Roadkill Sodomizer – Killing Machine

I don’t think most metal bands know what ‘industrial’ means. Industrial isn’t a drum machine, or heavy 4/4 beats, or a vaguely totalitarian sound. Industrial is a feeling, an atmosphere, and emotion that infects us all but is difficult to grasp. However, it seems that most metal bands see the former qualifications as what makes something ‘industrial’ in nature, resulting in a bunch of bands that are no more industrial than any other black or death metal band, but using a drum machine. It’s a very rare occasion that I see a metal band with a real grasp of what industrial is.

Roadkill Sodomizer is one of those bands. This isn’t ‘industrial black metal’. This is pure black industrial. This is a band that understands that industrial is about hate a hopelessness and grasping at straws in a decaying world. A song like ‘Empty Voices’ IS industrial, what it is as a genre and as a statement: an affirmation of every man’s theory that, yes, there is something wrong with the world, and no, you really CAN’T change it. There’s very little metal in this band. Instead, this is raw black metal stripped of its roots in Venom plus industrial stripped of its roots to anything at all. A high degree of similarity rests between this and the early work of Germany’s Black Tribe; stripped down, disintegrated, noisy psalms of rickety, twisted construction.

Little is ‘traditional’ about this music. Primary voices: raw black shrieks, drum machine, MIDI keyboards. Other elements are infrequently used: a bit of guitar or background ambience, but these three elements make up the bulk of the music here. ‘Killing Machine’ is dangerously amelodic and somehow still lacks even the slightest semblance of logical rhythm. I suppose this sort of thing isn’t surprising with a member of Enbilulugugal heading half of it, but this is a genuinely terrorizing music, seemingly amateurish at first glance, but actually very carefully constructed. The cheap microphone and archaic keyboard samples weren’t selected for no reason: they mesh in some manic, disturbed fashion with the fast, perpetually changing machinegun blast under the generic, unhinged ‘melody’ that forms the top end.

This is not enjoyable music. There’s clearly something wrong when the most pleasant thing on a CDr is the hidden, untitled eight minute noise track after the ‘real’ stuff. But there it is: all the whirring and buzzing and clicking of that track is somehow easier to cope with than something like ‘Sybian Torture”s up-and-down stream of consciousness; at least here there’s something to grab on to, even if it’s just the minimalist shift of textures. You’re going to hate this demo. There’s nothing good about it. This is probably the reason why I love it.

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~ by noktorn on March 22, 2007.

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