Between the arrival of Spotify in Canada and the ever-growing “shit to listen to” pile building up in our digital and physical mailboxes, it’s not like we’re starved for choice when it comes to new music to listen to here at ID:UD HQ. That said, personal preference of course sets in, and for every misguided “plz chek out mai trap mix ov iggy azalea” e-mail we get, there’s at least one stone classic (or semi-obscure oddball) industrial band we realize we haven’t heard from in a while. Maybe we look out the window. Maybe we make a cup of tea. Maybe the rhythmic patter of the rain outside only makes their absence all the more apparent. It’s in that spirit that we offer up this batch of a dozen industrial bands we’d love to have a new release from. As always, your mileage may vary, and we’d love to hear whose Facebook page yr anxiously refreshing in hopes of a new album announcement.
A scene fixture with a unique CV (who else has done time working with Psychic TV, Foetus, Neubauten and KMFDM?), Raymond Watts is one of Our Thing’s most beloved cult figures, a dude who’s own solo industrial rock material has collected him a tidy number of followers. While it’s been about 9 years since Watts’ last Pig album Pigmata came out, there was some suggestion he was working on new stuff for it, namely the release of two collabs with Cubanate’s Marc Heal on Soundcloud a while back. Hell, it’s not even like he’s been hard to find as he’s been involved with numerous projects in various capacities as a songwriter, producer and arranger, including some recent soundtrack work under his own name. Still, there’s a loyal cadre of fans waiting to snap up some of that new sick stuff under the Pig name the moment it surfaces, whenever that may be.
By Any Means Necessary
In retrospect, Sam Witherspoon was ahead of the curve in dropping an LP of gritty electro-industrial shot through with a DIY approach and plenty of Puppy love back in 2011. Since then acts skewing a bit more towards the EBM spectrum (Youth Code, High-Functioning Flesh) have set the world on fire while still offering the same no-frills approach to classic industrial sounds as BAMN. Witherspoon’s kept his hat in the ring with a split release in the interim (and we have word of a possible collaborative project also in the works), but we’d love to hear what a new spate of By Any Means Necessary tunes would sound like in 2014 or 2015, and we imagine plenty of other listeners would as well (even if they don’t know it yet).
Oooh Raoul! Now we’ve seen the mighty purveyor of sexy noise (and presumably noisy sex?) a couple times in the years since the release of his last LP (the self-released Brain on Rotation in 2006) and each time we were taken by how well the man who coined the term “power noise” came across on stage. It was at the last of those shows at Kinetik in 2012 that Raoul announced a new project mysteriously attributed to “Noisex.Extended” called Next. No word on what it is specifically or when we might hear it, but if experience has taught us anything, it’ll likely be loud, rhythmic and involve some industrial-grade booty shaking.
Snow in China
More of a “whatever happened to that guy?” than many entries on this list, Snow in China was the electro-industrial project of a dude who went by the moniker of Dread, and who released precisely one album and one EP in the early mid-oughts. There’s precious little information about the project online (fun fact: the only bands still connected with them on the pulverized cadaver of Myspace are the similarly MIA acts The Retrosic and KiEw), but the record itself has held up quite well: Electromensch was an anomalous throwback to dark electro during the ascent of aggrotech and it’s thoughtful programming was occasionally likened to the concurrently debuting mind.in.a.box. Anyone with any information on whatever happened to the guy behind “Mindsucker” and “Blackbox” should get in touch, we’d love to know if he’s done anything else.
It might be a bit selfish of us to ask for new material from a project as long in the tooth and as foundational as Sweden’s Deutsch Nepal, but hell, maybe we’re selfish people. Regardless, it’s been three years since Amygdala, and unlike plenty of other martial masters Peter Andersson has done a pretty canny job of maintaining a jovial social media presence. Heck, there’s even a handful of US and UK gigs in the near future. In other words, things are obviously still in motion, and we hopefully won’t have to tack a DN album onto our 2016 wishlist.
One of the most crucial bits of ID:UD lore is that years before we formed this incarnation of the site, we interviewed Andy Meya of Forma Tadre. That formative experience made us realise that, yeah, we could write about the sort of music we loved, and maybe even with some input from those behind it from time to time. Forma Tadre’s stayed quiet since (still chronically underrated) The Music of Erich Zann, but the mixture of smart and austere programming with swooping, dramatic strings that Meya and Meya alone is able to conjure up is something we can’t get out of our heads, and would love another dose of.
Okay, Professor Ned isn’t even slightly hard to track down, and this is mostly our passive aggressive way of nudging him to release some new tunes. Alright, it hasn’t been that long since 2012’s Dead Letters EP, but the intriguingly organic sound of that release really primed the pump around the HQ for more and we’ve been waiting since. Judging by the relatively high placement of “Night Riders” in David Schock’s 101 Greatest Industrial Songs Poll from a few years back, we aren’t the only ones wistfully checking the band’s Facebook for any signs of a new record from one the great millenial industrial scene acts. Stand up!
Some local colour! Sure, maybe Decree wouldn’t have been making this list if the band had managed to get a couple of local gigs together, but the fact remains that it’s been a few years since the monstrously stomping Fateless, and Chris Peterson’s crew of misanthropic bastards is still one of the acts which out of towners ask us about most regularly when the subject of Vancouver industrial music comes up. Your guess is as good as ours as far as when we’ll get another slab out of this outfit, dear reader, but we’ll do our best to nudge and annoy Chris the next time we bump into him at the bar.
Perhaps a bit unfair of us to include the long-running German electronic project on this list, what with singer Stefan Ackermann having had some life-threatening health problems a few years back. What with the band’s return to the world of live performance at WGT last year, we can’t help but wonder if we’ll also see a new album from the dramatic duo, whose last album from 2006 Cabaret found them scaling still grander heights of drama in the already pretty theatrical neue deutsche todeskunst. They’re actually the sort of band who are due for a revival of sorts, as their particularly german style and presentation seem like they could appeal to the new fans of dark music coming in via the indie scene.
Okay, okay: we had to wait a full ten years between Nord and Olivier Moreau’s reconfiguring of the celebrated Imminent Starvation project under the Imminent moniker, so maybe five years isn’t so long of a hiatus. That said, in those ten years Moreau found a way to rework his classic powernoise template to suit an era in which pure bludgeoning force was expected to be metered with some harmonics, and the resulting Cask Strength album showcased a different side of Moreau’s programming abilities. Even if it’s just a retread or consolidation of that sound, it’d be fun (and dare we say important) to see how another few years in the cellar might have treated Moreau’s finely distilled spirit.
Run Level Zero
Sweden’s Run Level Zero really seemed to hit their stride with 2008’s Arctic Noise: a compelling blend of classic Canadian-inspired electro-industrial sounds and immediate and club-friendly structures. After a knockout set at Kinetik 3, we’ve heard very little from that crew, but don’t think that we’re hankering after new stuff for entirely selfish reasons: tunes like “Black Cinder” and “Hand To Mouth” blew up Vancouver dancefloors and we’d love to keep feeding the people more of what they want.
Round the turn of the century when many so-called futurepop acts were raiding trance for its dopiest arpeggios and faux-emotional builds, Alex Matheu’s Negative Format was exploring the spacey realms of psy-trance via the vehicle of EBM. The complexity of the project’s albums was especially notable for the time, and as it evolved towards their last full-length record (2008’s Gradients) which reconciled both worlds in a suite of very well produced tunes. Alls been quiet on the western front since then though, and while a track called “Axioms” surfaced in 2012, there’s no news if there’ll be another LP. We’d love to hear what Matheu is doing now, as someone who always had an ear for thoughtful use of genre tropes in his work it’d be cool to hear exactly what if any influence the last five years of electronic music made it’s way into his mix.