Music Reviews

Collapse: In despair

 Posted by Borys Catelani   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (5990)
Sep 24 2010
Artist: Collapse (@)
Title: In despair
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
Amadou Sall can be considered a veteran already. In the early nineties he used to play in Treponem Pal, a band that through out a few albums pionereed the crossover of metal and electronics. Way more metal than Nine Inch Nails, more rock oriented than Young Gods, less claustrophobic that Godflesh, yet an original force, the first experiment of this kind coming from France, one of the first in Europe. Collapse formed in 1997, and evolved till this 6th release into something that can be easily filed under EBM in every record store. Their biography cites VNV Nation, and you can really feel a stronger concern on melody comparing with older releases, but still trying to indulge on some form of aggression. The mission is not perfectly executed indeed, the (up)beats are mostly very danceable, the arpeggiator works damn good, but feels like something is missing, and this is about power. Vocals are a bit too rough to be melodic, but yet not too angry. The many guitar samples fill in perfectly but a bit too much in the background, and the whole sound sometimes is a bit spoiled. It's about artistic choices that no one can criticize, but feels like the band is approaching the shores of catchiness and dancefloors with a strong heritage of aggressive approaches in both music and lyrics without knowing how to perfectly deal with it. I would call it a transition record and I'm definitely looking forward the following one because I believe that Collapse can really give its own definition of industrial rock.
Title: across time and space
Format: CD
Label: Record Label Records (@)
Funny I happen to review this release right after having bought a repress of Hawkwind's classic "Doremi Solfa Tido", not that they have that much in common music wise, but there's no doubt they both deal with space, earth and other astral amenities. This release on Record Label Records is a kick ass object itself: it consist of a small box-jewel box that contains the cd and the booklet and the graphic of the whole release reminds me of ancient drawing explorators were drawing when coming back after one of their many journeys. In opposition to what my incipit may suggest, this is a particular electronic release that made me think to some Warp records heroes during the "artificial intelligence" days, but "across time and space" is heavily influenced by some religious, crepuscular ambient music and by some modern electronic artists. I'm putting the emphasis on this "modern" influence since Nommo Ego is far from those wishy washy revivalists trying to pass you some old ideas as new, if you take care to the particulars, and you listen to the rhythmic sounds he uses I dare you to tell me this guy present to his time. I think a title like "across time and space" may give you a good idea this music is probably meant to travel and during several listenings that's what I've done sat back on my sofa and wandered across time and space. At the same time don't take it as an hint to think this' one of those monumental releases dealing with eternity and with ancestral dreams and so on, despite its nightly shade this work has much more to share with melancholy than with a "lost in a forest" kind of experience. This is definitely what I call an inspired release, give it a try.
Sep 22 2010