There was a time, long ago, when I was really into industrial music. Well, maybe “really” is too strong a term to use, but I dug it quite a bit. Stuff like Circle of Dust, Brainchild, globalWAVEsystem, and Under Midnight. Then I saw some ads for this album, by a band I’d never heard of or read about. It piqued my curiosity, especially because it was on REX Records, who at the time was releasing some pretty intense stuff. I ended up not getting it until some time later, and it’s probably a good thing. Although released as an “industrial” album, this doesn’t fit easily into any of the earmarks of the genre.
If anything, this a pop album gone horribly wrong. The melodies and vocal harmonies are there, and are incredibly infectious, but they’re buried under layers of feedback and distortion. I get the feeling the lyrics are full of twisted, biting humor — if only I could understand them. The primary duo behind the band are former members of Steve Taylor’s band Chagall Guevarra, and there’s rumors that Taylor had a role, which would explain that wierd vibe this album has.
The best example of this is the album’s ten-minute finale, “The Dr. Is In (Or How I Learned To Worry And Star Missing The Cold War)” which, if you couldn’t tell, samples heavily from Dr. Strangelove. Veering from Prince-inspired grooves and funky guitar flourishes to bone-crushing rhythms and tortured vocals, it’s easily the album’s best song. Of all the “industrial” albums I’ve bought, this one’s held the most interest for me, simply because it’s so different. How often can you say that?