There is another form of techno that I have been exploring the last years. “Dubstep” is a very slow form of techno, usually based on “drum & bass” type rhythms. Much of the music is annoying to me with female vocals and happy melodies, but there is also a more dirty side to the style.
I know “darkstep” is not the term to use, as that is closer to “drum and bass”, but the description is fitting for that style of “dubstep”. Sometimes I run into the description “filthstep”, I suppose that fits the bill.
“Broken Note” is not the slowest, dirtiest, occultist artist in the genre, but it does have some excellent releases. “Dubstep” is good enough of a description here. There are not the typical speedings-up and heavy breaks on “Exit The Void”, but here you have the steady rhythm in spite of the weird beats, the typical creaking sounds and minimalist approach. Maybe you can compare this release to the relatively known project Noisia.
If you want to further explore the genre, for a darker approach (also thematically) look for Substep Infrabass; somewhat more typical for the (darker) style are Datsik and Download.
There seems to be a great ‘new’ subgenre of techno music. I have written about it before in my reviews of Oake and Kerridge.
A style called “minimal techno” seems to have a rising popularity. It sounds like the name sounds, minimalist techno. Often danceable, sometimes even 4×4 beats. (Probably) within that “minimal techno” scene (if there is such a thing) there are also projects that lean towards an industrial sound, some of these projects take their speed even slower making dark, experimental, rhythmical, well, “industrial techno”. That description as been used for many years for the “hardcore” type of techno, but what Spotify seems to call “mandible” is slow, industrial techno.
The Swedish duo Shxcxchcxsh does not seem to offer an explanation (or even pronunciation) for their project name. Their releases and track titles are just as weird. The four tracks here are called “VOOO”, “OPPO”, “POPP” and “VVOV”.
Shxcxchcxsh sometimes has a somewhat industrial sound, like on the magnificent album “SsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSsSs”, on their latest, the sound is more typical ‘minimal techno’, so a simple rhythm and not much else. “VOOO” is not the duo’s best work, but I do want to draw your attention to the project, as their material is interesting. To me at least.
Every once in a while I like to listen to old school goth rock (deathrock). A band I discovered this way is the Italian Horror Vacui.
The 2012 debut is “In Darkness Everything Will Be Alright” is -to my ears- still their best material, especially the title track.
After two more full lengths and a few minis, “Living For Nothing” has just been made available digitally (physical releases are forthcoming). 30 Minutes, eight tracks, so is this a mini or a full length?
The music is still typical for the band. One high pitched ‘gruftie’ guitar making the melodies and great ‘grave vocals’. Simple melodies, simple songs, just as goth rock is supposed to sound. Older material was slightly faster and (therefore) a bit more ‘catchy’, but again the more uptempo songs on “Living For Nothing” are enjoyable.
Thanks to Noise Receptor I heard about this release before the 102 copies were gone.
“Extraterritoriality” is a six track tape. It opens with the brutal “Cleansing Violence”, a great track. Then follow two more tranquil tracks with lyrics or lengthy samples. Recognisable lyrics and samples? The recognisability is certain with “Homecoming” which seems to be an alternative version to “Come Home”.
The latter mentioned title is the first on side B called “Entry” and is a not too extreme, but a somewhat industrial track. Next up the aggression rises again. Distorted sounds, a pounding rhythm, shouting samples and after a while aggressive vocals. “Red Emperor, White Forces” is a magnificent Am Not track. The closing track is again more ‘noisescapes’ with a lengthy sample.
It looks like it that Noise Receptor has a better eye and ear to find the thematics of Am Not’s music, so I suggest reading that review too.
Apparently a debut. I cannot find anything about this project.
In the cover there is a quote in Polish meaning ‘dictatorship is not a bad word’. The quote leads me to a Polish Wikipedia article about Chaim Rumkowski, a Jew who thought that working for the Nazis would save him and his people.
That said, HSR offers muffled noise with an industrial angle and sometimes very distorted vocals. The sound is a bit like hearing industrial while the speaker is below a pillow. There are not the high frequencies of many noise releases in most tracks, but neither is this the ‘wall of noise’ kind of music.
I prefer the more death industrial type tracks, especially when there are vocals, over the more minimalist ones and over the more chaotic (typical) ones.
Overall “Cumulative Hurt” sounds alright. It has a few descent tracks (especially the opening and closing tracks) and the rest is not bad either.
Tesco rereleased the 1996 debut album “Powerhungry” with an extra track.
“Powerhungry” is a classic in death industrial, a great album with brutal, industrial rhythms, violent vocals, but on ‘the noise scale’ closer to industrial than to noise.
The tracks have been reworked, some even stretched up and a 12 minute track has been added. It is called “Blood Is Tripping From Our Hands” (seriously) and it is a great Cleansweep track.
I have never been able to lay my hands on “Powerhungry”, so now I can get the nice looking digipack. Playing it was no problem, since it is the only Cleansweep album available on Spotify. Perhaps the other albums should be rereleased too!
Unbelievable. Here is another Henrik Nordvargr Björkk. The man releases so much music, that he has problems picking a name for all the releases it seems.
According to the label, the material was recorded during the “Svartmyrkr” sessions. I already wondered why that was released under the monicker MZ.412, since the album sounds more like Nordvargr’s “Metempsychosis” than earlier MZ.412 material. Perhaps the answer lays in the line: “that can be heard in Nordvargr´s solo efforts”. MZ.412 is a band, Nordvargr is Björkk on his own.
That said, “Daath” is similar to “Metempsychosis” (but also to “Svartmyrkr”) with here and there a death industrial tone, then more dark ambient, but mostly fairly pomp beats and sounds that seems to lean to a more martial approach every now and then. Björkk spits his brutal vocals in some variety.
In my review of “Metempsychosis” I said that it reminds of of TxRxP’s “Kainskult“, but I have this less with “Daath”. Perhaps the sound is not completely alike, or my association is different this time.
A descent album again. Out on December 21th on cd and 12″.
I got lucky. I was paging through the Tesco website when I noticed the unimaginable project name with the unimaginable album title. For some reason I decided to look up what Death Boulevard would sound like. Perhaps because the ‘blurb’ says the project is from Brazil?
“Killed By Killers” contains noise and death industrial. The sound is about as original as the project’s name and album title, but it is executed very well. Good low frequency noise, great aggressive vocals. The tracks go from relatively tranquil industrial to more Cleansweep wall-of-sound type noise. Some tracks are more sample driven, giving a bit of a GO feeling. Some of the more vocal tracks do too by the way.
The album is released on L.White and there are only 100 cds available. You can get it digitally through Bandcamp though. As I said, it is a very enjoyable album.
The productive Henrik Björkk releases material under a variety of names. Folkstorm is one of them. This project has been around for over two decades.
Quite a few Folkstorm releases are made available by Old Europa Cafe, as is “Nihil Total”. A nice digipack, limited to 300 copies.
Folkstorm is one of Björkk’s harsher projects. “Nihil Total” goes from death industrial to noise and back. Aggressive vocals, brutal rhythms. The tracks are more varied than on many death industrial releases, which is not surprising coming from Björkk.
Probably to add to the aggressive sound, the lyrics make that the project could have been name F**kstorm for this release, which is a bit of a down point to me.
Not all tracks are brilliant, but most are great. If you like aggressive industrial, you could give the latest Folkstorm a shot.