Friday, June 5, 2020
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DEADWOOD: 8 19

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Artist: DEADWOOD
Title: 8 19
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring
Rated: *****
Almost out of the blue comes this shockingly good Swedish one-man project - so good that an authoritative label like Cold Spring is here re-releasing his DIY promo cdr. Deadwood perfectly alternates, or mixes, the sheer, relentless aggression of power electronics and the morbid catatony of death industrial. He obviously doesn't invent anything new within those established genres, but his use of the tools of the trade and, especially, his care for arrangements and details are remarkable. Beginning with the subhuman yells of "Antabus", which in the vocal department clearly betrays Deadwood's involvement in black metal as well, the disc soon swamps in the muddy ambiences of "Crushing on", more subdued but not less menacing. The vehemence of the title track, where he screams his lungs off against a heavy rhythmic hammering, gives way to "Bitch on the...", which could be the companion to "Crushing on" - monotonous synth sweeps, controlled distortion and disturbing whispered/pitch shifted rants. But the most surprising track is probably "Wither Sith", with strange looped cracklings, funeral bells and more synth waves hosting the usual brutal vocal work. As I mentioned above, Deadwood is especially great at layering and structuring, so that even a minimal set of sounds never becomes stale (take synth sounds, for example - I'm definitely NOT a fan of synths, but I really have no complaints here). This care doesn't make the result less aggressive, but rather potentiates that. Truly brilliant stuff, which will surely please even jaded industrial listeners.

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