Music review: ‘Phuture Doom’

OWSLA Records has cranked out another groundbreaking record by a mysterious electronic trio from Detroit that claims it may know the key to taking over the world. It was released on Guy Fawkes Day too – coincidence?

This dark unnamed trio describes their music as “worldview merging occult ritual and transhumanism – an audiovisual infrastructure of clashing system functions – a revelation of human choices.” As you can probably tell, this is not for everyone.

Their first track, entitled “La Grande Messe Noire” is a fusion of a breathy rotary organ and deep, echoing male choir chanting mysterious tongues that open the doors to a contrasting sound in their next song, called “Burn The Knowledge.”

“Burn The Knowledge” is a fusion of heavy thrash metal drumming, crunchy guitar riffs and artificial repetitive mosh-producing bass synthesizers. After an unrelenting assault on the aural senses, it drops right into “Black Acid Reign,” filled with overloaded Moog basslines taking familiar sounds to dark new levels with screaming analog goodness.

“Han Brakes,” my personal favorite of the album, starts off with a New York House-style bassline with tribal chanting and hand drumming over it, giving the listener a peek at two mysterious worlds, the past and the Phuture. If you don’t start headbanging as soon as the chorus hits, you must not be hearing it clearly. Just when you can’t stand any more awesomeness, it drops in some ‘80s scratch samples in the same pattern as the lead FM bass synth. Woah, where did that come from and why does it work? Oh, more church choir? All right then, I’m not questioning it.

“Mach 100,” brings back drum n’ bass in a big way. Mind-bending and fast, this one makes you feel like you’re on a racetrack going, like the title suggests, one hundred times the speed of sound. If it was any more than two and a half minutes, you might start getting dizzy. It ends with a crash and a crowd cheering, segueing straight into “Doom Terror Corps.”

This song takes hardstyle to a new level and sounds like a live performance with an emcee chanting, “Put y’all lighters in the air” during the buildup. When it does drop, a high-pitched ghostly voice sings, “Each time that darkness falls” with a pumping 808 kick keeping it right on time. This song is a party-starter for the darkest of raves.

“Rites” kicks off with a lightning crash and eerie backwards chanting over a Deadmau5 -like synthesizer pad, but much darker, of course. The groovy industrial drums kick in. It’s like Korn meets the soundtrack to the Matrix. It’s relaxing…relatively.

“Paradise Lost” kicks off with some more dark chants and added creepy laughter, along with rap vocals resembling Foreign Beggars (why didn’t they get them in there?) over some more of those addicting industrial drums. The scratchy high-pitch synthesis contrasts perfectly with the “wall of sound” coming from the extremely low-pitched guitar riffs, each participating in a call and response groove from Hell.

During another deep chanting segue, you come to realize that the album is a journey through the darkest depths possible in electronic music. Perfect timing, giving that the next track is titled “Phuneral Phuture.” Wow, this one is creepy, with an intro that sounds like a graveyard. This song may be the darkest on the album.

“Exodus,” aptly named for being the last song on the album, rises to a repetitive piano pattern like the Saw theme, “Hello Zepp.” Obviously, good vibes all around. Epic horns are then layered over it with eerie tribal stick clicks. Then silence. Just when you thought it was over, a herald of Star Wars-like fanfare lets you know – Phuture Doom is going to rule the world.

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