Happy Saint Valentine’s Day friends. Or not, whatever, the only SVD we actually care about around here is the circa-2000 electro-industrial project from Victoria, British Columbia. We have most of the platters we didn’t get to late last year cleared from the table, so you can expect to see a lot of coverage of new music coming to the site shortly, with maybe a couple more 2016 stragglers we feel the need to address in some capacity. Of course we thoroughly enjoy hearing your thoughts and suggestions regarding new music, so feel free to drop us an e-mail or leave a comment on the site, our readers have been instrumental in keeping us abreast of new music since the site’s inception. That said, have a gander at some of the tracks that have been heard in the HQ as of late.

Jamie Blacker, the best dressed man in industrial.

ESA, “In Good Faith”
I Die: You Die favourite Jamie Blacker comes out swinging with his first release for new label Negative Gain Productions. The Hold EP is a bridge of sorts between the project’s Themes of Carnal Empowerment series of LPs, and the forthcoming album scheduled for late this year. Do you like unsettling, cinematic soundscapes rife with violent drumsounds and off-kilter vocals? That’s exactly what you’re getting here, and we wouldn’t want it any other way.

Eye Steal, “Better Than You’re Worth”
Negative Gain continue to dig out new North American talent, too. Toronto’s Eye Steal are the label’s latest addition, and the follow-up to their self-released EP’ll be out sometime this summer. The first bit of business from that release to surface is a seething bit of business which pulses with a tension that’s never given release. Equal parts early Ulterior and Human Traffic-style meanness? Colour us interested.

Death in Rome, “Toxic”
Maybe it’s because we’ve been spending so much time thinking about Laibach lately (check the We Have a Commentary we released on Saturday for more of that), but man is this cover of Britney’s “Toxic” (arguably the best pop single of the millennium thus far) by neo-folk pranksters Death in Rome hitting the spot. Goodness only knows what theoretical connection between Ms. Spears and Emil Cioran their might be beyond sharing space in the Youtube cover art, but as with all of DiR’s covers the arrangement transcends the gimmick for some real magic. You catch that Prodigy sample?

Night Sins, “Crystal Blue”
Somewhere between debut LP New Grave and follow-up To London Or The Lake, Philly’s Night Sins decided to go whole hog with the gothier side of their sound, smothering their entire arrangements with murky, purple fog and allowing synths to carry much more of the melodic load. This first hint of third LP Dancing Chrome seems to continue in that vein, with some classically morose yet catty vocals and a Children On Stun feel to the drum machine. We’ll check in with the full release when it’s out in May.

Empathy Test, “By My Side”
You know that thing where you hear about a band for the first time and suddenly it seems like they’re everywhere? Such is the case with the UK’s electropop duo Empathy Test. Our pal Rexx Arkana hipped us to them back in December, the next thing we know they’re playing Planet Myer day and getting rave reviews for their melancholic and melodic singles from all corners. We’ll have something to share with regards to the band shortly (like maybe even this week or early next week!) but in the meantime you should peep their forthcoming single “By My Side” and feel hella emotions. We’re right there with you, dear reader.

Templer, “The Last Walk”
SΛRIN’s Emad Dabiri’s move to Berlin continues to pay off for his X-IMG label. Fellow ex-pat Thomas Chalandon (by way of France) has an impending tape which, by the sounds of this cut, should appeal to folks who not only have been enjoying new techno-industrial from the continent but also have a soft spot for old hardcore…albeit sounding like it’s been slowed down by half and dragged through broken glass.