In Search of Death – III CD Death Continues Records 2015
In Search of Death is the project of Xavier H, label boss of Death Continues Records, which perfectly aligns with the focus and output of the label to date. Likewise with the liner notes highlighting that this material was recorded some 12 years ago in 2003, sonically it is more akin to having being recorded an further 12 years prior given it has a particular tone and feel of death industrial music recorded in the early 1990’s. To then talk of further early 1990’s inspiration, the chosen project name is an obvious homage to Atrax Morgue by using one of Marco’s album titles.
Although released in 2015 evidently In Search of Death is not a currently active musical project, rather was only operational between 1999 and 2003. Yet despite recording a large volume of work at the time, none have been formally released until now, which perhaps also explains the title of ‘III’ although being the first release from the project. 10 untitled compositions make up the album, which are all staunchly of a dank, analog driven, death industrial sound.
With a pitch black tone and slightly muffled aura (although the album has been mastered by Peter Andersson for added volume and impact), the tracks utilise full range of tried and true death industrial sonic elements. As such the compositions rely on well-defined structures and combinations of the idling of fractured industrial machinery, conveyor belt rhythms, stormy loops, muffled cascading distortion, menacing pounding beats, ominous synths stabs and smattering of dialogue samples on a couple of tracks (being exclusively in French their meaning and intent is entirely missed). Although my way of a minor criticism it might be said that there are a couple of included tracks which feel undercooked and simplistic in execution, which tend to mar an otherwise strong collection of material (an example would be the somewhat ‘jolly’ quasi-orchestral/ militant structure of track IX).
Clearly the Death Continues Records label had identified a particular death industrial niche and all of the label’s output to date has sought to maintain this approach and focus. Noting this approach is also a type of homage to the likes of Slaughter Productions, In Search of Death’s album perfectly fits the label’s chosen niche and positively continues such an agenda.