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

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/

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.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/eggvnofficial

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/eggvnofficial

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/eggvnofficial

Those busy lads from the north of England are back. I previously, for another publication, reviewed Auger‘s first album. Since last year, they have been making a name for themselves by touring the UK and Europe, whilst writing a new album named, From Now On I.

The newest single is a song called “Find My Own Way Out”, released on the label, darkTunes Music Group, ahead of the awaited album release.

This song is a great progressive piece of electronica/industrial with good vocals from Kyle Wilson and guitar work by Kieran Thornton. It is all nicely blended and a good strong number with a memorable chorus.

Lyrically you find a song about being pushed and let down even after putting your faith in others. In the end it’s about getting yourself out of dark places you end up dwelling in. Finding that light inside you to push forward and be the cataylst of change you need.

In a year, I can hear the difference in these guys. Their sound had matured and become much tighter which is a credit to them.

Auger have really started in earnest to cultivate a sound that is uniquely their own and it pleases me no end to say, check out these young fellas and cannot wait to hear the new album.

http://http://www.auger.band

https://www.facebook.com/AugerUK

https://www.instagram.com/auger.band

http://www.darktunes.com

https://www.darkmerch.com

http://tinyurl.com/darkTunesFB

https://twitter.com/darktunesgroup

https://www.instagram.com/darktunesmu…

https://open.spotify.com/user/darktun…

Pablo Zumarraga is the man behind the act known as Trust In None. He hails from the capital of Argentina, Buenos Aires and this year released his EP, Inhale, with five tracks in all on it.

“The Law of the Weak” is the intro track with a near imperceptible beat before a sudden explosion of guitar. I feel like I’m listening to some lost Trent Reznor track from the Pretty Hate Machine era.

A nice piece of guitar work and the second track that seems to be nameless brings in the drum machine. The whispers become musical screams that say “I never, never trust you!”. This has an extremely bluesy feel even though it is also very industrial at the same time.

pablo Z
Trust In None (photo – Zoe gouzene / @zoilandia)

“Inhale” has echos of White Zombie/Rob Zombie with the drum machine having little metal blast beats and is quite a heavy number. Lots of distortion and feedback with a revisitation at the end just to remind you of where you have just been.

The rather interesting named “Squirt”. Pablo mixes his violent whispers whilst dueling with his guitar work. This is full on rock and roll and you could roll on down the highway with this blaring out. The guitar riffs just keep on coming and persistent, spiraling out of control.

Last is the single, “The Circle of Shame”. Again you here Zumarraga’s love of the blues coming through. Heavy and dirty. The vocals are distorted and pain filled. The guitar work here reminds me of the old Soundgarden sound from BadMotorFinger

Not kidding when I say it reminds me very much of the early industrial days of Nine Inch Nails, especially vocally. This is brooding and dark and with the distorted guitar work, is indeed heavily blues influenced and yet this adds to the sinister heaviness of it all.

So if you are looking for something that ignites your blood with punk attitude and industrial smarts, then check out Trust In None.

http://www.trustinnone.com

https://www.facebook.com/tinpunks/

 

Adam Majdecki-Janicki is an artist from Darlowo, Poland, who creates ambient/experimental industrial music and he has a new album out on Bandcamp called Next Bardo.

Distortion, static and grinding/high-pitched squealing industrial is the basis of “Work, Consume, Die, Become Cremated”. A commentary of what daily life as an adult in the modern world is really like. A drudgery of endless monochrome, until the human machine fails and is no longer of use.

“The Flower Thief” is an ethereal floating experience. The almost sound of bells tolling in a strange ambient world that feels not quite in focus and drifting. What could be strings can be heard in the distance, trying to call your attention.

A slight 1950’s science fiction feel mixed with Hammer Horror style pipe organ music heralds “Melancholy Baby Dies from an Overdose of Time”. Dark gothic overtones with a pounding beat that never slows or stops but just when you are used to that beat, it disappears into the dirge, though later reprised without its former strength..

“A Thunder of Eternal Music” is like a hypnotic drone trying to lull you. The drum machine keeps time while the distortion wends it way into your brain. Most definitely almost tribal and ancient, a calling to our primitive past.

It has the avant-garde feel of Cabaret Voltaire. Being experimental means that in the end, everything is up for interpretation and reinterpretation, so what you perceive this time may not be the same on a second listen. So get a bit old school dark/ambient/electro.

http://adammajdeckijanicki.bandcamp.com/album/next-bardo

 

It is really amazing how much the gothic/darkwave scene is thriving in the Latin American countries but not so surprising as they have always been fond of their rock music.

On this note, the band Nohycit has been around since 2010. The label Advoxya Records, in 2018, released their album, Anomico. In the last month, several music clips were put onto YouTube from Anomico and this is one of the EDM/industrial pieces.

If you are a sucker for a good dance beat, then you are going to love this, especially if you like Combichrist yet it isn’t vocals heavy. The growling versus whispering vocals, constant beat and the smooth synths would not be amiss in a European club or gothic festival.

Now if this has whetted your appetite, then your next move it to seek out some more by this band. I couldn’t find out much about Nohycit but then I found out about them through Twitter (https://twitter.com/NOHYCIT1) and some things, if you are willing, are worth searching for.

 

Mach Fox (Zwaremachine) is from the USA and Ania Tarnowska (I Ya Toyah) is also from the United States of American and they have come together to give you the single “Smile That Killed A Country”, ahead of their Code Blue Tour.

Ania has a smooth and unhurried voice, while she croons and caresses your ears, inviting you into this electronic wonderland. In opposition you have Mach Fox, with his much more earthy, gravelly tones, giving this song it’s far more gritty feel.

Smile That Killed A Country – Promo video

This is sexy and kind slow but with a constant beat. There is no distant screams but I Ya Toyah whispers and cajoles like a lover with angelic tones. With a voice like that, I can believe she might smile and kill a few people by turning their legs to jelly.

Mach Fox compliments her completely vocally as they weave between each other, almost taunting each other, seeing who can pull off the most naughty sounding lyrics. Honestly, they both do really well in that department and couples grinding and gyrating on the dancefloor, getting hot and heavy would really find this heating up their ardour.

“Smile That Killed A Country” honestly makes me think back to the laconic and iconic sounds of Portishead. There is something almost otherworldly about nice laid back electronics.

You can listen to this song on Bandcamp if I have hopefully whetted your appetite and as always please support artists if you like their music.

https://zwaremachine.bandcamp.com/

https://iyatoyah.bandcamp.com/