Industrial Just Won’t Die
Convenience may only be the forth full-length studio album Die Warzau has managed to release since their inception in 1988, but this Chicago duo values quality over quantity. This release assembles the best parts of their city’s infamous industrial style into a solid release with enough smart songwriting to keep it from sounding like leftovers from the early 90’s.Jim Marcus’s voice is smooth and dark in delivery, building into mechanical monotone rants and blown-out distorted choruses that call to mind moments of KMFDM and Sister Machine Gun. Van Christie’s production is in top form, providing the tracks with a firm musical backbone. Layers of samples, crunchy noise, tight beats and sinister basslines propel the songs forward in a delectably dismal blend of electronica and darkwave.
Convenience is a heavy offering at 16 tracks spanning over an hour, but the perfectly executed flow from one song to the next keeps this album from feeling excessive. The seamless segue from the slow and gloomy “Curious” to the 80’s throwback of “Gone Chemical” is just one example of the successfully calculated pacing throughout this album. Later, the soft ballad “Kleen” collides into the blaring noise of “King of Rock and Roll” with an electronic chirp that literally sounds as if the controls are being hijacked mid-album, only to melt back into the bouncing upbeat “Come As You Are.”
Die Warzau have resorted to releasing their own work on the artist-owned independent label Pulseblack, which encourages file sharing and champions artistic freedom over legal constraints. This can only be a sign of more good things to come in hopefully a more timely succession.