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…

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/

Brisbane is not synonymous with the industrial/gothic music world and yet acts have spawned from this Australian city, of which one of the latest is Failed Assimilation.

This five piece post industrial band had been working up to their debut album and have brought us the single “Wolves“.

Failed Assimilation live

Vocalist, John Green aka Johnny Daeus, wants to beseech you and drag you into the lyrics of love, hate and the void between. A winding whirlpool of a destructive relationship that is bringing out the worst personality traits from the darkest recesses of a human’s brain.

The rhythm section is held in good stead by LukeSiebzSiebenhausen on bass, powering through with Cameron Dodds bringing the heavy guitar work that pushes this number along, building and making it feel like an out of control rollercoaster.

This is all held together by the electronic wizardry of JethroJayHilliard on synths and programming.

There are four remixed versions of “Wolves“, done by various artists. The first by the American-Australian hybrid group, 11 Grams, followed by Domination Korporation (which is actually Siebz but we won’t tell if you don’t) followed by Brisbane’s Dirt Factory and Sydney’s Z-Cluster. All are so very different in their interpretation and yet they all work.

Throw in a cover of Nada Surf’sPopular” and two other original songs to round off this release.

I first remember seeing Failed Assimilation live as support for Amelia Arsenic and Snvff in 2016 and since then, have seen them perform in other venues as well as heard them first grace the airways on Dark Essence Radio.

This is a tight single to release and I encourage those who like the industrial genre to have a listen especially with all those tasty, talented remixes. Let’s see what the future holds for this wolf pack.

https://failedassimilation.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/FailedAssimilation/

https://mobile.twitter.com/FAssimilation