Sobaki Tabaka – XX-XXIV

Rating: 2.5/5
Distributor/label: Souyz
Released: 2018
Buy Album [URL]: https://sobakitabaka.bandcamp.com/album/xx-xxiv
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/Sobaki.Tabaka/


Band line-up:

Russian side: Rob Onion, Aleksey Mostiev, Andrey Turin, Roman Sukov

Europe side: Rob Onion, Aleksey Mostiev, Sergey “Ulik” Ulyanov, Patrick “Pud” Pidoux

Tracklisting:

1. khost – The New Body
2. Alan Dubin – Chujie
3. Oddateee – Hui Bez Hleba
4. JOHN 3:16 – Greh, Bogatstvo, Lyubov’ I Azart
5. BKGD Audio – Chujie
6. GSDahlquist – Beside You
7. Gnaw Their Tongues – The New Body
8. Maspin – Dosasivaya Ledenec Jizni
9. Styxian Industries – V Tele Hrista
10. Headscan – The New Body
11. end.user – Chujie
12. Angela Martyr – Angel Moi
13. Roman Urodovskikh – Golova
14. BKGD Audio – Morning In The Subway
15. Guvibosch – Live In Me
16. JOHN 3:16 – I Refuse
17. dave phillips – let me breathe you in (live in me remix)
18. Convulsif – Absolutnoe NET
19. The Austrasian Goat – Dosasivaya Ledenec Jizni
20. Christian Garcia-Gaucher – Live In Me
21. Cosmic Ground – Venki Zabvenyia
22. KERNAL – Trees, Shade, Curves
23. Swarm Intelligence – V Tele Hrista
24. Philippe Petit – Yatchita Yu Knigu Parouski
25. Terminal Sound System – Venki Zabveniya
26. Yantra Mandir – Trees shade curves

Review:

Sobaki Tabaka have been leading Russian industrial musicians for over 20 years, and their latest work ‘XX-XXIV’ is a tribute to their legacy that will be released on November 16th. The CD is a one of a kind from a band that always has and probably always will push the boundaries of their genre. The songs on the compilation album feature a number of styles, from looming spacious atmospheres to brutal, downtuned heavy metal guitars and programmed drum beats. The number and quality of the contributors on the release will satisfy any industrial fan.

For the most part, the music on this LP would make great background music in a dark kind of party. Not the sort where everyone is having fun, but rather the kind where everyone is a little bit scared of each other. The chord progressions are sinister, yet hypnotic and are great for losing yourself to. The drums are similarly often spellbinding due to their repetitive, dance-like yet not too aggressive nature. Other times, more frantic percussion gets one pumping. The ‘bipolar’ music also is perfectly fine as backing music as you work on your homework or an assignment from your boss. However, you should be warned that the musicians may subconsciously take your project off into a somewhat surreal area. That’s fine if you’re an artist, but it wouldn’t be appropriate if you work in finance, for example.

There is often a certain black metal charisma to the ‘singer’s’ tortured yet energetic screams, but the music is often so basic and sometimes borderline cacophonous it’s hard to appreciate as something to listen to purely for fun. It’s at times so repetitive that even when there are the most everyday of note changes, one often feels a certain sense of relief, and not one to be treasured. All that would be needed in such pieces would be a little more melody or even just one more tone. However, sometimes the minimalism is done rather well. For whatever the reason it could be, perhaps because the dynamics are creatively executed, or because the timing is without fault, hearing one note for ages then finally hearing another creates a weird satisfaction. That’s not easy to pull off.

In conclusion, this is no hardcore super prog where time signatures get changed every bar. In fact, it’s the kind of stuff where nothing significant can change for minutes at a time. This music is certainly not for those with a closed mind. In fact, for many it would be torture. However, the little riffs and tunes that are heard, are actually skilfully produced and there is never anything wrong with them on an aesthetic level. Again, there just needs to be more of them. It may have been nice if the pieces built up more to enhance the whole journey vibe the music occasionally gives off but still, the listener is put into a strange, mysterious world where everything is eerie and fresh.

Review by Simon Wiedemann
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