It feels like a long time since I last did one of these. This week it is time for my usual monthly rundown of my top ten tracks from the past month or so. I struggled for a list for this month, too. Any suggestions for new music I should be listening to or hunting out, please let me know…
How on earth did I ever miss this track before? I'm aware of SCS (through his Eric Gottesman's more recent project Everything Goes Cold), and I've only got this track today thanks to the free download of odds'n'ends that accompanies the pre-orders of the new Cyanotic EP (which rather worryingly, I already had every track except this one). Anyway, it's a brutal takedown – with tongue-firmly-in-cheek – about life in the industrial scene, and as it happens might well make a cracking dancefloor track, too…
A Violent Emotion
Of the various new EBM/industrial releases (this, Faderhead, Imperative Reaction for starters), only this album has not disappointed. While the others are really rather patchy, this album is stuffed with brilliant tracks that take the ideas from the previous album and take them way beyond what was perhaps expected. My favourite track keeps changing, but I think at the moment it is this one, more melodic than the anger that fuels many of the other tracks, and also all the better for the lack of vocal effects, too.
I Cry EP
I wasn't especially keen on the idea of this track when I heard about it initially, but when played live at the recent gig it actually turned out to be pretty damned good – Jay from Deviant UK's vocals are a good fit with the streamlined, sleek beats that Rotersand put behind him, and it all makes for yet another great Rotersand track.
It's taken months, but I finally "get" this album. A lot better than I initially gave it credit for, various tracks are now finally leaping out at me for attention, but it's this one that really has me scratching my head over how I didn't appreciate it more in the first place. Rather insubstantial to start with, it eventually builds into something that might resemble how a chorus of angels is meant to sound.
Devils In My Details
A number of listens later, and I'm still having trouble getting my head around this album. While the album is one long, continuous whole (each "track" flows into the next, with at points it being difficult to notice the join), there are a huge number of styles and influences all jostling for space in an album just forty two minutes long. The biggest shock is the percussive attack of the opener Shhh, with every other instrument (including ohGr's vocals) all pushed below the drums in the mix. In some respects is reminds me of old-school Ministry, but either way it's the best track heard from the 'Puppy camp in a good few years.
Pray Vote Donate Buy
Sounds From The Matrix 007
I've really liked just about every Diskonnekted track so far, and this one is no exception. Nice timing, too, I guess, with the US Election today – this opens with a lengthy sample of what sounds to be a Christian fundamentalist praying for "their" version of America to happen. Otherwise, other than the repeated mantra of the title, the track is simply a very good trancey-EBM track that takes a while to get into it's stride but is worth sticking with.
Leave No Trace
This coming Thursday I finally get to see Anathema live (at Sheffield Academy 2), on their current semi-acoustic tour to promote the similarly semi-acoustic album Hindsight – a collection of reworked older songs and one new one. Of many brilliant tracks on the album, it's this one that really is the pick – this version is heartbreaking, even more so than the original. In the best possible way, of course. Roll on Thursday.
For one reason or another I've been listening to this band a fair bit again of late, but it's always this track I go back to first. A near-perfect synthesis of everything that is so brilliant about this band – the doomy, oppressive atmosphere, the sheer control and restrained fury that courses through the bitter lyrics, and the gorgeous chorus. Not everything "doom" metal based has to be uncommercial – this could and should have crossed over far more than it ever did.
The Way of All Flesh
It's been a while, but French metallers Gojira are at long last back. Nothing has really changed from previous album From Mars To Sirius, so if you weren't taken with that don't expect this to convert you. Everything is still in it's right place, though – the chugging riffs, the bellowed vocals (that generally actually have something to say) and some semblance of a tune, too. Now if only they'd tour on their own…
Another gig coming up soon is the Damnation Festival, and setting aside Carcass for a moment (who I'm obviously intending on seeing), I'm really looking forward to seeing what these guys are like live. They've been around since the early 80s, bringing kick-ass thrash metal, and after a few years away they returned last year with an album that contained this track – a thrash track so good it should have sent all the new thrash bands back to school.