ALBUM: We Are Still Alive
LABEL: Crunch Pod
REVIEWER: Jim Zombie
There is so much to write about with C/A/T’s latest release. I could spend hours talking about the social and political aspect of the album. Equally I could spend as much time again on the musical aspects of this well polished EP. We Are Still Alive is one of a few albums released this year that has appealed me on both a stylistic and intellectual level. Bring the politics and thought back into music, art is meant to be activism.
We Are Still Alive is not only an album of awesome ear candy but also thought provoking and political. The album is introduced not with fat dance beats, which seem to dominate so much current industrial but with scratchy brooding synths and a sample warning us of the dangers of shadowy organisations that act as puppet masters of the US government.
With the tone established the following tracks explore themes of exploitation, control, confusion and apathy. We are offered the idea that we are not going to experience a sudden apocalypse triggered by specific events but rather, we are living in the apocalypse (now). We are living in an age of decline, alienation and moral ambiguity. Nothing is clear, “good” and “evil” have fused into a perverted intertwined symbiotic cancer that has spread throughout society. What comes next is annihilation… or not; We Are Still Alive leaves us with an alternative to extinction. Through a sampled conversation, possibly from “The Day the Earth Stood Still”, “The Brink of Self-Destruction” offers us the possibility of social evolution that will pull us back from the brink. One way it is apocalypse, either for the old order or for the species as a whole.
While the meat of the album is socially oriented, tracks like “Dead to Me” offer a diversion from an album that may otherwise be too much of a noodle fryer for some. This track is more of the dancier C/A/T style but still gels well with the rest of the slower (but just as hard), more serious tone and themes. As I said earlier, this album is well polished. Melodious and, to use that cliched term, brooding and to use that other cliched term, dark. From “51X Revival” to “Dead to Me” all the fat has been trimmed and we are given a tight, balanced, acidic progression that shows why C/A/T is one of the best current industrial projects.
Do not miss this release; undoubtedly the grand herald of even greater things to come with 2010s Chaos And Terror.
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