Oct 2012 16

The Mask of Sanity - Sickness, Thy Name Is HumanThe Mask of Sanity
Category: Industrial
Album: Sickness, Thy Name Is Human
Stars: 3.5
Blurb: An expertly rendered blend of dark soundscapes that unfold slowly to show their true dark splendour make for an engrossing listen.


The title of this Swedish act’s debut is pretty uncompromising and the music it contains is no pushover, either, as Id (for it is he) evokes an unforgiving world that is somber and dark. Id’s talent for producing darkly evocative soundscapes that take the listener on a journey through dark emotions makes for a constantly engrossing listen, starting in fine style as “The Monsters Inside Me” sees Id setting his stall out straightaway with an almost impenetrable soundscape of deep synths and hard, scything guitars being slowly propelled by an equally heavy rhythmic bombardment; the chorus does lighten the tone somewhat, although this is offset by the slower sections toward the end, which are positively mournful and set things up for the surging climax. It’s these dark tracks that scale the greatest heights, as is proven further by the excellence of “Death Engine Machine,” which combines a pounding aggrotech style rhythmic base with trademark melodies to excellent effect, not to mention “Living Black Hole,” which builds expertly into a powerfully mournful piece, and the similarly intense “With Vengeance.” The dramatic mood of “A Place Among the Forlorn” is heightened by some superb soaring melodies, and this intensity soon proves to be an integral part of the album’s appeal as the relatively lighter tracks suffer in comparison with some surprisingly weak rhythms forming the basis of “Dark Horizon” and making for an odd combination with the unusually phased backing, which in itself could have made for a more innovative piece, although the fine chorus does rescue matters to some extent (no points for the old hat 9/11 samples, though, as they were done to death years ago). “The Burden” similarly never quite hits the spot despite having most of the right ingredients; it’s not a letdown as such, but it’s just that by failing to reach the same emotive levels it’s more easily forgotten among the excellence on show elsewhere. Still, two out of 10 isn’t bad going by anyone’s standards and the deep, dark soundscapes that are this album’s trademark have a great deal to offer the discerning dark electro lover.
Track list:

  1. The Monsters Inside Me
  2. Dark Horizon
  3. Death Engine Machine
  4. Living Black Hole
  5. BeLIEve
  6. The Burden
  7. With Vengeance
  8. A Place Among the Forlorn
  9. No Stars Shine
  10. Out of Reach

The Mask of Sanity MySpace http://www.myspace.com/maskofsanityswe
The Mask of Sanity Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Mask-Of-Sanity/179030082148398
The Mask of Sanity Bandcamp http://www.themaskofsanity.bandcamp.com
Purchase at:
Amazon MP3
Carl Jenkinson (carlj)

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