22 January, 2015
After their successful release of the ARTIFEX album in 2013, In_zekT had come up with another idea. The newest, over 20 minutes long extended single is made up of various compositional parts. It's an avant-garde suite, which technically could be compared to those better known from classical or progressive tracks, though In_zekT's music is definitely much more 'bratty' yet disciplined than these.
The first five minutes of the suite is built upon all-engaging dynamics. Ferocious arrangements were written for vocals, guitars, bass, drums and synths. All sounds are digitally altered however, which gives them a cybernetic-quality. The mood is aggressive, raging yet haunting and the inclusion of an EBM-like rhythm mixed with chunky guitar riffs will easily turn you into a headbanger in this pat.
Since it's also industrial, you should expect machines - their silent or very loud sounds such as clicking, buzzing, whizzing, hissing, humming etc. are a significant ingredient of In_zekT's music. These, along with saturated, dark ambient backgrounds become welcomed breaks between more turbulent arrangements. And so, the next few minutes of the single will turn your imagination on.
Then again, around 11th minute of the single, hell breaks loose again with uttermost intensity. Dense arrangements are expressed through a collaboration of heavy screams, digitalized drums, bass and chopped guitars. There's no place for spontaneity here, only discipline and order. Metal/djent fans will go crazy about the ultra fast tempo, atonal rhythm and violent formula which this part of Industrial-Scale Murder is made of.
Don't be fooled though when the follow-up comes out softer, melodious and even sentimental, thus letting the heart slightly drop its heightened beat. In_zekT knows how to shock a listener with a sound, therefore you'll definitely witness it while listening what's next.
The final portion of the single is 'the music of a vehicle', probably a bulldozer or excavator. If you enjoy environmental sounds so called 'field recordings' which are not synchronous, harmonic or pleasant for the ear, then you won't skip this part.
Technically speaking, the sound quality, the mastering and production of Industrial-Scale Murder are all brilliant - the bass is deep, the riffs are scalpel-sharp and omnipresent industrial samples are crystal clear. The separate parts link very smoothly. Yet, the arrival of a new arrangement is usually unexpected, so this should keep your ears and brain fully attentive.
The band members - Kjetil Ottersen (vocals, guitars, bass, synth, programming and sampling) and Peter Vindel (lead vocals, guitars, bass, synth, programming and sampling) admit to be inspired by works of Merzbow and other extreme noise-experimental artists, as well as hybrid metal bands such as Meshuggah.
To me, fans of djent style, or the likes of Strapping Young Lad, Devin Townsend, and Fear Factory may find Industrial-Scale Murder a must-have release. In addition, there are scarcely any new genres being coined these days but with this single, In_zekT is undoubtedly stepping into something new. Should it become mainstream? This is up to you, the listeners, to make it more known through your support.
Finally, according to the musicians, the concept of the single is based on a contemplation of events that unfolded throughout 2014 - a divide caused by conflicts between scarcely compatible societal models and civilizations.
(Katarzyna 'NINa' Górnisiewicz, Fabryka Music Magazine, January 21st, 2015. Proofreading: Mike 'Vesper' Dziewoński)
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Reviewed by Fabryka Music Magazine
08 January, 2015
The Blackmail Seduction quartet writes music in two American cities - Los Angeles and Minneapolis. Their self-titled debut album includes 7 tracks and ends with a memorable hard rock ballad, "War At Home".
Home should be, by definition, a safe place filled with positive atmosphere which allows for resting and enjoying one's space. On the surface, this track seems to speak of a frustrating situation when there's a home war between family members. However, the subjects are not specified in the song, meaning the 'war' could easily represent any personal struggle.
Musically, "War At Home" begins with a stimulating combo built from the bass (Mike Mennell), guitars (Troy Hardy, Jess McClellan) and subdued drums (Blair Sinta). These are then joined by rather high sounding vocals by Jess McClellan. Listeners will definitely pay attention to very well written arrangements which leave enough space for both vocal and instrumental parts. The chorus however, is kept in a brighter alt-rock tune thanks to vocals, yet it is still supported with heavier hard rock arrangements in the background.
At times, the aforementioned instrumental parts break away from the vocals which is always a desired method of building a mood. Previously heard verse-chorus arrangements repeat, but they are then followed by a new addition - a soloing lead guitar backed with non-distracting keyboards (both by Hardy). It is an epic solution making the likes of Led Zeppelin or Deep Purple so touching since such composition opens up space for listeners' imagination to roam free. A 'crying' guitar adds a strong and emotional accent to these arrangements. Thus, the mood takes over thanks to a very beautiful yet powerful part of the song which hard rock fans will truly admire.
The track's final part sounds very professional, with the guitar and keyboard having the last word in the composition.
When it comes to production, it's kept on not so clean or deep but rather 'analogue' levels, quite typical for 70s hard rock music due to the gear used back then. Apparently, the band also prefers this style, though to me a deeper dimension & cleaner sound could have been utilized as well to make the best of modern mixing consoles.
(Katarzyna 'NINa' Górnisiewicz, Fabryka Music Magazine, January 6th, 2015. Proofreading: Mike 'Vesper' Dziewoński)
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Reviewed by Fabryka Music Magazine