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/

Sci-Fi Society is the latest release from German act Dedalos, whose home town is Saarlouis.

Rev up the synth as we start with the title track,“Sci-Fi Society”. This transcendental piece is techno inspired with piano interludes and electronic graduations. it really does have an ultra modern feel to it and could be set to a futuristic utopia.

“Eyes” is quiet frankly very creepy. A dead beat with a deep voice droning over the top about ‘beautiful eyes’ as you listen to the lament of this disturbing fellow. An expression of love or a regret of what never was?

Grim electronic tones bring in “Darkness”. This is a sombre synth piece with generous swells in tone and texture as it builds a soundscape. Then best I can describe it is like being in a car at night. It is dark and yet you see the flashes of light from the street lights and other vehicles illuminating you unexpectedly.

Dedalos is more of a spoken word artist, over the music like a modern-day beat poet. “We Are Ice” is about holding onto your humanity, that we need to feel and not becoming frozen inside.

dedalos2
Dedalos

“Parted” sounds grandiose and yes, a little sad and retrospective. The feeling something has been lost and the search goes on to find whatever it is, emotions or people. This guides you on your journey.

“Dedalos x ElektroTerapi” isn’t the name of the song but I am not familiar with the Russian cyrillic. ElektroTerapi is a singer and she lends her vocals to this number in Russian. Woohoo, I understood the word Vodka! This song goes through burst of energy and quiet moments with the building emotions. She has a sweet voice.

This is another synth piece called “Desire” with again no vocal intervention, as it builds your anticipation and you feel the joy the musician does for the music itself, Next the keyboard leads you to “Water” where you feel the music pulling you under, as it ebbs and flows

“Dance At Midnight” is a return to the techno beat and I almost think I am listening to Swedish electronic aficionados, Covenant. A nice constant wubbing beat with a good amount of programming.

The final number is “Lifetime” and this is the longest track on the album, coming in at 8 minutes flat. It is reflective and soft and yet shimmers in it’s own way. There is a play with discordant tones which in no way detracts from the sound of the piece.

This is very much really an instrumental album with a few vocals added to bring balance and interest. Dedalos obviously enjoys music that not only moves him but makes him move. Dance beats are never far away from many of these but they are far more ambient than hard-core techno. If I had to say anything at all about this album, it would be that this is like a journey, where you are being taken through the emotions that connect us as living beings.

https://www.facebook.com/dedalosofficial/

https://dedalosmusic.bandcamp.com/album/sci-fi-society?fbclid=IwAR2jAryFgeUOadovRVFkNzSwgpjYTIM9cl5S5S2brWT0zt3o1jRh1orTDfw

https://www.instagram.com/dedalos_music/

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/