Industroika: ‘North’ [Review]

For those of you whose musical tastes lean firmly to the left of centre, Brussels has birthed a brilliantly cinematic psych group by the name of Industroika, who have in turn given the world their new five track album, North. Track by track breakdown below:

First track Enter The Fjord is a well-crafted noisescape that points the listener firmly toward the nearest set of headphones, insisting on complete immersion beneath Industroika’s personal ocean of eccentric sound waves. A promising start.

Harvey In Tromso adopts a more rhythmically inclined direction: keyboards and guitar melt together while an odd squeak-based hook, confidently directed drums and minimalist piano hint at tough-guy gangster film soundtracks. Then it all goes fully Tarantino, breaking into aggressive sampled ranting (Harvey Keitel in Bad Lieutenant, in this case) and an unconventionally coherent riff section that quickly gets drowned under mercilessly warped synthesizers.

Walk Straight, Work Hard – the shortest track in this five-song set – cuts the listener some slack, introducing a repetitive and bouncy hook pushed behind electronic melodies reminiscent of early (pre-Autobahn) Kraftwerk. Of all the tracks thus far, Walk Straight, Work Hard best fits Industroika’s ‘PsyKraut Cinoisematic’ mission statement – by the end the whole piece just dissolves into a mush of shouts and signal-free noise.

Booker Noe is a cyberpunk masterpiece – a rough around the edges groove matched with equally ragged riffage that would work perfectly behind a late-Nineties sci-fi film. If William Gibson’s Mona Lisa Overdrive were given a soundtrack, this piece would have to be included simply out of principle. This track is my personal favourite.

Closing track The Strongest of the Strange mimics Harvey In Tromso’s combination of heavy percussion and sampled monologue, this time finishing off with some trumpets, awkwardly sexual wah guitar, another fuzz riff, and a guitar / synth solo duel that ultimately shatters the song’s structure and collapses into static. A fitting finale to an entertainingly cinematic experience.

Check out North here.

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Posted on 03 August 2013

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