Statiqbloom - Kain

Sonic Groove

Fade Kainer’s Statiqbloom has undergone a rapid series of changes over the past few years. From shifting from a solo project to a duo, to moving away from the dense, nightmarish electro-industrial sound which had defined the first half of the project to the windswept and forlorn minimalism of 2019’s Beneath The Whelm, to a sudden relocation to Germany and a shift back to a solo project for 2022’s markedly TBM-styled Threat. New LP Kain (and second on Sonic Groove) indicates that this turbulence might have passed, with Kainer very much following in the style of Threat.

Pieces like “Fire Of The Heart” with its cascading tumbles of distortion following each kick and the wormy, phasing shuffle of “Obsidian Obscura” are well-representative of the distinct Berlin flavour of this new incarnation of Statiqbloom. To wit, between Threat and Kain Statiqbloom now distinctly reads as a techno body music entity. Again, it’s a style Kainer is clearly invested in consolidating within Statiqbloom, but that new identity comes with the tradeoff of the dark psychedelia which defined early releases by the project, not to mention the risk of repetition. While there’s nothing wrong with tracks like “Cold Steel Howl” or “Treacherous Eyes” down the stretch, there isn’t enough to distinguish them from what’s come before; this is a style which is at times a difficult fit for the LP format.

There are moments which distinguish Kain from the broader TBM world, and which do show some links back to early Statiqbloom. The icy pads which shimmer in and out of focus on opener “Face Annihilation”evoke The Klinik at their most ghostly, and the sprained electro shudders of “Hidden From Form” are reminiscent of Statiqbloom debut Mask Visions Poison, which digs down to the earliest and most primitive foundations of dark electro and waters them with bile.

Projects making significant changes in style rather than standing pat is always going to prompt a range of reactions, and there’s a good case to be made that after the high water mark of Asphyxia Statiqbloom would have benefited from such a shift. As of now Statiqbloom’s two techno industrial styled records have yet to reach a comparable level in that new terrain, but given Kainer’s progressive refinement of the project’s original formula, another leap forward isn’t impossible, whether within Statiqbloom’s current milieu or some heretofore unknown one.

Buy it.