CD Review

Faetal – “[sic]”

By JHR

[sic]I've been putting this off for months. Long enough, in fact, to have forgotten what Faetal sound like. Renewed first impressions: processed guitars in the metallic German style with some clattery drum (glam) racket that sometimes gives way to a clumpy overdriven breakbeat that the Electronic Doorbell Mob seem to like, which is in turn chased down the street by an interesting guitar-solo and some pleasingly widdly prog-rock fashion (turn to the right) monosynth. An entire gothnite in a shade under six minutes, which is pretty excellent value given it saves the bother of paying to get into some foul pit of an alleged club thronged by bastards running on filthy cider, wife-beater or disturbingly coloured tart-fuel whose ugly footwear is glued to something that might have been a carpet in a previous life by a concoction that's equal parts lager, vomit and desperation. And then they dance.

Well, you could call it that were you in an especially charitable mood. Instead it looks like a diseased lurching and flailing of hair extensions, limbs, metalwork, clothing appendages and lit cigarettes. (What the FUCK is it with the waving lit tabs about thing, eh? You'd think that in an environment rammed with unlikely hair held up with Kyoto-threatening amounts of extra-bastard hard hold and expensive clothing made from a variety of fragile synthetics, even the most craven (A) of the shivering and sweating nicotine addicts would be capable of some small measure of self-awareness and maybe moderate their foul suckings and polluted exhalations, but not a bit of it. These bastards scour the planet for tabs with even more noxious ingredients than the usual cancer-sticks foisted on the otherwise blameless lungs of the passer-by. Fuckers.) As if the terrible dirge escaping from the broken home stereo at the front of the room had driven the set of them into a deep fugue and some race-memory from many millennia before had come to the fore and they were now lashing and flailing like microscopic aquatic life-forms (hydra?) hunting for food.

God. I despise drum-programming that sounds like someone bashing out a sales report on an old typewriter. 'Tell me when it's over' goes the refrain. Not soon enough, I fear. The only thing that's missing is the end of line bell. You know who just excels at that sort of gormless and spirit-crushing malarkey? Goths. Bastards.

Oh, it's in the next track. You know that tinkly noise they used in The Six Million Dollar Man (and indeed every other blasted US programme of similar ilk) to indicate some tension in the proceedings? Exactly like that. Only this time, Steve Austin isn't being hunted down by space-aliens or killer robot probes or anything exciting like that.

Ooh. Bond-like strings flourish. Nice. I think I shall go listen to the Wonder Stuff in a while. Meanwhile, the rest of the track bobbles along in a somewhat DUST-like and stadium-heroic manner. To change the mood a little (I've been posing down the pub) the next track along sounds like it could either be Covenant attempting Republica covers. Or indeed the other way up. If they exorcised the uneasy spirit of that Saffron woman and tried beating the guitars with hammers, things would become interesting and skronk-like. However, they don't and they're not.

The thing is, scratty techno and loud guitars have already been successfully mixed. If you want it with a wheelbarrow load of cheery breakbeats and some drunken shouting, then you should be able to pick up The Fat of the Land for about sixpence now. If you want it louder, faster and far stranger, then Mad Capsule Markets jolly well ought to be your bag (baby). I mean, if you were the sort of po-faced black-clad mitherer who hated anything funky or foreign or felt that the Dirtchamber Sessions had far too much of that icky hip-hop about it, then this should be about subculturally perfect.

Oh, bugger this for a game of soldiers.

Contact Information:
Wasp Factory Recordings
Post: PO Box 270, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 1DU, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0) 1242 521713
E-Mail: enquiries@wasp-factory.com
Web: www.wasp-factory.com