Thursday, August 12, 2010

Her Ethic – Spoiler Warning: YOU DIE : Post industrial / rock / goth

Reviewed by Gird_09

Her Ethic is one of those rare projects where young people actually take up the legacy of the original industrial bands and their sources of inspiration. Her Ethic has content and ballast, and some of the track titles read like short stories by Burroughs or Ballard. Even more positively Her Ethic sounds nothing like the tedious industrial metal or cliched toothless endzeit which pretends to carry the industrial torch these days.

Musically this record is more akin to industrial rock, and even a touch of goth can be heard in there. I know describing things as goth isn't very fashionable these days, but it's really the only appropriate term for it – and it sounds great. I'm certainly not one to complain, it's a good blend. Stylistically I want to compare it to Psychic TV, Joy Division, Alien Sex Fiend and Cassandra Complex, with some portions reminding me of the more punky experimental tracks by Bauhaus.

The album starts with Breed in Captivity, which slowly rises out of its coffin to an electronic drum beat, predatory bass line and vocals with heavy reverb. The lyrics are classical, and evokes images of animals pleading their case or accusing some personal Dr. Moreau. The track sets the pace and style for the rest of the album, which sounds as if it's jammed and rehearsed into being, rather than written and forced. The result is dynamic and playful, though it can be a bit abrubt in places. In particular several tracks end very suddenly, and could've used a softer outro.

Aside from this it's a well balanced and well composed album, with it's blend of industrial experimentalist rock, horror soundtrack intermissions and gothy portions. At times the music is atmospheric and brooding, other times it's pounding and energetic, and it's always murky as fuck. The vocals paint a bleak picture against a background of jarring guitars, cold synthesizers and uncompromising drums. This is especially true for the penultimate track, The Infant, the Desiccant and the Novichok agent, which along with the aforementioned Breed In Captivity as well as Priapism, stands out as really strong music.

The album ends with Pseudocide. A cacaphony of noise and samples from (presumably) Barrack Obama's inauguration as president serves as a fitting end to the album, just as it was a fitting end to any naive hopes on behalf of a more humane US president.

1 Breed in Captivity
2 Decomposition
3 Senescence
4 Cacogenesis
5 Priapism
6 Mascal
7 Neonatal Death
8 The Euthanasia Machinist
9 The Infant, the Desiccant and the Novichok agent
10 Pseudocide

Norway, file download, 2009