Album: Hope Lies Torn
Label: Armalyte Industries
Genre: Dark, Harsh Electronic, Metal
Release date: October, 13, 2014
Hailing from Peterborough, UK, metal/darkdance polymath Simon Fuller brings you Hope Lies Torn. Be ready. Buckle up. This may just be what you’ve been waiting for! Bringing together savage guitars, thudding EBM beats and vicious raging vocals, Fuller moulds an absolutely flawless, limitlessly energising mix of all that is evil!
The cold and creeping intro to Not in my Name simultaneously invokes images of frozen wasteland and the nothingness of space. Gradually, one-man-band Simon Fuller injects chugging guitars into four-to-the-floor industrialist beats over a background of crackling static. This multi-layered opener eventually ends in a terrifyingly chaotic electronic breakdown.
Looking for a Fight introduces relentlessly sadistic hardcore beats over a crazed goblin hiss. This manic misanthropy builds naturally alongside the uber-paced noyze, an out-and-out amphetalysed dark dance which grows smoothly and intuitively, elements of this track are vaguely reminiscent of artists such as Frequax.
Chugging guitars come back in Anti Me to the fore to counterpoint the rapid, pulsing beat structure to immensely satisfying effect. I have not heard such naturalistic cross-genre blending in a long time, each of these diverse elements is realised and produced expertly in relation to one another, every level is spot on and complementary to the others.
The enduring combination of unilateral, merciless bass, which fluctuates incessantly from boing to thud to oontz, and rough edged thrash guitar work continues into Pigs wherein the vocals are distorted even further. At track four, I can already feel this album becoming a favourite – representing, as it does, a clean, instinctive mixing of various diverse strands of dark energy, realised with a near genius flourish and sense of chi.
In Replacer we see more examples of the various elements interplaying, in turn yielding to one another before coalescing, Godzilla-like, into a new breed of demonic behemoth – the man even finds a way to make a bongo loop fit naturally into this industrial-doom-metal-ebm beast, which simultaneously conjures the moshpit and the rave.
Spirit Hack offers a brief respite from the noise and chaos, instead choosing to mess your head up through fear. The track is brooding and malevolent, and listening to it is like being hunted by the Alien, or finding out that the giant spider you saw in the bathroom not two minutes ago has disappeared somewhere! Its actually even more unnerving when you cant see the beast! A stranger, more subtle offering yet still deeply satisfying.
Shall I come brings the brutalist soundtrack back in. Dum-dum, oontz-oontz beats and ragged, growling riffage begin smashing barstools over each other’s heads, just as a wobbly, wompy dubstep bassline strolls in and the brawl descends into madness. That is until Fuller’s throaty growl shows with a shotgun to end the fighting, get everyone to make friends, and follow him to a euphoric, etheric dancefloor!
I’m You starts off simply, dark techno echoes support a buildup which does not disappoint, going on this track for a sound much smoother round the edges. By this point, I have realised that this may be that rare thing – a truly all-killer-no-filler album! But by this point, I could honestly say that the last three tracks could all be shite and the overall album would still be superb. To this point, I genuinely cannot fault it. It is punchy, intuitive, equally accessible to those who want to bounce and dance and challenging to those who want to think and equally enraging for those who need the fury!
The metal elements, both vocally and musically, are bought to the fore a little more in the whole sound structure of Your Voice, and the contrast does initially catch you out. It is, however, a shift in emphasis which Fuller pulls off with elegance. I’m not sure how he does it. A lone performer who genre hops with such ease he manages to sound not just like one whole band, but three or four!
All Because of You expands on this inventive and experimental theme with some truly unique buzzes and squelches, before the album is rounded off with Wrecked a perfectly paced, haunting outro which mixes rage and destitution with the full musical multiplicity we have come to know, each element taking its turn to wave goodbye.
I am honestly very, very impressed with this offering. It is instantly engaging, impossibly energetic and ridiculously angry, and I cannot say enough about how intuitively enjoyable it is. As a reviewer, I have listened to it several times trying to see if I can find anything bad to say about it, but I can’t – it is truly a darkly beautiful work of art, which will take you to all corners of human auditory experience. I love it! These days everybody seems to be saying that they are hybridising the multitude of diverse alternative styles, from metal right through to cybergoth. Fuller may actually be someone who truly realises the full potential of this mission, an artist who really does live up to the hype. To all those desperate for the next big sound, you may have reached the end of your search. This is, already, in the top five of the fifty or so albums I’ve reviewed in the last 18 months, and think its going to be staying in the cd folder for quite some time to come. I have reviewed many bands which have tried to do what Fuller has so expertly realised here, to blend metal and cyber to such a satisfying result. He is the one!It fecking brilliant!
Take a listen: Hope Lies Torn (Album Teaser)
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