Release DetailsLABEL Cold Meat Industry
RELEASED ON 10/16/2005
Brighter Death Now
posted on 11/2005 By:
Hey kids. Do you think guitars are passé? That drums are for pussies? Do you bang your head uncontrollably at the sound of your furnace rumbling? Well then I’ve got the album for you. Industrial noise-smith Roger Karmanik and his Brighter Death Now have returned with Kamikaze Kabaret, their latest platter of pulsing dark atmosphere. The album is an hour of repetitive, undulating soundscapes that have little use for melody. I can appreciate an album like this from time to time, and indeed, have given some favorable reviews to albums in the genre. What I struggle with, is trying to gain even the most tenuous understanding of the core audience for an album such as this. You know, the people that love this shit, and want as much of it as they can find. I’ll bet if I found some of those people, here are some things I would NOT overhear:
“Dude, you should hear them play it live”
“I love the chorus!”
“I don’t know, it just seems kinda cliché”
“They totally sold out with this album. Hear that bleeping right there? Total push for mainstream acceptance.”
You’ll have to excuse my good natured dickishness, but my points are as follows. First, there’s a relatively low glass ceiling for how keyed up most of us will get for an album like this, that eschews conventional vocals and instruments. I believe that most collections need a handful of albums like Kamikaze Kabaret; whether they’re used during studying, sleeping, vegging out with headphones, or as an auditory lubricant for the effects of your illegal substance of choice. I also think that these albums just kind of click with people or don’t, and that explaining why an album clicks is tougher than it is with other genres. Secondly, there’s only so much a reviewer can say about an album comprised of noise. It is what it is. So I’ll tell you a little more, then let you visit Cold Meat Industry for samples, if you’re so inclined.
Brighter Death Now’s sound is based on pulsating, rhythmic monotony made up of multiple layers of sound and samples. The objective here is to craft songs that present some challenging jaggedness without becoming overly grating and compromising the hypnotic power of the songs. Without being lulled into the flow of the material, an album like this will drive you batshit inside of ten minutes. Brighter Death Now get that balance right quite a bit of the time, but not often enough to push Kamikaze Kabaret above average. Some of the looped vocals become grating, and a few of the songs don’t have as much going on, and can therefore run a little long. The songs that emphasize rhythm and overlap sound patterns in a more chaotic way (such as “Take Me Away”, despite some of the distracting vocal samples) provide the heaviest and most enjoyable moments on the album. Despite some less convincing passages, I found very little of the album to be objectionable. I spun it several times, and if at some point someone pulls it off my shelf and plops it in the cd player, I would voice little if any objection. At the same time, I’m not sure I would reach for this again on my own. If this is your thing, then you should definitely check out some samples, although one would guess that fans of the genre would probably already be excited to check out the newest effort of a veteran project like Brighter Death Now.
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