EARTH LOOP RECALL - PRESS ARCHIVE
Now this is what classic industrial music is made of. Machine gun artillery fed guitars, at times almost riffing like Sabbath, Reznor style synth builds, vocals that go from hell to mainline depression, and great songs that blend subtle with the overwhelming. It is fitting this band is on Warp Factory from the UK, a label which has been at the forefront of excellent electronic music for a couple of years at least now. The songs are what make this a great album; beginning with "Reconnect" the band takes you through stages of a complete mental and physical breakdown. Right off the bat, you're so fuckin' high in the first number you're never coming down, as vocalist Glen Mclees tells you plainly with a well placed "Fuck You!" Cut two is also killer keeping together with "Mesh" in fine darkwave tradition. ELR also gets really deep in electronica with "Petra Lena", sounding very layered and emocore as the song shifts around a slightly goth influence. What follows though, is straight up a hit single, "Please Stop Hurting Me". It too is about partying hard to numb oneself and the inevitable comedown that comes, but the song has three or four distinct parts that take it beyond the simple " dark pop" formula and more in the line of what vintage Pink Floyd would do if they were an industrial band. Use of loops and samples is prominent throughout Compulsion, part of the credit has to go to primary keyboardist Joanna Quail, who has a keen sense of arpeggio and ambience. The beauty of the band's craftiness as a whole is well painted accross the black skies of the music's sonic identity. Overall, pieces like "Let Yourself" explore the art of polyphonic texturing to the max, while retaining a solid rock n roll sans funk groove. Another good example of how the band can mix dance, depth and It takes time, and a good bit of talent, to get songs like these to come accross neither too falsified or simply good sequences. I hand that prize over to the lyrics and vocals, they present an almost unescapable darkness, but it's in a sly night at the pub kinda way. If this band can pull off the same feel live, and retain the pure drive of these songs, they will maintain their mantle in the hall of the greats.
(Stuart A Hamilton, MetalUK)
Whilst one hates to state the obvious, sometimes you just can't help yourself. So here goes. If you're tired of waiting for Trent Reznor to return to the big beat industrial noise he achieved most of his success with, then Earth Loop Recall is the place to be.
But don't panic, for they are much more than a Nine Inch Nails tribute band. Otherwise, I'd be having a very dull time. Earth Loop Recall add in enough twists and turns of their own, mixing in their industrial vibes with nods to the alt rock world of My Bloody Valentine, with slabs of feedback battling against the computer.
"Compulsion" is an excellent release, standing proud amongst its antecedents, able to fight amongst the big boys. It's hard to be different in a genre hidebound by its comparatively restrictive rules, but Earth Bound Recall manage this. They've taken the beats of NIN, melded in the aforementioned feedback, tied it in to the rage of punk, and unleashed a sheer slab of fury. Opening track "Reconnect" is one of the more brutal offerings, revelling in its anti-sound, but it's the deep and dubby "Petra Lena" that keeps calling me back for more.
If you're wondering why this belongs within the confines of MetalUK, then the answer to your question is guitars. Layers and layer and layers of guitars, blasting out of the speakers, washing you away in a torrent of astonishing noise. In a just world, "Please Stop Hurting Me" would be the number one record du jour, one of many lovelorn numbers, and the least disguised one. Until the bile and venom of the lyrics click in! Essential.
From deep in the dungeons of London, cyber-freaks Earth Loop Recall conjure up a head-clanging dose of drug-dustrial that solders the bassy throb and bed of nails percussion of early SK. Puppy with the sheet-metal goth-slam guitars of “Exile”-era Chemlab, or mebbe Razed in Black. Roll in a few black clouds of depression, and wham bam, thank you Mr. X man- state-of-the-art suicide disco. Unlike a lot o’ the post-NIN electro-metal crowd, ELR don’t particularly sound like video game muzak, which means they might even appeal to some o’ the swankier ROCK fans among us. Me? It kinda reminds me of hot goth chicks in ripped fishnets trapped in go-go cages and screaming, but then I remember that I’m not supposed to say stuff like that out loud anymore. Anyway, if you like cutting yrself with razors, or are just currently banging a chick that does, then you’ll probably wanna add this ‘un to yr blood-stained i-Pod.
Quartet Earth Loop Recall, a Wasp Factory's pride is releasing their album this month. Press release we've received (and that I read only after been listening three times to the CD) reffers several times to NIN style and that's exactly the first band I related their music to. So, at least now we have a comparison, but... We are not talking about NIN clones, but rather about a band that gathered many stiles like crossover, industrial and electronic, which makes them suitable to metal scene as well as the darkwave/industrial nights. Energy to the max without brutality, songs constructed and studied in the smallest details...
Earth Loop Recall seems not only be able to make a good album, but also a great live show. While waiting for their performance in your town, drink few Red Bulls to speed you up, then put this CD in and play it loud (tested)!
Additional compliments go to the CD cover. One of the best I've seen lately.
(Nat Carsley, Logo)
Unsettling in its sheer enormity yet thoroughly enthralling from start to finish, ‘Compulsion’ is a towering inferno of electro-fused rock that instantly moves Earth Loop Recall into Industrial’s top circle. Not content with merely tethering carefully-scripted techno-surges to the genre’s relentlessly caustic riffage, there’s teeth-clenched bile deep at work here that rips pages from ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’ and slashes that deep punk heritage through its very heart. It’s big, sweating electro dynamite that somehow manipulates industrial rock into something strangely feral and gleefully degenerate. Amazing stuff that’ll leave you panting for breath.
(Uncle Nemesis, Starvox)
The Wasp Factory label’s very own sound-sculptors release their much-anticipated debut album - and you know what? It’s a bit of a good ‘un.
Now, when I describe Earth Loop Recall as ‘sound sculptors’, I’m not indulging in typical reviewer-hyperbole (at least, not *this* time). This band doesn’t so much make music, as carve songs out of blocks of raw sound. Compulsion is packed with dense, intense, towering slabs of guitar-fuelled contemporary rock noise. It’s an exhilarating racket, but be warned: there’s no holding back here. Sit and listen to this album in one go, and it’ll leave you drained and breathless afterwards. Earth Loop Recall have a very simple aim: to take the listener on a wide-eyed, white knuckle ride...and someone’s disconnected the brakes.
The name of My Bloody Valentine is often dropped as a handy comparison when Earth Loop Recall are being described, and there’s certainly an element of MBV’s relentless, insistent, overwhelming rush of sound in ELR’s own music. You could, perhaps, also namecheck Sonic Youth, in their early, experimental period, before they recorded ‘Goo’ and went all bubblegum-punk on us. I’ve seen Nine Inch Nails mentioned as another point of comparison, although I’m not entirely convinced by this one. Sure, there’s certainly the odd hint of NIN-ness in the Earth Loop Recall noise (particularly ‘Reconnect’, which adventurous DJs could probably mix quite effectively with ‘Head Like A Hole’) but in truth ELR really don’t touch base with any of the usual goth/industrial influences. They’re coming from a different place: the out-there end of the post-punk scene, when to be ‘alternative’ meant something more than just recycled Beatles riffs and cartoon belligerence. Earth Loop Recall - last of the true alternative bands? Or part of a gathering tide of indie-with-attitude? Probably a bit of both.
The Earth Loop Recall sound is firmly based around The Mighty Electric Guitar. There are layers and layers and layers of guitar here, racked up and up over weirdly effective electronic atmospheres and programmed rhythms which swing along with such verve you’d hardly believe it’s all done by machinery. Check out ‘Peta Lena’ for a confident, broad-brush mash-up of programming and laminated guitars, or ‘Please Stop Hurting Me’, with its effortless command of dynamics. One minute it’s a slight little thing, a wistful ballad of lost love, then suddenly it leaps up and bites you like a dog, and the lyrics get quite venomously sardonic: ‘You don’t mix well with alcohol/You don’t mix well with chemicals...’ I would also recommend to your attention the weirdly groovy ‘Optimism Creeping In’, with that odd little guitar-jangle, like John McGeogh just happened to be strolling past the studio at the crucial moment, and then that big, bad, rev-up of a chorus, with the electronic rhythm, down in the mix, subtly but relentlessly nudging everything along. It’s all so neatly put together - this is certainly a band who know their music inside and out. Right at the end, ‘Remember Me’ trips you up, for it’s a neat little spooky-orchestral instrumental, an unexpected moment of come-down after the roaring and clamouring that preceded it.
This is a tremendously assured debut, and, with ‘nuff respect to the other acts on Wasp Factory’s roster, top quality artists all, possibly the most fully-realised, the most *complete* release the label has ever put out. In short - it’s damn fine stuff.
Now all you need to do is go out and buy it.
(Keith Elcombe, Hard Wired)
Despite having a cool name, and a cool album cover, ELR have delivered a bloody good album here. Sitting firmly in the ‘Industrial’ camp, this is UK Industrial at it’s best – male vocals front the band while distorted guitars and sequencers provide the musical canvas. I can safely say that there is no EBM styled tracks on this album – it’s Industrial to the core, and could prove to be the breath of fresh air Industrial-heads have been after for a long time. This album oozes passion and dedication. The emotion behind the vocals is all too clear, and you are left in no doubt that a lot of thought has gone into this release. But before I bang on anymore about ELR, who do they sound like? While it’s unfair to try and label the band, for those who have not experienced the ELR sound, I feel that this is important. I caught traces of (early) NIN, Radiohead, Mesh and even a bit of PWEI.
Back to the review, and there are some blinding tracks on here – ‘Please Stop Hurting Me’ combines a melodic intro, with a soundscape that can best be described as driving rage and passion coming in after a few seconds. This is great stuff, and sure to fill a dance floor near you soon. For a tune that gets in your head and stays there, look no further than ‘Petra Lena’, a thought provoking number that has a rhythm that is so hard to shake out of your mind. But it’s not all angst and guitars – ‘Slowly Going Under’ is a much slower number (the kind of track that would be at home on the soundtrack for ‘The Crow’) and shows off the talent on offer here from the band. All of the vocal scales are given a workout here with no loss of musical ability. Stunning! But if you’re out to judge sheer musicianship, then look no further than the instrumental ‘Wake Up Shaking’ – weighing in at just over 5 minutes, this track showcases the musical talent on offer here nicely. The best track on the album has to be ‘Optimism Creeping In’ – a sheer powerhouse of a track with rampaging drum loops and grinding guitars. You’ll wreck/mosh yourself silly to this one! Sound production on the album cannot be faulted. Once again, time and commitment paying off by the bucket load here. I cannot recommend this album enough – this is THE new face of the UK Industrial scene, and if ELR can keep this up, they will be the new benchmark by which others are judged! Buy it, play it, and play it loud!!
(Jonny EOL, Eraser Online) Pity for Monsters II, The Water Rats, Kings Cross, 27th Feb 2004 The show I saw at the Garage's scout hut last July was merely a sampler of what they had to offer. Their use of a fierce electronic backbone, yearning vox and a combination of different guitar styles demanded a soundsystem capable of handling such a complex sound, and the Water Rats seemed at least up to the job. This was also notable as the first ELR show in London since the release of their debut album 'Compulsion', with the word going round before their show that this might be something very special indeed.
And it was. The rigid synthetic rhythms provided the base, the framework which was so elegantly filled out with some of the most inspired guitar work I've heard for some time, topped off by Ben McKees vocals, which somehow managed to climb over the awesome wall of sound to lead their band through their short but highly effective set, each successive song proving to be more climatic than the last. Their attendant knob-twiddler picked up a bass for the finale, a huge, expansive song that brought their set to a spectacular close, the resultant cheering proving to be the only thing capable of out-doing the ELR machine in the intensity stakes. I might have cheered more myself, but, dear reader, I was more intent on getting down to the Wasp Factory stall and bagging one of their CDs.
(Uncle Nemesis, Starvox) Pity for Monsters II, The Water Rats, Kings Cross, 27th Feb 2004 Earth Loop Recall are on a roll at the moment. Their album, ‘Compulsion’, has picked up good reviews everywhere from indie zines to metal mags (I even took it upon myself to award the band the StarVox seal of approval), and their gigs always generate a stir. There’s a feeling in the air that this is a band teetering on the brink of...well, I won’t make any grand predictions and say ‘superstardom’, but certainly there’s a sense that to watch Earth Loop Recall in action is to witness something special unfolding before our very eyes. They fire up ‘Optimism Creeping In’, and their sound roars and swirls around the venue like a jet plane running up its engines for take-off. It’s such a big, big sound you can almost feel the walls bulging under sheer sonic pressure - and yet it’s not just a formless noise. Earth Loop Recall’s secret weapon is their ability to create detail and space in amongst the guitar-fuelled roar. There are distinct keyboard lines and odd little rhythms winding their way around the densely-packed decibels; bespoke features of the band’s musical landscape which you can pick up on and marvel at, even as the sheer power of the sound is pinning you to the back wall of the venue. Ben hunches over the mic like Johnny Rotten’s better-dressed brother and rips out the lyrics like his soul’s being roasted over a low flame, while the band lurch and sway and riff around him. But it’s not at all an angst-by-numbers show. On the contrary, there are grins and quips between (and occasionally during) the songs. Earth Loop Recall know how to mix their vitriol with fun. There are shout-outs to friends and aquaintances - ‘Reconnect’ is dedicated to Mick Mercer, who, alas, is unable to be with us tonight. Come to think of it, Mick has been unable to be with us for about the last eight years. But no matter: for those of us who still connect, this feels good. This feels like something new is happening. Something new is oozing up from the murky swamps of the underground, and Earth Loop Recall are the foremost tentacle of the monster.
The interesting thing is - if I might digress for a moment - that it looks uncannily like Earth Loop Recall are on a collision course with the zeitgeist. The London club circuit is steadily filling up with nights which tap into the dark, left-field areas of post-punk independent music. There’s The Dark Stuff in Camden, Alan McGee’s Death Disco in Notting Hill, and - soon - Devilish Presley’s own excursion into the darker side, New Dark Age. Even Dead And Buried, London’s deathrock club, could be said to occupy the crossover ground. It’s as if the cliches and insularity and blind alleys of the latter-day goth scene are being cast aside: all of a sudden, nobody’s too bothered about haircuts or clothes, nobody cares about the latest standard-issue EBM floor-filler. The important factor is intense, creative, out-there music, which has the courage to stare into the heart of darkness and give it a sardonic wink. And that, of course, is exactly where Earth Loop Recall come in. Now, I’m not going to predict that a whole new movement (post-goth post-punk?) is going to start up - in fact, I rather hope that’s not the way it goes. But if there’s a new focus on the music, and less on spurious ‘scene’ issues, and if everything starts crossing over...well, I reckon the future is going to be a cool place to be. If it happens, remember where you read it first. If it doesn’t happen - forget I mentioned it!