It’s still super early in the year, and although there are some records we know we wanna hear coming out in the next few weeks (mind.in.a.box’s Revelations, the Stiff Valentine and Unit 187 remix disks, the re-release of the Acretongue album for North America), there’s a twinklin’ on the horizon of still other albums, presumably as yet unfinished and unnamed that have got us all worked up. We thought we’d write about ’em a little and share some other thoughts on stuff we’d like to see in the year to come. Read on: it’s the I Die: You Die 2012 Wishlist!
Icon of Coil
We’re very excited about the return of one of the Big Four futurepop bands (analogous to Anthrax in our match-ups with the Big Four of thrash metal as we mentioned before). Without taking anything away from Christian Lund, we’ve always felt that Seb and Andy’s work together is one of those creative pairings where the strengths of each artist are totally complimentary, to the point where the contribution of each is intractable from the other. All the IoC guys have been busy: Lund with Northborne, Andy with being the single biggest crossover artist Our Thing has produced in ages as Combichrist and the ultra-prolific Seb with a wide-ranging number of projects, including the industrial metal of Melt and the new school electro-EBM of Komor Kommando amongst others. This will be the first high-profile reunion album for a whole generation of clubgoers who came of age at the time when the trance-inflected leads and clean, super-hooky melodies ruled DJ playlists globally for a few years, and as one of the few major groups from that time to never release a disappointing record we’re pumped to find out what they have in store.
Icon Of Coil
No More “Terror” bands
No, not “terror ebm” bands (we like some of those, or Alex does anyway), we’re specifically talking about bands that insist on using some variation on the word “terror” in their name. Terrolokaust, Terrorkode, Terrorgazm, Truppenterror, Terrornation, friggin’ T3rror 3rror for god’s sake? All those of you who aren’t NYC’s venerable Terrorfakt can leave the building. Show’s over, nothin’ to see here. This shit is unseemly.
Continues
We still get sniffly thinking about the dissolution of one of most refreshing and inspirational industrial bands of all time, Babyland. Conversely, we still get goosebumps when we think about Dan Gatto’s performance at Kinetik under the banner of his new Continues project. Although we’d heard enough to know that Dan was moving in a more classically synthpop direction, we had no inkling of how strong his “synthesizer Popular” chops would prove to be, let alone how adroitly he’d be able to blend his new path with his legendary presence and passion as a frontman. Thus far we’ve been treated to a split 7″ (both of us copped that white vinyl) featuring the addictive “Love On The Run”, and between that and what we can remember (with some help from YouTube) from that performance, we’ve no doubt that Dan’s poised to release a batch of songs as poignant and heart-rending as some of Babyland’s latter era work (“LMYA”, “Search And Rescue”) hinted at.

An End to Misogyny and Racism in Videos
We’ll be charitable and refrain from mentioning any names. As industrial culture’s long history has shown, there are plenty of legitimately thought-provoking ways to engage with the uglier and more reprehensible aspects of history and culture (see Laibach) without resorting to the cheap exploitation of misogyny and prejudice. Moreover, if people want to discuss the particulars of a record or video you put out, “Laibach did it first” and “you’re trying to censor me, who are the real Nazis here?” aren’t acceptable responses. Are you actually trying to say something? Are the imagery and connotations you’re employing in the service of something beyond cheap shock tactics? We’re not fourteen anymore, and neither are you. Own your shit, or step off.
The Klinik
Word on the street has it that ID:UD staple Dirk Ivens and his old partner Marc Verhaeghen are set to record a new album under the aegis of The Klinik. Although Verhaeghen released a series of excellent instrumental records under the name and Dirk has been doing live sets of their classic material, it’s been 20 years since the classic line-up recorded together. While we endeavor not to be tedious blowhards when it comes to what begat what in Our Thing, we’re fairly certain that whole schools of industrial wouldn’t have existed without them, the influence of The Klinik’s brand of woozy, smothering menace is apparent in everything from aggrotech to the resurrection of european coldwave. It’s actually difficult to imagine what a new record could possibly sound like considering how much work each of the band’s constituents has produced in the years since Time came out, but there’s no doubt in our minds that it could be something incredible. We’ll likely be discussing the group and their legacy in greater detail in a future post here, and rest assured we’ll be keeping our ear as close to the ground as possible for more information.
The Klinik
Better Live Shows
This is an age-old complaint. We can summarize pretty effectively with a quote from Eric of Everything Goes Cold: “The onus is on the musicians in this scene to make sure that the show theyโ€™re putting on is something special enough to get people to come back.” We’re not saying that everyone has to take mind.in.a.box’s approach of entirely orchestrating their catalog to suit a fully-fledged live band on stage, but there are enough acts putting on killer live performances that the “is he checking his e-mail”, two dudes and a laptop, industrial karaoke approach ain’t gonna fly. There’s no shame in being a studio project, and we understand that the road is the best way to grow your audience, but make sure that you’re giving the people who paid their money to see you something more than they could get from listening to your record at home. ‘Nuff said.
Comaduster
We met up with Edmonton’s Real Cardinal by chance through a mutual friend (love ya, Dawnie!) and quickly bonded over our shared appreciation for Daniel Myer’s work. We were bowled over by dude’s self-released tracks, and his attention to finer details has already earned him a fanbase of no small size for someone with no official releases as of yet. How many unsigned acts hailing from our neck of the woods do you know who’ve given warmly received performances at Mutek? (You think we get chin-scratchy about IDM? You ain’t seen nothin’ ’til you’ve been to Mutek.) Anyway, dude’s already in the midst of recording his official debut this year and we’re keen to toss our lot in as ground floor supporters of a young Canadian artist as talented as Real. Just listen to the unfinished demos he’s been faithfully posting in dibs and dabs on his Facebook page. This is something worth keeping your ears open for.
Comaduster – Foam Abattoir (Comaduster remix mess) by comaduster
Kinetik 5.0
We’re five beers deep into this post, and even though you’re sure to hear us wax both nostalgic and anticipatory about Canada’s (and not to mention North America’s) pre-eminent industrial festival in the months to come, we’re already loudly excited about getting to spend four days getting yelled at by Germans in Canada’s funnest city. Absolutely nothing this side of the Atlantic can hold a candle to Kinetik (as festival vets we speak from experience), and if you’re reading this, odds are you’re the sort of person who’s bound to have an ear-splitting, liver-damaging, taste-affirming good time that you’ll never forget. Hope to see you there, first Boreale’s on you.
Stromkern
Ask heads in the know who their favourite North American artists from the early 2000s, and it’s more than likely Stromkern will come up. Hell, before we could even get started writing this, we had to take a few minutes to revisit a bunch of notorious nice guy (Chris Peterson once told us he was “a paladin in the industrial scene”) Ned Kirby’s material. “Nightriders”, “Perfect Sunrise”, “Heretic”, take your pick: dude’s staccato, rap influenced vocal delivery and lean, anthemic songs carved him a niche in the waning US scene of the era. He had a track on a Dependent comp last year, but has otherwise been pretty silent since the release of 2004’s WTII release Light It Up, and it’s certainly been our loss. We liked the rockish feel on “Sub-Librarian“, and would be happy with a whole album of it. To be honest, at least half the senior staff would buy an album of Ned doing bouzouki music, so long as he’s doing something. We’re waiting patiently for this one.
Stromkern
More Legit Goth Rock Records
Guess which senior staffer added this to the list? Okay, we get it: the long-forestalled Sisters record ain’t ever gonna happen, the Mish ain’t what they used to be, and proper goth rock’s profile in North America is pretty damn low. That said, if we can have resurgences of minimal wave, acid house, roots EBM, and coldwave (of both the European and American varieties), then surely it isn’t too much to ask to hear some new proper trad goth. Recent records from Pretentious, Moi?, Nosferatu, and The House Of Usher were all great, but there are only so many times we can listen to our Rosetta Stone albums while going for evening constitutionals in stormy weather, and it’d be awesome to hear at least a few younger bands picking up the mantle. Sure, there’s no money in the goth rock game nowadays, but the hair and music can’t be beat. (Know a young, up-and-coming band who use crimpers and pentatonic scales? Throw Bruce a bone!)
What records are you looking forward to? What trends would you like to see continue or die a swift yet painful death? Holler at us in the comments.