Negru Voda / Knös – Face Without Face CDr Malignant Records 2013
This new release from the Malignant Records stables constitutes a split album featuring two Swedish underground industrial projects, of which Negru Voda will be the more well-known given Peter Nyström’s long establishment under the Negru Voda moniker (…as well as his previous involvement in the legendary Megaptera). Regarding Knös, whilst there is not much available information (other than being a solo project of one Fredrik Djurfeldt who issued a CDr back in 2008), their sound is at least entirely comparable and complimentary to that of Negru Voda.
For this split each act present 5 tracks each (first half to Negru Voda and the second half to Knös), which can be broadly categorised under an old school Swedish death industrial banner and a collective sound which emulates the gloomy analogue sound set down during the birth of the genre (aka early 1990’s). Yet given how closely these two acts align in feel, there is not much to be gained by splitting hairs to differentiate the sound between the two halves. Ultimately what we have here are two separate acts that are individually focused on delivering grim and pitch black, death industrial music. Being entirely driven by the ambience of idling engines and the clatter of mechanical factory processes, a heavy dose of random deep bass thuds, distorted radio chatter and smatterings of metallic clangs all add to the general meat grinding atmosphere. Whilst selected tracks are slow and murky in pace, alternately others step up a notch with heavy, pounding industrial beats in both rhythmic and arrhythmic patterns. However as is characteristic with this style, these never representing anything close to a dance floor beat.
Spanning 52 minutes ‘Face Without Face’ is utilitarian in approach and is exactly what should be expected from old school Swedish death industrial music. Clearly as neither act is looking to break conventions, this simply achieves a solid slab of caustic death industrial musings. Although a Cdr, this is pro-duplicated release in a limitation of a mere 150 copies.