The second album from The Pain Machinery is perhaps the best thing from BLC Productions since last year’s release from Beta. This disc is solidly rooted in old school rhythmic EBM: not much melody, but lots of varied beats, beeps, and minimalist keyboard arpeggios. Band founder Anders Karlsson also displays more overt industrial elements than many contemporary EBM acts. Although this album is entirely electronic, he uses numerous percussion effects that sound a lot more like machinery than actual drums. The main bass beat in “Voltage,” for example, resembles nothing so much as a jammed piece of factory equipment breaking down, while “Terror Against Terror” utilizes a reverberating effect a bit like what you’d imagine a mattress spring being pulverized by a jackhammer would sound like. Vocally it’s all pretty heavy, with thickly distorted bellowing and occasional creepy whispers being about as varied as it gets, but the instrumentation is both diverse and smartly done. “Dehumanize” is slow but punishing, with enough feedback and brutality to please fans of such rhythmic noise acts as Terrorfakt and Manufactura, while “Pre-Programmed Automatic” is tense and minimalist, utilizing subdued pulsing effects and nervous analog beats to create something more reminiscent of late ‘90s Attrition, minus the classical elements. BLC Productions has gotten a reputation for putting out lots of generic Suicide Commando clones, but with an album this intelligent, maybe there’s hope there for fans of smart EBM after all.
Visit Karlsson online at www.thepainmachinery.com for more information.
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