REVIEW: Massiv in Mensch - "Belastendes Material"

By J. 'Hirez' H-R

Chain Border

Belastendes MaterialI should point out now that any band that features grunty 'I gargle sharp sand and razor blades' male vocals and also ethereal gurlywurly singing is going to have Midnight Configuration mentioned somewhere in the review. Especially if the reviewer's English. Right then.

What we have here is pretty much state of the art techno-influenced, industrial-tinged, dancefloor-oriented EBM. It kicks, large-style. I can see a good third of the tracks on this album doing fine and headspinning business on the stompier dancefloors. Headspinning? Yes. There are odd samples artfully arranged entirely unlike decorative borders on a formal lawn to be found throughout. I am strongly reminded of the standout Shaolin Buddha Finger by Depthcharge because of that. But mostly because Ans Kreuz Genagelt and its shouty-dancefloor chums are equally-sized thundering supercharged disco monsters. As the tagline of R&S Records has it - Order to dance. Yes indeed.

The track that follows it, Verlust, sounds like it should be on the soundtrack for some particularly dark cyberpunk anime. Probably the bit where the stunningly attractive part-robot heroine is absent-mindedly cleaning a variety of large sidearms while staring out of the window over a rain-blasted rainbow-neon cityscape. In fact, the whole album would be equally at home on Rick (Bladerunner) Deckard's car stereo or blasting out to a warehouseload of wildly oscillating cybermuppets on an industrial estate on the outskirts of Eindhoven or Sheffield.

Strangely, I always find it easier to spot what's wrong with a record and go on about it at some length than attempt to make sense of what's right about something and make a reasonable stab at conveying my impressions of approval. This is no exception. If I'm going to compare it to anything I'd be bound to say 'Somewhat like Icon of Coil's first album, only significantly noiser in some places. And more techno-influenced' - it's got that same deftness of touch that welds four-square industrial-darkwave riffage onto a variety of uplifting techno beats and rhythms. And will also lurch from resolute Ant-Zen style ear-damage to fey Amiga demoscene synthpop within the same tune if needs be. Which thankfully seems to be regular a occurrence.

If this lot aren't already massiv(e) (Har har) on the goth-industrial-techno dancefloors of various nations, then there's something grievously wrong with the way the world works. Ok - more wrong than usual, then. As soon as I've saved this off to disk, I'm going to scour the internet for news of further recordings and European touring. I firmly suggest y'all do the same. If you like this sort of mad thing. Which you damn well ought to.

Contact Information:
Post: Artoffact Records, 1057 Steeles Ave. W., PO Box 81630, Toronto, ON, Canada,. M2R 3X1
Web: & http://

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