Category: Electronic / Industrial / Noise
Album: Industrial is Dead EP
Blurb: Swamping cacophony and complex rhythmic ferocity combat a mélange of old and new textures in this tyro’s galvanizing deviation.
With an audacious title such as Industrial is Dead, Sean Forsythe exults a premature acumen for rewiring and expanding a beloved genre. Contrary to what one would infer, industrial is not exactly dead here – it’s just disfigured, and pleasingly so. Under the psychologically appeasing handle :10:, this Michigan-based artist meticulously re-contextualizes elements from industrial, noise, and classical into beat-driven soundscapes that are as intriguing as the title alludes.
Severe machine-on-machine clamor, mangled drum layers, guitar snarls, and antiquated classical sways are what course through :10:’s uncompromising, violent heart. The creaky violin-like quivers and rough mechanical grinding in “Refute” form an unlikely enticing dichotomy of old versus new world elements with a gritty cadence that firmly sets the pace. Keldrick Brown’s destructive guitar layers and Chiasm’s self-empowering words amid a feverish downpour of distortion aid “Industrial is Dead” in becoming the EP’s strongest and most divergent track; it’s a downright poetic and uplifting assault that refuses to vanish from memory. Despite the hefty clouds of raw discord and complex percussion, nearly every track has its own thoughtfully conceived flow and mood – lust, depression, apprehension, disappointment – eschewing to wallow in a monotonous sea of anger and horror that many noise-heavy efforts fall victim to. While “Deep Wounds” does follow the standard, danceable rhythmic noise blueprint, the ominous viola-esque synths in “Voices” and fusing of steady classical textures and spastic breakbeat rhythm in the eclectic elegy in “I Failed” implies that :10: will not hit a creative deadlock anytime soon.
CRL Studios claims to be a haven for like-minded musical heretics, “…spreading the infection of harmonic beauty and noisy disfigurement.” Living up to his label’s decree, Sean Forsythe’s brutal pursuit of uncovering the shreds of beauty with juxtaposing elements is definitely a step in the right direction. With ESA, Ad•ver•sary, and a host of other inventive acts straying from the formulaic industrial-related circumscriptions, Industrial is Dead is not exactly sui generis, but it’s dynamic and refreshing enough to appeal to the same crowd and possibly beyond.
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Zachary Locke (ZLocke)