Apparently emerging from a cryogenic slumber approximately every six years, Pail has once again awakened and released its third full-length album, Faith in the Void. An album oozing with pure, old-school EBM and industrial styling, Pail’s scheduled emergence from hibernation brings with it a welcome throwback to the harder edged, synth rich days of yore, but Faith in the Void’s flaws prevent it from quite holding up to the classics.
There is an old-school style in tracks like “Planet Prison,” with its thumping, stomping rhythm and heavy Funker Vogt-like vocals, and the sinister mechanized feel of “The First Words,” that conjures memories of Caustic Grip era Front Line Assembly. However, the problems with Faith in the Void are best exemplified by “Global Dreams;” the track shows an amazing mastery of soul-gripping synths that make the listener yearn for more, but despite how glorious the sound is, the vocals just fall flat and feel more like an afterthought for a song that would likely work better without them. There are tracks where the vocals are integrated into the work far more naturally like the clever work on “Silence” that incorporates acoustic guitar riffs and a whispery vocal style, but there are also the closing tracks “Dignity Corrosion” and “Decadence by Design” that are already somewhat lacking in character, but the vocals only amplify the bland feel and leave the album on a disappointing note.
Pail definitely impresses with this third outing, showcasing its mastery of complex arrangements, strong rhythms, and enchanting synth lines. Unfortunately, the occasionally generic tracks and lackluster vocals drag the album down a bit and prevent it from being a new classic. Faith in the Void is sure to be quite a treat for anyone who is a fan of older style industrial acts like Front Line Assembly or Numb. It’s just a shame that as great as it is, it still feels like it had the potential of being more.
Pail MySpace http://www.myspace.com/pailcausticrecords
Pail Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/PAIL/336672161802
Caustic Records Website http://www.causticrecords.com
Caustic Records MySpace http://www.myspace.com/causticrecords
Caustic Records Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/CAUSTIC-RECORDS/316918998270
Trubie Turner (Flexei)