Album Review: KMFDM – Blitz

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The industrial standard for five-letter words known as KMFDM returns this year with the album Blitz, and if we were searching for a phenomenal recording to top more lo toned replications like Cult of Static then this is it. Leave it to programming expert Tim Skold to have his hands in the cookie jar of the group whose members appear everywhere between similar acts like Pigface, Schaft and Slick Idiot to name a few.

While this band’s style is definitely standard issue in the world of industrial and possibly even trance (example of the latter being “Bait and Switch”), they have by no means gone soft. As a matter of fact, the sound doesn’t feel stayed at all, though it’s often imitated both well and badly (with the former being Mindless Self Indulgence to some extent). The world of this genre is steeped in so many pristine remixes by people like Trent Reznor or Danny Lohner that originality is anything but scarce.

Returning to the tradition of five-letter album titles, the last one being WWIII, Blitz has a worthy name as even its intro sounds forcefully chaotic. Beginning with “(symbol)”, which is understood to be the symbol for Uranus though could just be mistaken for corny wordplay, the opening track proves industrial is not well known for lyrical depth but instead for beats and monstrous distortion (not to mention acid trips on occasion). Shortly following, “Bait and Switch” takes you to a goth club while there’s a Peter Gabriel on drugs revival-of-sorts that’s going on throughout “Davai”. Stir this all in with a running theme of deathly disco and a Human League cover, you get Blitz in the strictest sense.

Songs like the more industrial lean in “Never Say Never” or the semi-title track “Potz Blitz!” (Rammstein nod?), they tend to bring the more mainstream side of KMFDM about but not without a little flair. “Potz Blitz!” would be a great single in, say, 2050, as the sound brings to memory cave dances, a heavy-set Laurence Fishburne, and lots of green a la The Matrix: Reloaded — except with more guitar. “People of the Lie” comes off slightly With Teeth-esque meshed with Dido, so it’s plain to see the pattern of man meets machine only done sexily.

With Blitz, you get the best full-length work from KMFDM probably since WWIII (this obviously excludes the multitude of EPs), though some will argue the solo work of Skold himself as being superior. KMFDM brings to the table of ’09 a more danceable album with essence of Armageddon woven betwixt the loops. It’s not by any means a classic recording, but seeing as how this outfit is still remaining true to the roots of its respective genre, there are hardly any complaints.

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