Jan 2018 07

Category: Electro / EBM
Album: By Design
Blurb: Though its adherence to the conventions of electro/EBM with only the minutest deviations runs strong, the debut album from WICCID resonates with the strength of Erie Loch’s signature production and songwriting.


Erie Loch is one of the busiest artists in today’s electro/industrial music scene – from the lascivious blasphemy of Blownload to the libidinous dubstep of Exageist, the darkly rapturous Dream in Red to the guttural industrial/rock of Primitive Race, along with a long line of remix and production credits, there seems to be no limit to his creative inclinations. With WICCID, he teams up with Crash MF to deliver a melodious electro/EBM barrage primed for dance floor consumption as evidenced by the duo’s debut album By Design. Darkly catchy and infectiously rhythmic, By Design features 11 tracks of good old fashioned futurepop in a vein similar to the likes of Imperative Reaction and Assemblage 23; full of soaring vocal melodies, searing synth leads, and striking dance beats, this record is quite clear from the onset what its goals are: to get you moving! Tracks like the opening “Ash,” “Tomorrow Without Fear,” “Lights,” and “Prey Predator” all follow a similar pattern of throbbing beats and fetching hooks, the sounds derived from a similar sonic vocabulary as the acid and techno drenched leanings of the late ‘90s and early ‘00s, with Loch’s voice often staying within a low crooning range during the verses and bursting into fever pitch heights during boisterous and emotive choruses. There’s a bluesy, almost nasally quality to his voice that along with Crash MF’s backing services each track quite well, with only a few moments that truly impress. One of those moments comes in “Break” as he stretches an octave or two above the verses to reach a blistering climax that along with the splashes of piano amid a slower tempo makes for one of the album’s best realized songs. The same can be said of “Anxiety,” although this writer feels the harmonies would’ve been more effective in this track had there been a female accompaniment to take the lead in the chorus. Ultimately, where By Design falters is in its adherence to the conventions of the genre with little variety; by the time we reach “Fire In Your Veins,” the pulsating synth arpeggios and throbbing beats start to wear thin in their formulaic approach. Even in the slower numbers like “The Reconstructing Gods” and the aforementioned “Anxiety,” both of which featuring excellent programming and sound design, there is a sense of treading familiar ground… well done, but been done. The most notable deviations appear in the form of vocal modulations – in “Inhuman Nature,” Loch screams and screeches in a manner one might expect in terror EBM, and in both “The Grand Comedian” and “Torn,” he sings in such a low register that he’s practically croaking, but only briefly. Nevertheless, the latter track is perhaps the strongest track to be released as a single as it’s sure to make its way in many a DJ set. Even as he keeps his various outlets restrained to their respective styles, the strength of Loch’s songwriting and production abilities that we’ve heard in Exageist or Dream in Red is readily apparent in WICCID. With Crash MF, he’s crafted a rather enjoyable if unoriginal album of electrifying futurepop with heavy traces of EBM for good measure, ensuring that at least a few of these tracks will be heard in clubs and dance floors for a good while… and as stated, that seems to be the intent of By Design all along.
Track list:

  1. Ash
  2. Torn
  3. Inhuman Nature
  4. Tomorrow Without Fear
  5. Break
  6. Fire In Your Veins
  7. Lights
  8. The Reconstructing Gods
  9. Prey Predator
  10. Anxiety
  11. The Grand Comedian

Website, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp
Cleopatra Records
Website, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, YouTube
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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