If techno were a food, imagine an animal – preferably a cow – eating it. Obviously the poor bovine would sustain heavy indigestion, as the beats would be too complex to break down, the tempo slowing as it passed through the labyrinthine digestive tract. To put it simply, this is Techno Animal: a slowed electronic rhythm with hard drums and heavy bass.
Kevin Martin and Justin Broadrick have been collaborating for almost 10 years. For The Brotherhood of the Bomb – their fourth release in total and their first with the Matador label – the UK-based duo has included some prominent MCs, saving the album from sounding overly homogenous and dark.
Headliners include underground hip hop geniuses Sonic Sum, who appear on “DC-10.” Yet fans of the Sum won’t find the peaceful, soothing music representative of their masterpiece album, “The Sanity Annex.” MC Rob Smith’s normally poetic lyrics come across sinisterly, greatly due to the music, in an interesting contrast to his previous work.
After this cut, the album forms a massive sea of rather unwelcoming, hard-hitting instrumentals. There are only a few noticeable shifts where the sound picks its head above water long enough to sound like, well … music. “Monoscopic” actually shows signs of chords and “Hell,” despite its title, is perhaps the best track, due to guest MC Dalek’s lyricism. Other notable appearances include those by Rubberoom, Anti-Pop Consortium, Toastie Taylor, El-P and Vast.
Though I don’t dislike this album – it’s actually not bad at all in an artistic sense – it’s just not something I would play on a date.
But then again, I don’t get out much.
[Mr. Bell sporadically appears on DJ Kevin Fink’s “Funky Breaks on Black Cakes”]