Flatline Skyline are back after four years. At least, that is when I checked them up, because I hadn't heard of them before I got their new release. I checked some of the reviews of their debut records Horizon Grid, which was also released on Mechanoise Labs, and was very well received. Some stating it had a clinical IDM sound with little variation and a somewhat apathetic singer and songwriting approach.
Well, this new album sounds very different then, as it encompasses a wide variety of genres to create a potpourri of different styles really. It also sound very different from what Mechanoise Labs usually releases more experimental noise, ambient and power electronics. Well, it might not be all that weird, since this release is highly experimental. What this record does is bringing noise, IDM, emo, angstpop and soundscapes to a somewhat surreal and consistent whole. One of the highlight of this album is Fox Fight, which has a rather experimental structure, but because of the vocal delivery of the lead singer it also turns partially into a kind of emo pop song. Don't be afraid, because it's a really good song! Other interesting songs are No Dial Tone which has some nice efficient melodies between experimental structures. The song is completed with some nice vocals en lyrics. The ending of the song turns into harsh noise as a kind of catharsis. Other Dreams is more IDM oriented and uses some retro sounds. Be Good To Them Always is almost a clubby song with its rhythm and nice melodies. This is a very nice song! ...And The Moon Swam Back is a more quiet and serene song with some sweet melodies, though it definitely has a dark touch to it. One Secret is more a dark industrial soundscape with some distorted and echoed vocals.
This album is a total pleasure to listen to. It's highly adventurous, which might put some people off. Each song is never one genre particularly, but a combination of styles. Think of Haus Arafna went emo and went shopping in the avant-garde corner. That does not cover it completely, but you get the idea. A very, very good album which turns into something else every few seconds or so. A must own!
The release is completed in an efficiently but nicely designed digisleeve that also contains a booklet with the lyrics.