic view of current life? You are going to have to decide this. But while you ponder this question, you can revel in the music Neon Insect has offered up which is so very varied and rich in it’s textures. It is like looking though a fractured lens with dark hues and lengthening shadows.

This is the third album under the name of Neon Insect, however Sinatsch is a seasoned artist with many more projects under his belt as well as being a sound engineer.

We hope this is a successful venture leading to more albums. So if ruination, Orwell, cybernetics and visions in noise are your thing, then you better get this album now!!

Please note that you can order the CD on September the 15th and the Cassette on August the 30th through Bandcamp.

http://www.neon-insect.de

http://www.neoninsect.bandcamp.com

Instagram + Twitter: @neoninsect


Finally I get around to this. While I was writing for another publication, I promised one Daniel Graves, that I would review the next album he brought out. Enough of the excuses as Aesthetic Perfection did give us another new album in March, titled Into The Black.

“God’s And Gold” kicks this off and all you can think is, if this is the first track then what is rest going to be like?! This is a stonking number and deserves to be the single. It is beautifully bass heavy and Graves‘ throat ripping vocals are offset by his gorgeous, angelic voice that he sweetens our ears with. Do we need, crave or turn away from deities and riches? So bloody catchy. Richard Z Kruspe of Rammstein fame, beats us over the head with that guitar work.

The techno/ industrial beat is going to grab you and take you into the ‘Wickedness’. It is just dirty enough, you can feel the sexy smuttiness make you wiggle your arse. We like this type of wickedness.

“No Boys Allowed” could be considered the anthem track of the album and was the first single released. The title of this song may not be what you think and is in no way a sexist piece in the slightest. This is an ode to being allowed to be who you are and not being bullied into someone else’s ideal, ie a ‘real man’ and not a boy. A song that is also a powerful comment. The music is slightly off kilter, with electronic bleeps and estranged keyboard strains.

We are treated to a sweetly sung melody from Graves at the beginning of “Supernatural”. Questioning faith in the afterlife and God …. how much do you need to believe to get through this existence? It’s an almost pretty number.

“Echoes” is a far more pop orientated number, featuring Jinxx of Black Veil Brides. With a catchy chorus, this is very pleasant on the ears.

Track six features both Jinxx and one Krischan Wesenberg of a little industrial band called Rotersand (who are well worth checking out). Graves wants to know will “We Wake Up” from the dreams we have at night or if the monsters in them will consume us and drive him crazy. This is a slow measured piece, sung with a gusto that only losing sleep can provoke.

Team White and Team Black from the video ‘Gods and Gold’

“If I Die”, again is featuring Jinxx, is a more lively number, with strong guitar riffs, highlighting the fact that even in this age of connection, if we pass, will people remember us or even care that we ceased to be. The guitar work reminds me a little of Within Temptation.

Yes!!!! Hit with the electronic beat once more and we are off with “Saint Peter”. The beat fits so perfectly with the synth and as ever Daniel‘s voice modulates between sweet and sassy. In fact it creeps me out a little that he croons eerily like IAMX‘s, Chris Corner (who has a seriously amazing voice as well).

The EBM is strong in “YOLO”, which I’m going to guess is you only live once…. modern acronyms are not my strong point but then I am from the era of a childhood under nuclear threat and this resonates no matter what your age.

The last song, “Mourning Doves”, has a real 80’s sound to it. Slightly bittersweet in its sentiment and it soars in its simplicity. Again Jinxx joins in and this is a gorgeous way to finish the album.

As well as the input from Kruspe, Jinxx and Wesenberg, you can also find the guitar work by Anaal Nathrakh guitarist, Mick Kenney who also co-wrote several of the songs.

For all intents and purposes, Graves is indeed the driving force of Aesthetic Perfection and it is his talent and vision that have developed the sound from originally aggrotech to smooth EBM/industrial with a pop sensibility.

This is very much an introspective album in many ways. It questions religion, spirituality, life, death and does it all really matter in the end or do you simply accept this life and live it because you only get one shot.

Aesthetic Perfection are one hundred percent independent by self releasing on Bandcamp and Patreon. I would really encourage anyone who hasn’t listen to Graves before or not indulged in bathing their ears with Into The Black, to do so. This is a ripper and will continue to grow on you.

https://www.facebook.com/aestheticperfection/

https://aestheticperfection.bandcamp.com/

https://www.patreon.com/danielgraves

This is a busy year for the delivish industrial fellows of Eggvn. They performed this year at Wave Gotik Treffen, plus more auspiciously, have a new album out.

We here at Onyx, have been given a taste of 7 sinful tracks to whett your appetite from the band that comes from Hell with their album, Solve et Coagula.

“Fear” is the second track to start us off. We have the driving industrial beats with the tortured vocals, screaming at us to fear. The keyboard in this almost delicately writhes through the stabbing rhythm.

And then like the demonically possessed beings they are, we are served “The Seven Words”. Darkness and the creation within this world of that which lures you towards the fate of all sinners and Eggvn want to take you there. What are the seven words? You might just have to listen….

Just as darkness likes to consume the light and evil tries to usurp goodness, those with perverted desires seek to own the souls of the innocent, therein destroying their “Purity”. This is also track number seven.

“Dead Inside Me” is a heavier number and the anger is almost palpable. The hate, the fear and the loathing that lurks within the human psyche.

Listening to strains of “Let The Sun Shine In” are terrifying before Eggvn let loose. Have a feeling they want us to let the devil in… just a feeling as it is punctuated/shouted in track number 10, “Let The Devil Shine”

Eggvn

The translation of the twelfth and title track from Latin literally is “Loose and Curdle”. The satanic is strong in this one as possession continues in “Solve At Coagula”. No amount of holy water will clean away the dirty vocals and the building urgency.

“Mantis” starts with a rather famous sample, then flies into that high energy beat. This track really benefits from the vocals which push the song into another category of “Oh yeah!”. Something rather catchy about “Mantis” as the unlucky track 13 and dead last in the album.

For my money, “Mantis” is the killer track from what I have heard and contains many of the great qualities of a anthem industrial number.

All in all an interesting selection of tracks….. 7 being the number of deadly sins. If you like fast tempo, heavy industrial that you can bounce around to, then this could be just what you are looking for.

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