I’ve been wanting to hear more of Amnistia since I first heard them on a compilation (Advanced Electronics Vol.6, in fact), after a friend pointed me in the direction of it, suggesting that it might be just the kind of thing I’d like.
He wasn’t wrong, either – rather than following the current fad for techno/hard-dance influenced “industrial”, Amnistia hark back to the 90s, to the kind of stompingly heavy industrial Front Line Assembly used to do so well. All the elements are here – the beats, the old-school programming, the danceable rhythms, and the dark, oppressive atmospheres.
Interestingly live the vocals didn’t appear to be treated at all, which added a little more human element: and the friendly band, offering some banter from the stage – not to mention inserting a verse from Amy Winehouse‘s Rehab into the intro for one track! – clearly gained themselves a fair number of new fans from their impressive half-hour set.
I’m still not exactly sure what it is about Reaper that I’m missing. They appeared to be hugely popular with the crowd last night – and indeed, had a bigger crowd than the headliners – but once again they simply left me cold. I think part of the reason is that they are doing nothing that I can’t hear done better by other artists. They have the stompy, wannabe “evil” sound of Suicide Commando, they try and channel a dancefloor sensibility that Modulate have done so much better, and live the vocals sound dreadful (not to mention a guitarist who I’m pretty sure wasn’t actually playing a note live, although he struck some cool rock-star poses). This is lowest common denominator stuff, that appeals to the masses, clearly, but really, we deserve better than this.
Suffering In Solitude
On the back of their best album since their debut, [:SITD:] were on fighting form, wasting no time in laying down the “bone-crunching beats” that they do so well. In a notable contrast to the last time they played here, there was no tailing off in the set, or any chance for things to get boring. The setlist this time was much better paced, with the faster-paced tracks from the new album keeping things ticking over nicely. It was also proof of just how good some of the new material is, too, in that some of the tracks from the last couple of albums were put in the shade by them – in particular Rot V1.0 and Pharmakom are going to become big club hits, that I have no doubt. It was also nice to hear the old hits, too (Laughingstock was a pounding highlight), and also to see a band enjoying and feeding off the positive reaction and interaction with a crowd that knew the band’s material well. So, something of a rebirth, perhaps for [:SITD:]? It certainly appeared that way to me.