Oct 2017 14

Angelspit - Black Dog BiteAngelspit
Category: Electro / Punk / Industrial
Album: Black Dog Bite
Blurb: Vanity may be a God with teeth, but with this latest “Tough as F*ck” album blending acerbic melody with funky grooves and ‘90s cyberpunk acidity, Angelspit is out to prove that its teeth are indeed sharper.


Angelspit is a band that quite simply sounds like no other, having long established itself as a singularly aggressive electro/punk entity. While every album has held its own particular sonic and lyrical focus, the fundamentals of the band’s sound have remained the same – punchy beats, scathing textures of glitchy electronics and metallic atmospheres, and in-your-face vocals that shout manifestos against a world steadily being decimated by materialism and corporatism. For this seventh full-length album, Black Dog Bite turns away from the dancehall influences of 2016’s Cult of Fake to aim for a more brutally industrial sensibility that reaches for the early cyberpunk sound of the ‘90s – a sound that had never been completely purged in the Angelspit sonic arsenal, but is now armed to the teeth on Black Dog Bite.

As stated, there are elements endemic to Angelspit that have ensured the band retains a distinct identity, and from the first pumping beats and fluid bass lines of “Satanic Aesthetic,” they can be heard in full force on Black Dog Bite. With lines like “popular opinion is just cosmetic” and “tomorrow is burning, fueled by my rotten past,” the song just oozes with acidic attitude toward a world determined to destroy itself. With Zoog Von Rock’s determinedly melodic delivery accompanied by a shrill synth lead, the chorus is instantly catchy and begins the album off with the kind of bang that fans have come to know and love from Angelspit. Throughout the album, there is a discernible emphasis on a greater harmony between the vocals and the instrumentation, opting for a less spoken/shouted approach that dominated the group’s earlier efforts, aided by no small amount of vocoder and other electronic effects. For instance, “Sexy Tragic Muse” rolls with a consistent rhythm of bass grooves and glassy synth leads, the chorus elevating to the major third for a strangely hypnotic effect that is almost impossible not to sing along with, while the verses of “Hidden Knife” might be the closest Von Rock has ever come himself to crooning, exploding quite deliciously into electrified vocoder and choir effects in the chorus. The same can be said of “Scorpio Machine,” the album’s closing track, as Von Rock delivers a haunting and soulful vocal performance over an insistent rhythm whose sparse atmosphere is punctuated by gritty effects that gradually rise in intensity to bring Black Dog Bite to a grim close. On the other hand, “V is for Voltage” takes a more mechanical approach, powerful android vocals atop swells of orchestral samples and skittering synth effects, and while the atonal verses and punchy chorus of “Great Bank in the Sky” have a more decidedly old school Angelspit feel, punctuated by a pounding beat and a slithery vocal refrain that for all its simplicity is quite the effective hook. Throughout Black Dog Bite, the juxtaposition of funky bass lines with classic electronic beats creates a strangely retro ambience that is offset by the distorted tones that hint at the ‘90s industrial sound; topped off by lyrics that are relevant now as they would’ve been 20 years ago, and Black Dog Bite has an oddly timeless feel that could only be described as Angelspit. On the same note, the lyrics are all that one should expect from the band; “Ugly Deeds” pounds through the speakers like a battering ram with lines like “vanity is God and it’s got teeth,” touching on societal obsession with shallowness, while “Dead Man Talking” takes a surefire shot at the empty legacies of the morally corrupt, and is perhaps even more directly aimed at the current U.S. president.

Like the previous record, Black Dog Bite was funded via a successful Kickstarter campaign, which indicates the strength and loyalty of Angelspit’s audience – the album delivers on its promise to be “Tough as F*ck,” remaining true to the band’s aesthetic of electrified industrial sounds and punk/rock individualism, while continuing to incorporate new approaches to avoid stagnation. The changes and additions to the tonal palette are subtly infused, so this album may sound like just another entry in the Angelspit discography to some. However, those with an ear for what Zoog Von Rock and his ever shifting complement of collaborators have crafted, who enjoy painstakingly intricate programming and production, will certainly love what Black Dog Bite has to offer – music for a society in upheaval and in need of an antidote to the invasion of forces that threaten our sanity daily.
Track list:

  1. Satanic Aesthetic
  2. Ugly Deeds
  3. Sexy Tragic Muse
  4. Great Bank in the Sky
  5. Bang Bang Bang
  6. Hidden Knife
  7. Dead Man Talking
  8. Post Truth Wonderland
  9. Collapsing Venus
  10. V is for Voltage
  11. I, Weapon
  12. Scorpio Machine

Angelspit/Black Pill Red Pill
Website, Webstore, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, YouTube
Purchase at:
Kickstarter Campaign
Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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