CD Review

V/A – “Negative Impact v0.1”

By Marcus Pan

Negative Impact v0.1Some names I’m familiar with here on this new compilation. Names like Jilt, Infinity Interrupt, Ceoxime and Things Outside the Skin. We open with Jilt’s Jilt-DJ V1 which is a drum ‘n bass track with some squiggly bits and industrial guitars. Nothing extraordinary. Nute’s ROSB gets heavy-handed with its guitars and chunky to boot. A nice stompy beat keeps things moving along with vox-touched vocals and standard, but good, industrial trappings. Greed by AM22 gets a bit funky and I’m really digging Negative Impact v.01 pretty well at this point. Infinity Interrupt[1] slows us down with their Retinal Fetish track and throws a wrench in the works of the compilation – we were moving stroppily along a moment ago, now we’re in a quagmire.

Fortunately for all concerned, Cheese Ball will attempt to rescue us from the swamp. It’s…not bad, even if BioCarbon13’s vocals tend to not really match the otherwise heavy stomp-lacings of the surrounding track. The Deformation of Saints by Off World Kick Murder Squad clocks in at just over two and a half minutes of boredom. You’d think with such a long band name their songs would be a bit longer, too. Jilt comes back with Release – which tries for a bit to pulse us back into the groove that Negative Impact began with, but instead kind of fails at it with its over the top yowls and misplaced guitar/synth hits and twirly bits.

We kind of blunder along through some dirty noise, electro-farting and such as the CD continues. The tenth track, Infinity Interrupt’s Hybrid, is a bit cleaner in make-up, but still lacks any sense of direction. AM22’s Virus saves us from the doldrums by getting catchy and even a little upbeat, a computeresque attack of keyboard licks and pulsations. Unfortunately, BioCarbon13 once again helps us lose any sense of direction and location with You Shook Me Cold thereafter. It’s a bit too muddied for my tastes and gets stuck in itself, not going anywhere far.

I’m digging Things Outside the Skin’s American Way, but I lauded their last release so I was expecting that[2]. They kicked off their last release with this track and I still dig it just as much – a rap-style movement of vocals against noisy background movements with lots of groove. Off World Kick Murder Squad again now step up with the trancy The Warmth of Morphine. This doesn’t go anywhere either, though it’s a bit longer than their previous attempt on this compilation. Experimental wind, synth pulses and such – we’re probably listening to the radio frequency emissions of a quasar or something.

Jilt’s 3rd appearance on the album – tied with AM22 and BioCarbon13 on that – is Night-Blind, which opens a little poppier but laces brooding under-scored vocals against a now-muddy pop atmosphere. Unimpressive at best and the rhythm changes at the end of this lengthy track sounds like errors – not musicianship. But AM22 shows up just before we leave and gives us Secrets – a 7+ minute electro-pop thing that isn’t nearly as satisfying as their previous showings on the disc. We close with BioCarbon13’s Shut Up!, a childish trance attempt with background and barely discernible elementary school taunts.

Overall a bit humdrum, really, with a few standouts like Virus and Greed – AM22’s funky licks provide a bit of fun here. Things Outside the Skin is a worthy inclusion as well. But overall, Negative Impact v0.1 is your typical “here’s some folks you’ve probably never heard of” and, in some cases, really shouldn’t anyway. Compilations are usually worth picking up for those few gems and to be introduced to a couple bands worthwhile enough to look further into, and if you take that attitude then Negative Impact v0.1 is about on target as any other compilation that’s recently come out, without much remembrance besides.

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[1] Infinity Interrupt’s Hybrd Still Life was reviewed in Legends #151.
[2] You Knew it All Along was reviewed in detail in Legends #152.