Mind & Flesh – Martyr Generation CD Force Majeure 2012
Although Norway might not be a highly recognised country for death industrial and power electronics music, this has done little to hamper the enthusiasm of Anders B with his Mind & Flesh project. It also seems this is not Anders first release, as he has previously issued two albums under a separate moniker Babyflesh, before rebooting under the guise of this new project name.
Being the Mind & Flesh debut, ‘Martyr Generation’ consists of nine tracks recorded between 2005-2008 and by way of indicative sonic markers, this is musically in the vicinity of early Genocide Organ, early Haus Arafna, Brighter Death Now etc, yet does manage to evoke a sound of its own. Overall the album follows a path of being loose and unpolished in delivery, being built on repeated looped structures to form the basis of each piece. Likewise the tracks are structured enough to not appear improvised, but chaotic enough to suit its death industrial/ power electronics guise.
The roughly stilted loops and acerbic distorted vocals of ‘Walking Target’ introduce the album and include the dually consoling/ menacing lyrics of: “I will keep you safe. Nothing is going harm you. As long as you play my game”. Yet things really kick in with full force on ‘From the Cradle to the Grave’ with fast, pulsing metallic loops and flanged vocals that hint at the vocal style delivery of the Grey Wolves. This track is blunt and to the point and all the more effective for it, and continues in a similar stylistic slant on ‘Alone Against All’ which also brings the mid era Brighter Death Now compassions to the fore. The elongated length of ‘Blodskam’ evokes some great droning death industrial (complete with distant wailing chants), whilst ‘Destroyers’ achieves a more loose rhythmic sound with its various loops and decent amount of crisp and sharp distortion. Noting that ‘Purgatorium’ is credited to both Mind & Flesh and Atrax Morgue (aka the late Marco Corbelli who regrettably committed suicide in 2007), there is no further information regarding this collaboration, but obviously this was composed before Marco’s untimely passing. Here ‘Purgatorium’ presents a cavernous atmosphere built with a basic yet crushing beat and sermon like distortion treated vocals, being broadly characteristic of the minimalist approach of Atrax Morgue. Alternately the final track ‘Clashing Icons’ bleeds out over an extended 10 minute length, evoking a cavernous death ambient soundscape of echoes, metallic textures and occasional vocal wails (…a commendable conclusion which is certainly a hell of a lot calmer than much of the material which precedes it).
With ‘Martyr Generation’ Mind & Flesh delivers a solid and no frills death industrial/ power electronics album. Whilst it may display its influences fairly prominently, when armed with such conviction and delivered with such passion as displayed here, it provides Mind & Flesh with requisite individualistic flair, thus worthy of full attention.