My introduction to Genghis Tron was hearing their song “Board Up The House”. It was so different from most of the stuff that is out there that I decided to buy the cd when I found it in a local indie record store. This is a really good cd. The music is very dark and highly original. Its like a mix of early 1980’s synthesizer music, death metal, with a little NIN mixed in. I cannot really understand the lyrics that are screamed and sung but I read them in the cd booklet and they are very bleak and disturbing indeed. If you are bored with most of the music that is out there and want something completely different and adventurous, then I recommend this release highly.
The enigmatic trio known as GENGHIS TRON weave an ocean-sized orchestra from just a few instruments and machines. On GT’s vivid palette of sound and texture, giant riffs and frenetic beats make perfect sense next to haunting vocal melodies and moments of subtle beauty. In their hands, machines pulse and polar opposites fit together seamlessly. The bands long-awaited Relapse debut ’Board Up the House’ spills over with eleven tracks combining the extremes of modern rock music into a totally unique, completely unforgettable album experience unlike any other. ’Board Up the House’ is really the sound of the future colliding with the present with enough force to tattoo itself forever upon the mind.
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If you enjoy their first album “Dead Mountain Mouth” youll like this. The intensity is taken down a little bit but not by much. The album runs longer than their last release with a good mix of shorter songs and a few longer songs.
With the release of 2006’s “Dead Mountain Mouth”, Genghis Tron established themselves as one of the more unique experimental “noise” bands, alongside the likes of Ephel Duath and Dillinger Escape Plan. Combining sporadic blasts of atonal fury with darker, atmospheric electronica, “Dead Mountain Mouth” was a contrasting and masterfully crafted release.
With 2008’s “Board up the House”, Genghis Tron lean in another direction. Though the basic elements are still intact, in “Board up the House”, Genghis have decided to take themselves a bit more seriously. The electronica and noise sections don’t contrast as much as they compliment each other. Rather than shocking the listener with the illogical wedding of straightforward 4/4 synth sections and blast beats, Genghis Tron seem to mix them together, displaying a new dimension of careful compositional efforts. Consequently, the “noise” sections have been “watered down” a bit to better fit its’ counterpart.
Overall, “Board up the House” is much more accomplished than any preceding Genghis Tron effort. However, if the listener is particularly partial to the bizarre contrasting fury of “Dead Mountain Mouth”, he or she should be warned that it still exists, though it exists to a lesser extent.
I pre-ordered this CD and have been loving it every since it came out. It shows a fair amount of maturity over GT’s previous efforts. The boys have found a way to give coherence to the chaos, and rather than that being a bad thing, it comes out sounding like they’ve hit their stride. This album sounds smart, layered and finished.
In my opinion, this album sounds more ‘heavy metal’ than their previous efforts. There are moments on the cd that sound like a garden variety metal band. Thankfully these moments don’t last more than a few seconds, and it generally adds to the ‘thickness’ of the sound rather than sounding generic. I think this mostly comes from the new drum sound (Drumkit From Hell, maybe?) and the new guitar amp. Take that as you will, but either way I think this album has cemented GT’s place as America’s greatest band and puts them among the most important groups of artists working in any media. Support these guys. I don’t give 5 star reviews very often.
A crazily ticking metronome with an odd beat opens up 2008’s Board Up the House. It serves as a good expectation of what’s about to come; an ungainly mixture of grind’s menace and speed, Coil-like electronic weirdness, and a more advanced sense of space and depth. The vocals come in two shapes, one being a paralyzing screech that reminds you A LOT like Jacob Bannon, and the other is a somewhat robotic and haunting clean vox full of sad and creepy melody. The drums feel less mechanical, more human. Toolkit from Hell I think.
“Board Up the House” begins the album with an extended statement of what’s to come. Everything is more integrated, looser while fitting more ingeniously with each riff/keyboard lead. The all out balls to the wall destruction isn’t as haywire as before, but song’s flow is incredible.
Next comes the blasting cybergrind of “Endless Teeth” and leads the way to “Things Don’t Look Good” This gives you the first peak at GT’s way with melody. An ambient piece noodles around until “I Won’t Come Back Alive.” This song is more of the same formula, but with the same sense of epic approach. And when you spark up the joint you’ll realize this album is a lot more doom-y and trippy than any band mashing such parts together ever should. “City on a Hill” is similar to the title track from Dead Mountain Mouth, and the next two songs continue in similar fashion.
Then, as if to let you know this band is still as heavy as the last two albums, Greg Puciato from the Dillinger Escape Plan pops in to drop a bomb. “The Feast” is one of the most jarring, searing, and face-destroying pieces GT has done. A slight interlude goes on before the last track arrives. At over 10 minutes, “Relief” winds it’s grand scope with a doom atmosphere convincingly, the repetitive voyage comes out as a beauty of an ending to a brilliant album.
As with any Genghis Tron release, it will take repeated listens for everything to sink in. First few listens feels like an impenetrable blast of power, but it will reveal itself. And once it does, you’ll be left enjoying one of the best experimental metal albums of 2008.