Artist: Digicore (York, UK)
CD title: More Than Just An Ape
Label: Armalyte Industries
Release Date: 8-12-13
In the bands own words:
“Almost two years in the making, ‘More Than Just an Ape’ documents the next stage in Digicore’s evolution. Continuing their obsession with the influence of the digital age on the human condition, ‘…Ape’ combines cutting edge electronica with a more refined approach to song writing. Where once chaos reigned amidst the furious digital hard core of their ‘Without Freedom’ debut, now the emphasis is on bludgeoning riffs and melody.
Fronted by producer Danny Carnage, who is joined by bassist Matt Bastard and drummer Cell, Digicore’s early ‘…Ape’ sessions saw an overhaul in the band’s signature sound, as they attempted to reconciled their more sophisticated approach to intensity whilst remaining true to their punk roots. What followed saw Digicore further embrace the technology at their disposal whilst simultaneously attempting to reclaim their humanity, primarily though the decision to drastically amend Carnage’s vocal style. No longer restricted by having to hide behind a feral roar, Carnage’s cleaner vocals now allow for a truer sense of the corporeal, adding a dynamic edge to the explosive sonic assault, a sound that repurposes the beats of Dubstep, Techno, Gabba and Drum ‘n’ Bass to their own end.
Since winning the Barfly’s prestigious ‘Battle of the Bands’ competition way back in 2005, Digicore have since played hundreds of incendiary gigs around the UK and are already confirmed for the Alt-Fest festival in 2014”
And yet another genre Cyberpunk, the genres keep coming and bringing with them more interesting music for sure.
Digicore have that hard edge of punk with more than a scraping of Cyber, dub step and techno all encased within a punk theme and come up with this unusual sound that houses digital keyboard and programming as well as guitars which gives it imaginative enterprise. I am used to the more raucous vocal that cyber brings but I don’t think it would work in Digicore’s case as they would lose their punk element, although there are slightly softer moments incorporated into their hard edge sound, but safe to say the synth sounds drive an interesting hypnotic stance that’s quite exciting and wins through on its own merits.
‘In to Ruin’ is a sombre opening with thought provoking lyrics that lie on a bubbling under tone of hypnotic rhythms and quite an invigorating track with its keyboard sounds just hinting that they are there in the background and a superb opening track with a lot going on.
‘You are not like me’ has a shrill guitar sound attached to it as it boldly surges into existence amid a bubbling rhythm of synth and possesses that shock effect which is a good wake-up call for the listener if they think Digicore is just a one trip pony – think again!
‘Disconnected’ is soaked in distortion and a heavy electric guitar that makes a statement and demands attention with a smattering of dub step rhythm that compliments it superbly.
The next track possesses an effervescence of unmerciful sounds that go straight for the jugular and bite hard! I suppose that is why it is called ‘The Great Devourer’ the seductiveness from the scintillating notes leave a chill in the air as it ravishes the senses.
Sinister and edgy is the next track ‘I will not be afraid’ possessing an almost teasing rhythm of hypnotic synth and electric guitar to muted beats and a clean vocal that is sung in a softer more whispered tone and leaves its mark.
Hell on Earth houses some unusual bubble and squeak synthetic tones that are striking, daring to be bold in delivery and hungry for attention.
One of my favourite tracks from this album has so far been ‘Not one of us’ for its rebellious rhythms and catchy synchronization, although the ending suddenly is cut short for what reason I have no idea, which is a shame.
‘I don’t belong here’ is a mix of strange complicated noises that build up into an array of prowling, predatory aural toxicity that boasts a niggling urgency.
The brooding ‘Flesh is Weakness’ is a track that is not only remarkably dark it also houses a lot of temptation in its structures that start off bubbling under the surface and then simply explodes into a harsh expression of toxic sultry power and leaves the listener quite bewildered but again it finishes suddenly just as you are getting into it.
‘I hate what I have become’ literally sparks an explosion of hypnotic fast notes that then turn more sinister and demands attention. It levels out with a soft clean vocal that ripples over a muscular synthetic sound.
The final track that is also the title track ‘More than just an ape’ bristles with engaging tones and is quite intriguing whilst the vocals are captivating and absorbing.
Seeing Digicore’s name alongside Petrol Bastard who are supporting Digicore for their official release show and one of my all-time favourite bands – (but don’t tell them – as they think I think they are shit!) (Takes place 10th August at Electrowerkz, 7 Torrens St, London) http://www.fatsoma.com/events/89444/ for their album launch) But saying that it brought a smile to face I can tell you, although sadly I will not be in attendance, but I am sure it will be a superb event so don’t miss it if you are in the area.
To Sum up:
It wouldn’t win any awards as a dance album but it may do for its unique tendency to bristle with an unusual taste for dub step and hypnotic rhythm that slices through the aural with a magnified intensity. Vocally engaging going from a mere whisper at times to a harsher edge and suiting each track superbly well, it holds a captivation that is compelling in its own right and can be a little to the extreme in places that gives it an urgent feel.
Quite a mind blowing album with plenty to get your head around although on the downside it has a tendency to pull more towards a sombre listen so if you are feeling a little fragile could send you right over the edge! I still however, find the album interesting.
If you would like to hear a sample from the ablum: https://soundcloud.com/dannycarnage/digicore-disconnected
Take a listen: Album Teaser
In to Ruin
You are not like me
The Great Devourer
I will not be afraid
Hell on Earth
Not one of us
I don’t belong here
Flesh is weakness
I hate what I have become
More than just an ape
Danny Carnage - Vocals, Guitars and Programming,
Matt Bastard – Bass
Cell - Drums
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