Xiphoid Dementia – Might is Blight review in Special Interests #2

23 August 2010 xdementia No Comment

The boys over at Special Interests have been kind enough to write an extremely comprehensive and detailed review of Xiphoid Dementia’s Might is Blight CD released by Existence Establishment and still available from the shop.

Here is the review in it’s entirety:

Comparing this to past CDR works I have heard from this American project, and most of all comments I have heard from less open-minded noise crowd, I must say I was taken by surprise. Progression has been great. And even steps towards originality and more ambitious fields of creation. Xiphoid Dementia is known for rejecting almost everything what is “old school” or “filthy”, and aim towards high production values, high fidelity, cinematic mix of sound effects and electronics, combined with modern visual design. It is guaranteed that all these things are major turn-off for many people who prefer crude or analogue approach, but you simply can’t ignore the undeniable talent and unique approach what CD presents.

1st two tracks set the standards high. Combination of modern day martial industrial and highly layered sound of 2000s neo-power electronics and crispy noise is simply good. Opening piece is almost like putting together Karjalan Sissit and Control with noise effects. Symphonic classical tones, militaristic drum beats, synthesizer noise and clashing metal sounds all blend in perfectly. And despite song clocks for lengths what many could expect to become boring, Xiphoid Dementia doesn’t let same thing go on for too long. It’s merely 4 first minutes before track takes new turns, which makes whole composition more than typical method of just sampling few loops from classical music albums.

I think what has turned off people are examples such as track #3 and 4. Third track shows bands most mediocre face with droning modern day power electronics with unusually weak vocal performance. Fourth track begins with movie sampled car break screeching/crushing/collision/helicopter/tanks rolling type of atmosphere, what rather gives impression of digitally treated movie soundtracks, than something you’d associate with art for actual listening purposes? But even it progresses much further, turning enjoyable in the end. Best tracks are constantly on the move. They won’t go into route of simply looping or monotonic repetition, but song can actually surprise or at least progress into completely new sounds during its time.

Album is half hit/half miss. The best tracks are simply something one must hear to be able to witness how far genre has gone, even from days of Propergol or such, which must be obvious influences for XD. In other hand, there are weaker tracks including long beginning of last track, where melodic new age synth works are on background and digitally clear distorted squealing vocals are on front. Nearly like more recent Prurient tracks. With more innovative actually composed keyboard tones BUT much much weaker vocal performance. You have to wait about 6 minutes until track reaches its highlights, and it is nearly enough to ruin the atmosphere of the album.

74 minutes is indeed FULL LENGTH. With couple tracks removed and perhaps 45 minutes long playingtime, it would be much better. Allowing few times album to play from beginning to end, it becomes more audible how it would benefit from being less in length, since nevertheless you will be bombarded with details and sonic substance. – Mikko Aspa

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