D.A.R.P.A. / Dive / :wumpscut: ‎– New Forms Of Entertainment Vol. I - Cybernoise

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June 4, 2012
referencing New Forms Of Entertainment Vol. 1 - Cybernoise, CD, Comp, Promo, VUZ 01
D.A.R.P.A. bring us the first 5 tracks - "Red Tent" bursts into busy activity with a catchy electro-dance harkening towards the more moody side of DEPECHE MODE. A complex but hooky little instrumental, full of interesting sounds, tracks & turns, "The Mud Club" keeps a similar, fastish BPM, using an interesting array of sounds including a nice sub-basement bass sound. The vocalist has a distinct, commercial tone, and the song she sings soon works it's way into some epidermal vantage point. "Bubble Blubber Bob" launches itself from out of a grey Industrial machine loop sound into a spacious, exploring electronic beat piece - probably too preoccupied with searching into obscure audio corners to be actually danceable. "On The Stroke Of Time" is one of the more commercial tracks on the album, with the singer hooking the listener with her strong, emotive & best of all SALEABLE voice. Again the backing owes as much to MODE as it does folk like FRONT 242. "Hi-Land Lo-Tech" again works it's way under your skin with it's bagpipe-like intro transforming into a run-seq-founded piece with lots of electronic & percussive meandering over the top. DIVE offer the next three, starting with "Running Circle", changing the whole direction of the album with it's harsh, massing discordant noise loops - dread malengines pursuing dream-trapped victims, hell-bent on blood. "Automatique" is a cold. mechanical beat piece, a slow dance of stark noises & mysterious images - as calm & methodical as heartbeat, as cold & clinical as an icepick inserted through the sternum. "Welcome To Hell Pt.2" could almost be our very own LULL, with it's opening spoken title and it's journey through hissing, rumbling soundscapes & amorphous loops. It's a long journey through barely-lit corridors of fractured pipes leaking gas & electricity - if measured by this, the subterranean road to Hell Is 8'03" long. WUMPSCUT polish off the album with a king-sized portion - 8 tracks! "Total Recall" has a huge, dramatic sound - more inclined towards film theme soundtrack sounds than actual dance music. Heavy, hard sounds combine into rock-solid, oncoming Juggernaut of a track. "Zech Groove" continues the hard attack sounds, making then more harsh - coming up with a real killer of a track; a guillotine-edged Hard Techno thing with equally discordant vocals in sawtooth gutteral German. "Ceremony" again moves towards film themes with a huge, melancholy drama piece with some superb choir-like vocal harmonies which seem to drift in from the far side of some vast cavern. Dark & tasty. "Lindbergh" jumps back into dance music mode again, this time with less harsh but no less compulsive, driving track - a thick chain of sequencers & keyboards through which snatches of spoken word are heard (about the aviator of the title). "Tschusch Domos" continues the dance theme, hardening it up for the vocalist to shout his ragged words over - corrupt, wild voice tones carried along on a medium-fast Techno vehicle, "War Combattery 2" is a milder instrumental with plenty of punch & enough kicking drive to keep anyone who's into the more harsh side of EBM happy - full of twists & turns but no real surprises. "Phistocontrol" has a quite saleable Techno sound - equally as catchy as people like DAS BOOT & UTAH SAINTS - a simple enough theme but given a machete cutting edge, honed down to killer tones by heaps of flange. It kicks up a cloud of dust as it races for its conclusion. "Irak 1" closes this interesting & collectable album with a piece blending both their dramatic synth orchestration & their electro-dance music in a track which really casts its beacon light in vivid colour upon both styles, creating a moody but light dance track.

Originally reviewed for Soft Watch.