Dec 2013 09

Hypnoskull - Hypnoskull - Electronic Music Means War to Us 2Hypnoskull
Category: Rhythmic Noise
Album: Electronic Music Means War to Us 2
Stars: 4
Blurb: Raw, imposing, and boisterous, Hypnoskull has its sights on making ears bleed and destroying dance floors.


 

Spanning back from the early ‘90s, Patrick Stevens’ concoction is hard for anyone remotely enthused by the harsher, more chaotic side of electronic music to ignore. While his sound is concise, the caustic, hectic, and in-your-face type of formula Stevens adheres to is rarely rivaled. Hypnoskull’s exploits are almost like describing a voodoo ritual during an underground resistance rally the night before World War III – it’s unapologetically deafening, demands confrontation, and only the strong survive.

Undeniably lacking any progression to mitigate the onslaught, “Standard+Poor” comes out of the gate with sense pummeling, gritty beats and elephant-like growls with very little interval in between, which has come to be expected from great, relentless rhythmic noise acts. Tracks like “The Side Effect” will oddly leave one in a state of pleasant catatonia while the persistent bombardments in “Show Me the Rhythm” and creaky cello-like abrasion overlaid with frantic modem dialups and gunfire in “Verification of Your Ears” makes adrenaline course even through android veins. Stevens, allied with an assemblage of fierce and rambunctious loops, reassures listeners of the fact that Hypnoskull is staying true to its roots, which is greatly displayed in the ever so entrancing fluctuations and quintessential industrial clashes in “Transactions” and ominous war sirens that strive in accordance to ubiquitous turmoil in “Occupation Overload.” Electronic Music Means War to Us 2 could not be more aptly named as the album violently progresses to the digital conflict in “Elektrattack v2012” and the steady complementary hisses of dissension in “Your Failure Our Opportunity (1977).” From the formulaic grinding in “The Payback” to the mildly corrosive “Intravenous Preparation” and atonal turbulence in “Mediadeath (Face Your),” it’s difficult to not find oneself in a state of hypnosis, free from the restraints of fear and oppression.

Incorporating genres from breakcore to power electronics and bordering on experimental, the latter part of the release features collaborations with acts like Needle Sharing, Cyboresis, and Dissecting Table. The assortment of guests is something to be esteemed as Stevens and Michiel De Malsche impressively embody polarity in “Tikhaya” with the meditative nature of xylophone rings and other wood instruments creating a misleadingly tranquil soundscape that suddenly erupts into frenzy. The guttural rapping and breakcore of Dutch acts Kubus & Rico in “Dwars Door Je Speakers” to the post-war space disco of Needle Sharing’s influence in “Haloperidol (Laut)” to Dissecting Table’s hand in the creation of the shrill monstrosity known as “Intravenous Execution,” Stevens greatly displays the level of range and implicative fun that was had.

The bulk of Electronic Music Means War to Us 2 is by no means a drastic divergence from the anarchic, dystopian, and anti-media aesthetic this act is known for, but it is so well executed and relevant that reasons for condemning it aren’t even mere blips on the radar. While Hypnoskull’s sound doesn’t contain quite the degree of complexity laced in Iszoloscope’s lush atmospheres or the anticipation that comes from the impending barrages of Converter, the level of technical prowess employed here is absolutely evident. Intended to be a follow-up to 2001’s first venture into the series, Hypnoskull does more than live up to the album’s title.
 
Track list:

  1. Standard+Poor
  2. The Side Effect
  3. Show Me the Rhythm
  4. Verification of Your Fears
  5. Transactions
  6. Occupation Overload
  7. Elektrattack v2012
  8. Your Failure Our Opportunity (1977)
  9. The Payback
  10. Intravenous Preparation
  11. Mediadeath (Face Your)
  12. The Curse On You
  13. Hypnoskull + Michiel De Malsche – Tikhaya
  14. Hypnoskull + Kubus + Rico – Dwars Door Je Speakers
  15. Hypnoskull + Needle Sharing – Haloperidol (Laut)
  16. Hypnoskull + Cyboresis – Krengg
  17. Hypnoskull + Dissecting Table – Intravenous Execution
  18. Hypnoskull + _Steiner – Fear Eats the Soul

 
Hypnoskull MySpace https://myspace.com/therealhypnoskull
Hypnoskull Facebook https://www.facebook.com/therealhypnoskull
Hypnoskull SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/hypnoskull
Ant-Zen Website http://www.ant-zen.com
Ant-Zen MySpace https://myspace.com/antzen
Ant-Zen Facebook https://www.facebook.com/antzen.official
Ant-Zen Bandcamp http://ant-zen.bandcamp.com
 
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
Bandcamp
 
2013-04-16
 
Zachary Locke (ZLocke)

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