A twisted industrial nightmare you’ll want to dance and riot to.
Amnesia Scanner are a Finnish duo who spent their first few years as an anonymous act taking club music, smashing it together with some of the most aggressive nu-metal and beats and letting the chaos run riot. Now no longer in hiding, Amnesia Scanner’s follow up to their 2018 debut continues their apocalypse club marathon. This time around it is less about razor-sharp taut zombie anthems and more about feeling the oppression of it all.
The transition is noticeable in the way how the ten tracks of the album are constructed. Title track ‘Tearless’ has vocalist Lalita’s distorted groans ripped into their own synth line over kaleidoscopic electric guitar grinds. The beats are crunchy but never bright – they feel like someone has been pulverising each atom of the melody into submission. That is one of the best reasons that Amnesia Scanner works as a sound – it is harsh, unapologetic and raging. Whereas their debut ‘Another Life’ carried that with some insanely catchy riffs that crumbled in on themselves, ‘Tearless’ plays with funeral chords.
‘Aca’ sways between two chords like a funeral organ as Lalita’s voice vocodes over the top like a Darkwave version of 2001’s HAL. It is full of doom and refuses to let you escape it. ‘Flat’ features Code Orange on vocals and here the music is scattered around to sound chaotic and outside of the usual bounds of rhythm and melody. It can be difficult to find a root in on first listen but give it time and the chaos beckons. For fans of the debut ‘Trouble’, ‘Too Late’ and ‘Going’ all hark back to the more melodic times of the duo. The last of that trio features LYZZA in what probably the standout single of the album… if you could ever class any of these songs as single material. I adore how the vocals are manipulated into melodic riffs and are barely recognisable.
Initially, on the first couple of listens, I enjoyed the album but found it to not be as immediate as ‘Another Life’. This is all down to tone and mood but what I didn’t expect was how they both go hand in hand. If I want to party at the apocalypse, I go to ‘Another Life’. If I need to wallow in the futility of it all, that is where ‘Tearless’ comes into its own. So much of the album feels lethargic and sludgy that I needed to feel like that to really have the album hit me. So if some listeners and fans of the original find that ‘Tearless’ doesn’t quite click in the same manner, maybe wait until you’re having a crappy day too and you’ll be able to dig deeper with it. If we are going to have a dark, purging party at the end of the world – Amnesia Scanner has your soundtrack covered.
Recommended track: Tearless
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