In December of 1979 “Throbbing Gristle” released their “Industrial” classic 20 Jazz Funk Greats. Don’t let the name fool you, you won’t hear Jazz or Funk on this record, instead you’ll hear 11 tracks of uncompromising Industrial that incorporates various elements of Synth-Pop, Post-Punk, and Disco, but these genres are mutilated and drenched in the band’s anti-music style. The lyrical content consists of erotic themes and taboo subject matter, because, well….. it’s Throbbing Gristle. About the misleading and quite humorous album cover, member Cosey Fanni Tutti has stated “We did the cover so it was a pastiche of something you would find in a Woolworth’s bargain bin. We took the photograph at the most famous suicide spot in England, called Beachy Head. So, the picture is not what it seems, it is not so nicey nicey at all, and neither is the music once you take it home and buy it. We had this idea in mind that someone quite innocently would come along to a record store and see the record and think they would be getting 20 really good Jazz/Funk greats, and then they would put it on at home and they would just get decimated.” This album is regarded by many as the band’s best work, and it’s hard to argue with that. This was some of the most unique and innovative music unlike anything that came out of the 70’s, and is still a tough and incredibly disturbing listen today, and let’s not forget the massive influence the band had on all of the Industrial artists that followed. Happy Anniversary.
And the award for song title of the year goes to….. Seriously, there’s nothing like listening to Street Sects’ music and brutally screaming out your existential pain. They’re truly a genuine band who pour everything they have onto their music, and it’s captivating. The band will release their new E.P. Gentrification IV: Suspended from Gallery Rails this Friday via “The Flenser,” and today they have shared a music video for the opening track “If Life is a Gift, It’s in Very Poor Taste.” You can watch the music video below:
On this day in 1989 “Industrial” legends “Ministry” released their fourth album The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste.” Diving further into the “Thrash Metal” leanings that popped up on their previous album The Land of Rape and Honey, The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Taste was the first album that found the band fully developing their signature style of Thrash-leaning “Industrial Metal” with countless samples and unrelenting heaviness. Sole member Al Jourgensen has been vocal about his disappointment with this album, citing the chaotic background of the recording and the fact that him and pivotal band-mate Paul Barker were never in the same room during the recording of the album as the reason for that, but that chaos translated to the music quite well with it’s aggressive and terrifying darkness. This album was the complete reinvention of the band. A reinvention that still hasn’t been matched to this day. Happy Anniversary.
On this day in 1989 “Nine Inch Nails” released their groundbreaking debut album Pretty Hate Machine. Recorded almost entirely by sole member Trent Reznor, this album took the “Industrial” style and combined it with elements of “Pop” with traditional verse-chorus structure that added accessibility as opposed to bands such as “Ministry” or “Skinny Puppy” whose music was on the more harsh and tumultuous side. This was the beginning of Reznor’s typical lyrical themes of angst, depression, obsession, addiction, society, and religion, and the sincerity of it all still to this day can resonate with anyone whom feels misunderstood and alienated. Sure this album sounds instrumentally skeletal compared to what followed in the “Nine Inch Nails” discography, but I can’t think of a better starting point for what became an important legacy in music history. Happy Anniversary.
As far as i’m concerned, “Chelsey and the Noise” are one of the most innovative acts in Industrial/EBM music today. They adopt traditional Industrial sensibilities all while fearlessly incorporating a darker version of Pop to make us dance and even Metal to make us thrash. Halloween is upon us, so of course we need a new track from the duo, and on their new single appropriately titled “Are You Afraid?” they deliver an enticing combination of EBM, Metal, and even a little Trap, proving once again that they aren’t afraid to drag the genre of Industrial kicking and screaming into the new age. Don’t be afraid to listen to this track. Link below:
Noise/Industrial duo “Street Sects” have undoubtedly been on a roll since the release of their “Gentrification” EP’s back in 2014. Following the success of their string of singles, an E.P. and two full-length albums, the idea of the band continuing their harsh and abrasive “Gentrification” series seemed unlikely, but earlier this year we were treated to a third installment titled Gentrification III: Death and Displacement, and it was as Hellish as one would expect. Now, a month later, the band have announced that they will release the fourth installment of this series on November 22nd via “The Flenser.” It will be titled Gentrification IV: Suspended from Gallery Rails. Today the band shared one out of the two tracks titled “Tomorrow is a Trap,” and it’s back to business as usual, which makes the band so damn enticing. You can listen to “Tomorrow is a Trap” below:
On this day in 1999 “Nine Inch Nails” released their masterpiece The Fragile, a double album that was a big departure from it’s predecessor The Downward Spiral. Moving away from the harsher noise-infused tumult of The Downward Spiral, which reflected songwriter Trent Reznor’s descent into madness, The Fragile found Reznor incorporating elements of “Ambient,” “Electro,” eerie soundscapes, and even a little “Hip Hop,” but wasn’t any less self-reflective. The lyrical themes of depression, isolation, and drug addiction continued. If The Downward Spiral was the soundtrack to someone’s descent into depression, addiction, and nihilism, then The Fragile was the ultimate coping method and state of realization. It was the sadness that follows the anger, and it was an incredible end of an era for “Nine Inch Nails.” Happy 20th anniversary.