As much as it may be cathartic to (very occasionally) tear a sub-quality release a new orifice I actually gain very little satisfaction at getting stuck reviewing shit I hate - I'd much rather be salivating over the latest caustic cleansing than whining about watered down meal substitutes and the more crap I shovel, the less I feel like shovelling at all. So I was plenty glad to see this latest Mechanoise Labs effort peeking out of my postal box since it very likely meant that the drain of mediocrity was at least one full length release away from my CD player. And thankfully my hunch proved right.
This Kryptogen Rundfunk release contains 8 tracks spread over 41 minutes and comes packaged in a snazzy oversized vinyl sleeve with a cardstock inner foldout. Firmly planted in industrial realms it is nice to see less analog drum machine this time around and far more grinding off of the paint to expose the grey concrete and rusted rebar hidden beneath the surface. The tracks range through both harsher and dronier ambient material to noise focused industrial pieces with most melodic content limited to only a few outbursts or at least to being minimalist in nature. Sparse is also a common adjective in play here, the plumes of dust stirred up by each burst of activity generally allowed to settle before the next one hits. Likewise, most songs come and go like seasons . . . slow attacks down gentle slopes, motifs shifting in slow motion, LFOs frequencies well under 1Hz.
Haus Arafna would be the most immediate comparison overall (minus the vocal component) though melodic moments on tracks like "Ohne Augen" for example dip as far back as "Voice Of America" era Cabaret Voltaire when reaching out into the available pool of influences. The more ambient moments also point to Kenotaph, the colours washed out a tad more but the overall tone somewhat similar if not quite as dense.
I don't have a lot of complaints here since the mastering is great and there is an overall notable lack of sucking. About the worst I could throw at it is that at times it seems almost too sparse with the ambience a little hard to find in quite this much darkness (you don't want to drop your glasses during "3cm cubed" for example). I am also not quite 100% sold on the pilfered schmaltz piano anthem waltzing around the final track "Goworit Moskwa!", mainly because it refuses to buzz off when the drills and electrodes come out and although the ghost reference works, it would have been cool to hear the poltergeist get a bit more violent.
Taken as a whole however Mechanoise Labs have produced another disc worthy of the repeat mode of your discman. A definite improvement over Kryptogen Rundfunk's previous performance and some much needed refreshment for this particular industrial shit worker.