Son of Rust - "Silicon Gene"
By Mike Ventarola
Justin Coope - Lyrics, Lead Vocals,
Electronic Music Ben Purdy - Lead Guitar, Electronic Music, Vocals Michael
Pacheco - Vocals, Electronic Music Tad Heppner - Lyrics, Vocals
Portland, Oregon is home to this innovative band that have
become the highlight at www.riffage.com. These young men have so impressed the
fans and ultimately the honchoâ's at Riffage, that the company hand
picked this band to be a part of their promotional CD. Their just released
Silicon Gene showcases their ability to render impassioned love lost
yearnings, angst and descriptive observations about our decaying sensibilities.
It is rare that a dance tune can carry the emotional impact that has been
accomplished on this disc. This band not only achieves that pinnacle, but
transcends the notion about industrial music being heartless and devoid of
The microscopic DNA graphic looms ominously from the cover,
hinting to the symbiotic absorption this group will have upon the listener
while also being indicative of becoming machine made elements in man's future.
Track one opens with, Silicon Gene. This an electronic heavy drum bass
dance cut that pays homage to the computer whiz kids of today. In essence, the
machine obsessed type of people who live for electronic stimulation and
interaction exclusively. The vocals are not the strongest on this track, but
the harmonics and samples that are blended into the mix are significant enough
to make you want to dance.
I Can't Wait is a heavy industrial cut, reminiscent
of NIN, which deals with the angst of love. Again, the vocals are a bit weak.
The true star of the music is the danceable composition that pounds with wall
to wall heavy rhythm that one cannot ignore its front end diva like placement.
One could surmise that the electronics play as the female lead to this sound.
Darkly brooding in ballad like fashion, What Am I Now deals with the
tome of machine made parts that replace the human organs as seen in today's
medical profession. It raises the question of self classification after
pondering the issue of being an organically created machine. This is a unique
reinterpretation of a Kafka like nightmare that is no longer science fiction
but a fact of life. The vocals are good on this cut and are used to maximum
Whatever It Takes brings us to the neurosis of one
who is emotionally willing to become a chameleon in order to obtain the object
of love's affection. This is a mid-tempo groove that incorporates scratches,
Euro-pop and industrial riffs that make it another danceable cut. The
ineffectiveness of being a love chameleon is further explored in I Can't Be
Sane. The depth of self loss and loneliness due to this type of subjugation
is clearly written and examined in this mid tempo Kraftwerk/NIN emotional
hybrid tune. This song is a declaration towards purging events and people who
have misappropriated aspects of one's soul.
Common Ground, a slow dark Gothic ballad with an
industrial trip hop flavor, employs good vocals to make this a nice midnight
dance club cut. The electronic soundscape moves across the speaker placement
giving rise to the sensation of motion. This is the jilted lover who pleads for
reconciliation in a sad fervent codependent way, but somehow realizes it will
never come to pass. Lyrically, this track is more poetic in description with
just enough ambiguity to allow the listener to come up with their own
interpretation. One of my favorite cuts, Disturbing Universe, is devoid
of vocals except for the usage of samples. An especially humorous dialogue
sample at the opening of the song makes buying this album worth it just for
that alone. We are repeatedly informed via sound bytes that "this is indeed a
disturbing universe." A declaration of a generation who have witnessed the
decimation of our planet by the greed mongers without a care for the future to
come. At the same time, it highlights the annihilation we impose on the hearts
of those we love. It doesn't seep into mawkish gloom, but pokes fun at this
reality. This is accomplished with another humorous sound byte of current icon
Homer Simpson at the end of the song. It is a dance track with all the right
elements for industrial club play.
This Time I predict will be Son of
Rust's big hit. It opens with a nod toward Company B's Fascination but
then segue's into an erotic dance tempo with expertly reverbed vocals that are
now in full control of the range of the music. Some sampled moaning and love
play are interspersed throughout. The erotic nature of the song is made
somewhat more heartbreaking due to the poetic lyrics dealing with betrayal.
From this lyrical vantage point you are aware that the orgasmic groans are
playing out like a tortured memory as opposed to titillating fantasy. Another
NIN flavored recording, The Devil Inside Me, presents with compressed
vocals, dance beats and intelligently placed samples. It extrapolates the
harrowing experience of love yet again, only this time giving up and giving in
to "a lonely hurting hell that can never leave."
Strange pulls out the stops with the trip hop
techno/industrial hybrid. The song deals with finally reaching a point of self
actualization during the grieving phase of lost love. "I woke up in the middle
of a scream/tearing down the walls of this sentimental scene." Just Once
reminded me of Noel's Silent Mourning during the intro opening. This cut
has been re-worked with extra reverb on the vocals. Sampled dialogue is placed
at various points. We are warned of "doors opening that can lead to simple
pleasures, be it heaven or hell." It is a dance tune that could also
effectively become another big hit for this group.
The mesmerizing fact is that these four young men managed to
create an industrial dance sound that is unique and infectious without the aid
of a major studio label. Equipment that is outdated by about 5 years has been
stretched beyond imagination to sound like it is up to the minute technology.
The composition through the electronic medium is the star of this disc with the
young prodigies the willing and expert master and servants. Unlike other
industrial artists, Son of Rust truly create a multitude of hybrid sounds that
are layered beneath the veneer of each song. They brilliantly experiment with
all types of musical labels and rework it to fit their agenda. The absolute
dedication to their craft is more than evident on each cut. Every member
masterfully asserts their talent on this production and will earn them many
fans in this musical genre.
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