Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock
From the opening synths and distortions of the opening track, Individual Totem s new album Mothfly announces itself as crucial, difficult, cerebral, and... industrial. What do you do with a new single whose dance beat come... more »
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From the opening synths and distortions of the opening track, Individual Totem s new album Mothfly announces itself as crucial, difficult, cerebral, and... industrial. What do you do with a new single whose dance beat comes in at the 2-minute mark? If you re a label, you run away. If you really like industrial music, on the other hand, you recognize Mothfly for what it is: an industrial album which contorts and convinces, pulls you apart but creates an organic whole. The synths are simply great, the atmosphere is dark and elusive, the band asks more questions than they answer. Mothfly is often downtempo but equally it rages. It rages in dark places, alone, with vocals unable to scream, though screaming. It s a wonderful statement of psycho-analytic repression. The father lost in the son, or murdered, who can tell? From the opening and infectious WWW to the interesting and introspective In Memorial, to the Skinny Puppy-influenced The Ugly Game, Mothfly is quintessential industrial music.
Well Well, Welcome back I.T.!!!
Bert Rinderle | L.A., CA United States | 12/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'd been wondering what happened to Individual Totem. After two fine late-90s releases on Pendragon, S.E.T.I. and Mind Sculptures Flesh, IT disappeared. Around 2000, they released a new track, "W.W.W.", on Inception Records' Counterbalance v.2 compilation, supposedly in promotion for their new single and album. I think I even vaguely remember seeing a track listing on the web for the "W.W.W." single.
And then - POOF! - nothing. Weeks, months, years went by, without a peep.
Until now! The fine folks at ArtOfFact Records/Storming the Base have defied the odds, making this heretofore phantom release a reality! I can only wonder what happened to Bernd Madl and Matthias Knopp in the interim, but perhaps we'll never know. I can only assume they're well, and with their new release, Mothfly, it's strongly apparent the duo has lost none of their previous, groundbreaking potency.
First of all, definitely track down the "W.W.W." single. I get the feeling it was either finished or almost finished when the Counterbalance comp was released, as it's got a remix from the sadly defunct Gridlock (nice for Gridlock fans!!). It's a piece of electro history, and sounds like it came through a time warp from five+ years ago (hey, maybe it did!). The three non-album tracks sound much like demo versions, but the single's remixes give it worth, as IT remixes will often completely change the entire structure of a song - these are REAL remixes, not just re-recorded versions with an added synth track!
However, "W.W.W." is just a jewel in the crown that is Mothfly. It's hard to tell whether it was composed recently, or was done over the past few years, but that's a minor detail - what matters is that it's fantastic. In the 90s, IT were praised for their influential music and creative songwriting, and Mothfly continues this lofty pedigree. "Redeemer" combines tight programming and distinct melodies with catchy vocals, and "In Memorial" may be the most, ahem, memorable vocal track IT has done. And "W.W.W." sounds as fresh and mighty as it did seven-odd years ago.
The strength of the album is certainly its production, and it's allowed to shine during the excellent instrumental tracks. Individual Totem has always had a flair for creating unusual atmospheres with its music - S.E.T.I.'s haunting "Human/Machine Interaction" and Flesh's monster "3 Sec Reality" - and these talents are on fine display on Mothfly with cuts such as "Surrender", "Panic", "Breakdown", and my favorite, the exhilirating, captivating "Totalausfall." The vocal tracks carry their own focused weight, but in my humble opinion, IT's instrumentals are more striking and accomplished.
Mothfly is easily the most pleasant industrial surprise of the year, and one of the most unexpected albums to come out in some time. It's a credit to both Individual Totem and ArtOfFact for releasing this fine work after so much time. I'd actually written off IT as having faded into industrial history, and I'm supremely glad to be wrong. They're back, firing on all cylinders, as if Mind Sculptures Flesh was only months old, instead of years.
One more note for IT fans: see if you can track down Pendragon's Quadrophobia compilation, as it's got some exclusive tracks, as well as IT remixing Gridlock (and vice versa!).
Welcome back, guys...maybe don't take so long till the next one, eh?"