Jan 2014 05

Funker Vogt - Companion in CrimeFunker Vogt
Genre: EBM
Album: Companion in Crime
Stars: 3
Blurb: The soundtrack of the future arrives by military helicopter.


 

Funker Vogt would have you believe we live in a dystopian future full of war profiteers, political intrigue, and a Big Brother-like government bent on social engineering of the lowest common denominator. And somehow, after you listen to the band’s albums, you walk away with hairs on the back of your neck raised, certain that this assessment is correct. The synthesizers are percussive, analog, and rich in timbre, sounding like slightly distorted complex waveforms with bright overtones. They never fatigue the ear from being overly pleasant or too harsh, but neither do they drive the song by hooks or polyrhythms. The ornamentations are an array of various lasers fired from spaceships deep within the Crab Nebula waging intergalactic war with a far off alien race. Songs like “Gott Noch Nicht” show the band still knows those chord progressions that frighten and titillate listeners.

The first star of this album is “Six Feet Under,” a track that reminds you that thus far, this album has lacked those harmonic hooks the defined previous outings like Blutzoll and Aviator. The melodies are flat, ominous keys with a military influence, the notes moving up and down the key in distant tones, never quite resolving fully. Coupled with the un-syncopated beat, it gives the feel of a futuristic military march. The drumbeats are all the same 4/4 standard, but they’re mixed so perfectly into the track as to neither standout too much to detract from the song, nor are they pushed so far away into the mix that the song loses its groove. It’s the perfect cyber dance music, chugging along infinitely and without hesitation; simple but danceable. Funker Vogt has always been outspoken on sociopolitical issues and as always, the lyrics are enough to make Aldous Huxley proud. They paint a picture of a dystopian society that could be mankind’s doomed future as much as today’s drone wars in the remotest mountains of the east. While they tread no new territory lyrically, neither do they stray from what we’ve come to love.

Where some see a tired and formulaic lack of creativity, others see an archetype. The rhythms, melodies, and synthesized sound effects have become the stuff EBM is made of. The influence of these dark tones and simple chord progressions that drop ominously into a lower registers will likely be heard for years to come in the industrial dance scene. Following last year’s departure of keyboardist Björn Böttcher and lyricist Kai Schmidt, the sudden, unfortunate departure of front man Jens Kästel last month leaves fans to ponder the age old question, “Can a man resign from a band he’s the only member of,” leaving the entire future of Funker Vogt in question. As the founding member, Kästel was a seminal force in the shaping of Funker Vogt’s sound. But there’s hope for fans as his language regarding the future of the band and his musical career were vague at best meaning this may not be the end for Kästel. Whatever the future holds for both parties we can count on it requiring shirtless men in cyber-goggles.
 
Track list:

  1. Columbine
  2. Mein Weg
  3. Religion
  4. Six Feet Under
  5. Kampf den Maschinen
  6. Gott Noch Nicht
  7. Kill On Command
  8. Our Life
  9. Kapitulation
  10. Warrior of the World
  11. The Firm
  12. Revolution
  13. Bruder7

 
Funker Vogt Website (Deutsch) http://www.funkervogt.de
Funker Vogt Website (English) http://www.funker-vogt.com
Funker Vogt MySpace http://www.myspace.com/funkervogt
Funker Vogt Facebook https://www.facebook.com/funkervogt.de
Metropolis Records Website http://www.metropolis-records.com
Metropolis Records MySpace https://myspace.com/metropolisrecords
Metropolis Records Facebook https://www.facebook.com/MetropolisRecords
Metropolis Records Twitter https://twitter.com/MetropolisRec
Out of Line Website http://www.outofline.de
Out of Line MySpace http://www.myspace.com/outoflinelabel
Out of Line Facebook http://www.facebook.com/outoflinelabel
Out of Line Twitter http://twitter.com/outofline
 
Purchase at:
Amazon CD (Metropolis Records)
Amazon CD (Out of Line Records)
Amazon MP3
 
2013-07-09
 
John Spranza (JSpranza)

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