Monday, May 22, 2017

3Teeth : " Shutdown.exe"

You might have caught these guys when they were opening for Tool. There first album had a little more organic industrial feel to it. This go around the production is slicker in a weird way. It starts off plenty dark and heavy enough with the dramatic "Divine Weapon". There is more melody and even some heavily effected singing to "Pit of Fire". This finds them still getting the job done as it's certainly dark enough and has the kind of creepy vibe that I want from industrial when it goes this route. The changes become more evident when they take a turn into the purgatory between nu-metal and industrial, that Marilyn Manson and Rob Zombie have known to occupy. The chorus is very Zombie due to the shift of the vocals. On second listen this doesn't irk me as much as it did when I first heard this, but it almost has you waiting for the chant of "Living Dead Girl". This kind of nu-metal vibe does strike me stronger "Oblivion Coil" which reminds me of a harder version of Cruxshadows.

The title track has more of a dark wave groove to it. This one is very 90s feeling, but considering that was the high water mark for the genre I don't think that should surprise anyone. There are some shadows of Marilyn Manson cast over the vocals in places."Degrade" is a more fulfilling blend of brooding and groove. The militant chant of the vocals is what I want from this harder brand of industrial. It does strike me that they are playing it much safer in terms of what the cyber goths these days are wanting. This is what sets it apart from classic industrial acts that made the music they wanted to make and the audience conformed to it rather than letting them become power bottoms in this regard. The Marilyn Manson comparison's can resume on "Tower of Disease" which made me want to go listen to "Portrait of an American Family" again. The robotic groove makes up for this . It's the screamed vocals that really bring Manson to mind.

One of this album's strengths is the use of samples. They are well placed and the subject matter is well thought out. "Voices" is one of the albums stronger songs. There is a great balance of dismal mood and melody working together. When it does get heavy the dynamic is well earned rather than being an easy way out. The guitars are way in your face and massive on "Slavegod" and while they are powerful and sound great it makes me wonder where have the guitars been for the rest of this album. The vocals are handled in a more KMFDM manner. They come back with the very well balanced blend of sounds that makes up "Insubstantia". It's all tied together with some pretty decent songwriting that proves these guys can get the job done as needed. The cohesion this song has is what "B.O.A" lacks and keeps it from working as well.  The slower and darker has the right amount of heft in it's pound to make it's kind of creepy work well as a closing for this album.

There is a sad lack of this brand of industrial these days and this band does a pretty decent job of helping fill that hole. I am going round this album up to a 9 and see how this sits with me over time. If you miss 90s industrial rock then these guys should without question be on your radar especially if the last Marilyn Manson album did not have enough balls for you.

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