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- Observatory by The Haxan Cloak
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This originally appeared on cassette but thankfully has been given the wax treatment in an edition of just 200 copies. Whoa!!!! This is well bangin'! Steaming straight ahead with booming industrial beats and backwards melodies weaving around the solid drum hits, it's more akin to techno than the post black metal I somehow expected. The track just keeps on building with superb momentum until the synth refrain eventually emerges and transforms the dark industrial mood into something altogether more psychedelic and trance inducing in the best possible way. A swift pick up of the stylus from the run-out groove and back to the start reveals layers that seemed to be hidden first time round, although it does rely a lot on repetition (very German influenced) there really is a lot going on here. It makes me feel like I've boarded a merry-go round and then stepped off with my head spinning and entering some sort of shamanic ritual. 'Hounfour (Temple)' is equally as worthy a ride with siren like synth pulses building and retreating to reveal a magical, almost euphoric electronica tune complete with sparkling and uplifting melodies pushing down the gloom of the blackened bassline. A light smattering of electronic bleeps and the throbbing bass could almost have been in debt to the forthcoming Zomby album on 4AD although these elements are far more understated on this occasion. Both sides of the record really made my day, I hope they do the same for you. Love the ultra mysterious image on the sleeve too. Grab one while you can. Check an audio clip here http://www.aurora-b.com/band_pages/HAXAN_CLOAK_ABX053
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