Aug 2012 27

Arzt+Pfusch - Lictor EvaporatedArzt+Pfusch
Category: Terror EBM
Album: Lictor Evaporated
Stars: 4
Blurb: Overt references to tabletop wargaming do little to detract from this emerging Danish act’s harsh ode to the grim darkness of the far future.


 

Perhaps it’s the alleged seriousness of the genre, but for whatever reason, there doesn’t seem to be the same proclivity that one would find within, say, the metal scene, for theme bands. It’s almost a rite of passage (plus a little bit of padding for the live show) for industrial bands to pay homage via a quirky cover; but unlike our brothers in metal, one does not typically find industrial acts dedicating themselves to Harry Potter, Pirates, Nintendo theme songs, singing in Klingon, etc. Danish terror EBM duo Arzt+Pfusch has flown in the face of this trend with the release of their fourth full-length album Lictor Evaporated. Their first release under enigmatic co-op label Complete Control Productions, Lictor Evaporated is dedicated to the science fiction universe of the Warhammer 40,000 tabletop games.

While this might come as a turnoff for serious fans of the music, it shouldn’t. Arzt+Pfusch has released a scorched earth of an album that stands on its own, free of any association with the game. Arzt+Pfusch melds Wagnerian synth pads with harsh militaristic drums. Processed and raw, their beats sound familiar while hinting at the malign and alien. The vocal processing adds to this effect presenting the vocalists as distant malefactors with inscrutable designs. This discordance separates Arzt+Pfusch from other military themed acts in that while there is an obviously crypto-fascist undercurrent, it is influenced so heavily by the sci-fi melodrama of it all that the sound borders on unique. The quality of the songs is even through the majority of the album. With “Well Polished Boltgun,” things begin sagging and by the final song, “Landspeeder (Interrupted By Plasma Blast),” the whole thing seem to be collapsing under its own weight.

If all of the above sounds familiar to both fans of the game and fans of the genre, what really shows Arzt+Pfusch’s hand are the lyrics. Not afraid to call out their favorite aspects of the game, many lyrics are given over to describe in-game imagery. For the most part, the game references, while overt, are possessed of the sort of grim poetry that would be easily overlooked by anyone who is not familiar with the material. In the absence of these tells, the songs follow a pattern similar to those acts concerned with portrayal of battle in song. To those who consider themselves 40k fans however, the references are unavoidable and no doubt welcome. Lictor Evaporated is a fine album that should carry appeal not only for those who exist at the intersection of gaming and EBM, but for those who consider themselves purely fans of the music as well.
 
Track list:

  1. Fall of an Empire
  2. Flaesh Mangler
  3. Subzero Penalty
  4. Mars Pattern II
  5. Servo Skull
  6. Supreme
  7. Well Polished Boltgun
  8. Landspeeder (Interrupted By Plasma Blast)

 
Arzt+Pfusch Website http://www.arztpfusch.com
Arzt+Pfusch MySpace http://www.myspace.com/arztpfusch
Arzt+Pfusch Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/ArztPfusch/8899349428
Complete Control Productions Website http://www.ccproductions.org
Complete Control Productions Facebook https://www.facebook.com/completecontrolproductions
Complete Control Productions Twitter https://twitter.com/C_C_Prod
 
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
 
2011-10-28
 
Brendan Leonard (vonruthven)

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