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TOPIC: Industrial Rock

Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2841

  • dreddup
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One of my favorite music genres. You really need to be into it to know what goes there and what doesn't. It's a mess nowdays partly because of the critics include every more electronic based nu-metal bend into it. So many people include genres like NDH (Neue Deutsche Hrte), American coldwave (not to be mixed with French cold wave 80s noir pop genre), groove metal or industrial metal into industrial rock but they are simply not a part of the ideology, iconography and aesthetics of this genre. Industrial rock has this guitar driven punk attitude mixed with apocalyptic and aggressive electronics. It's sometimes dark and noisy and sometimes catchy and dance driven . Be very careful about including bands like Rammstein, Fear Factory, Static-X, Oomph!, Deathstars etc....into industrial rock or industrial in general. Though superficially abrasive and often aggressive, industrial rock is generally more listener-friendly than traditional industrial. Moreover, industrial music has always been alternative and could not be very popular in the mainstream world. There are 3 different styles of industrial rock. Plain industrial rock that has a well-balanced rock/electronic elegance, the more electronic driven industrial rock (where synths try to imitate guitar riffs and vocals go mostly into deep distortion) and guitar driven industrial rock where electronic sounds fill the background. Also - fans of this kind of music are called rivetheads.

Here's my little short genre presentation if you want to go into the history:

70s SCENE

It all started in late 70s. Industrial culture was born in 1975. and had "un-music" ideology playing on everything that provided live noise. From tape experiments to weird noise making simply hiting everything that makes sound on stage. It wanted to make audience unlearn the music laws and present alternative solutions to instruments and music making. The other fraction were synth-based electronic bands that started to appear like mushrooms everywhere. It was clear that new genres of music like synth pop, progressive synth and electronic punk we're something new and different. Two main fractions in the music scene were made - on one side live rock music, and in the other - electronic music. One didn't want to do anything with the other. Live rock musicians of the time stated that electronic music was nothing but button pressing junk, and electronic musicians of the time thought that rock music is obsolete and oldschool. In the end of 70s, after new wave and synth punk were introduced to wider audiences, there was a small fraction of bands aware of stupidity from dividing music into this and that. These bands were the pioneers of industrial rock music and wanted to experiment with both fractions at the same time. They loved guitar riffs but also enjoyed good electronic beats and synthesized solutions off the no-wave scene. The first few I can say that have that industrial rock vibe in some of their songs were the bands like Chrome, Tubeway Army, Suicide, SPK, Einsturzende Neubauten, Pere Ubu, Fad Gadget and Cabaret Voltaire. They were the 70s guru guys responsible for loud machine driven rhythm and punk driven riffs. Their performances were described as theatre from the critics of that time. Looking like abandoned vultures from post-apocalyptic movies, they brought cyberpunk aesthetics to punk fashion of the time.

80s SCENE

The second wave emerged in the early 80s, bands like Swans, Big Black, Die Krupps, My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult and Foetus. There was a lot of post-punk vibe present in their music at the time, but mid 80s nailed the genre aesthetics & sound into something completely new. Bands like Ministry & The Young Gods were the first ones to break the rules and make the new genre - industrial rock genre. In that time, there was a lot of clones of these bands. In USA, Ministry had a lot of side-projects and electronic band-friends that switched their sound to industrial rock. The Young Gods were one of the first in Europe to present guitar sampling tricks and loud beating drums. The late 80s included bands like Revolting Cocks, KMFDM, Chemlab, Stabbing Westward, Godflesh, Treponem Pal, Orifice, 16 Volt, Lard... it was more aggressive and "beat against riff" driven with less experimentation. Performances of the time included a lot of video projections, flame throwers and loud metallic barrels present on stage as their gadgets & instruments. It was noted that the guys from SPK played a show in mid 80s which left one of the members with broken arms because they were fighting themselves with baseball bats on-stage.

90s SCENE & THE GOLDEN ERA OF THE GENRE

The prime time of industrial rock took place between 1988 and 1996. All of the cult names were born in early 90s. Bands like: Bile, Sleeping Dogs Wake, Diatribe, Nine Inch Nails, Skrew, Morlocks, Prick, Pitchshifter, Pigface, Gravity Kills, Hate Dept, Marilyn Manson, Feindflug, Filter, Acumen Nation, Rob Zombie, Circle of Dust.... and also, some of the old bands incorporated industrial rock elements in their mid 90s albums, bands like Killing Joke, David Bowie, Gary Numan, Laibach, Morgoth, Pailhead, Front Line Assembly, Skinny Puppy, The Prodigy, Skunk Anansie, Garbage, Steril, Mortiis.... It was way more guitar driven with fat production. Also, video projections were now made live with VJs and live dancers were incorporated. Punk stage personas were now replaced with a mixture of horror/war imagery, nuclear post-apocalyptic stuff and S&m accessories. Golden era of industrial rock was also it's closing era, 1994 - 1997. All the albums from that period are praised by the critics and loved by the fans. After 1996. closed-off it was clear that nu-metal and groove metal were the next big thing in USA, also NDH was coined by Megaherz in Germany in early 90s and lifted to mainstream by Rammstein later in 1997 and Atari Teenage Riot introduced digital hardcore genre. Industrial rock bands went back to underground or disbanded. A lot of bands changed their industrial rock sound to fit some modern stuff changing it to industrial metal (Ministry, I will never forgive you for this shit) or nu-metal, big beat, plain disco-metal .... or just went back to plain electronics (like Laibach and Skinny Puppy did). The genre was finished in mainstream media also, only survivors were Marilyn Manson and Nine Inch Nails who later embraced the genre-banding techniques and went flirting with modern pop and 80s electronics. Notable industrial rock bands of the late 90s closing era are: Decree, Mindless Self Indulgence, Society Burning, Sister Machine Gun, God Lives Underwater, Kidneythieves, Flesh Field, Overseer, Christ Analogue, Hanzel Und Gretyl, Blue Stahli, Agressiva 69.....

00s SCENE

Early 2000s, brought cheaper computer software in the game and with it brought a lot of home-based industrial rock projects and helped some underground bands record their stuff without a studio experience kind of recording. There was this easy way to do stuff that was once expensive. Studios became obsolete for this music genre. So some of the new bands emerged, following an evolution in genre sound and going more into modern electronics - bands like: Cyanotic, Psycho Charger, Dope Stars Inc, Morlocks, Rabbit Junk, Author & Punisher... emerged in early and mid 00s. They've all added modern beat making and a lot of electronic glitch-based sounds and noises.

10s SCENE

10s brought more dance driven industrial rock sound and more harsh guitar sound. Bands from that era include: Be My Enemy, Unit 187, Dexy Corp, Baxter Lilly, Hardwire, Dope, Ptyl, Angelspit... It went into genre mixing stuff. A lot of dubstep was incorporated, factory machine sounds and 80s driven back fills. The latest installment of industrial rock driven bands include two different fractions. One fraction that went and embraced pop and commercial aesthetics into their sound mixing everything into the genre - from plain pop, emo, nu-metal, drum'n'bass, dubstep and glitchcore eventually losing it's identity and having industrial rock only as the base sound and backround skeleton - and the other fraction of bands that went back into retro-80s driven industrial rock, synth punk and ebm-noir pop guitar driven noise. The representatives of the first fraction are: Celldweller, Cold Divide, Hadouken!, The Qemists, Horskh, Hounds, The Glitch Mob.... The other fraction has more oldschool vibe: 3Teeth, Youth Code, Baal, Ho99o9, High-Functioning Flesh, Ulterior, Waste Incorporated, Drev, A Place To Bury Strangers (noise rock driven but filled with industrial rock elements). There are some new bands every day and I think there will be a mass revival of the genre in years to come.

YUGOSLAVIAN & SERBIAN SCENE

As for the Yugoslavian and Serbian scene. It goes something like this through years:

Back in the 80s there were bands that incorporated some industrial rock in their sound like: Borghesia, Laibach, SCH. Imitacija Zivota, No Passaran, O Kult, Abbildungen Variete.... Early 90s brought: VIVIsect, Pure, Transmisia, Katarza, Overdose, Rope... Late 90s brought: dreDDup, Zexon 5, Retro Mind, Urgh! (had one industrial rock based album), some of Supernaut stuff, some of Johanbeen stuff.... Early 2000s were introduced by: Klopka za Pionira, CutNPaste, S.O.K., KOH, Kleimor... Latest bands include: f.O.F, Monolith, Crna Barbi, Mined Dust, Neurotech, Pornhouse, some of Figurative Theatre stuff, Kinjal, Transeen, f.O.F, some of Riot 87 stuff. some of Kult of Red Pyramid stuff....

p.s.
I hope you liked the text :)
"If something is actual, there's really no need to believe in it. You only have to believe something if it isn't true, because if it were, belief wouldn't be necessary."
Last Edit: 2 years 3 months ago by dreddup.
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Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2842

Awesome rundown of a musical genre! :lol:
The sheer number of name drops might be a bit overwhelming but you won't hear me complain. Now I have a rich field of bands to check out :evil:
I won't pretend to understand the differences between various industrial genres because I've always seen industrial as a type of sound, a "vibe", that can be applied to very different kinds of music so I usually judge bands and even songs on a case by case basis. I have this folder on my computer that a friend gave me close to 15 years ago that has almost a hundred songs ranging from aggrotech to dark psy to shit I wouldn't know how to classify even if my life depended on it, but is mostly industrial (or at least stuff my friend considers industrial). Some of the songs on there are so different from each other that I have a hard time believing they are from the same family of music let alone the same genre. For example, in my mind, Rob Zombie and NIN are distinctly different from each other but they are in a totally different solar system when compared to some of the stuff on there that sound like you are listening to the production line of a pots and pans factory. So I usually just call something "industrial-y" in one way or another and don't go so far as to define it as industrial metal or industrial rock or whatever :P
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Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2843

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Well. it's really important to know that 'industrial' and 'industrial rock' are not the same genres. Industrial culture exists from 1975. with experimental noises and repetitive drum beating & monotone vocal singing and screaming. Bands like Ze'v, Throbbing Gristle, NoN and other stuff are the best example of it. They have completely different aesthetics and approach than industrial rock. It's not related at all. Pure industrial genre nowdays exists in experimental-movie driven soundtracks and really life-supporters of the genre like Wroclaw music festival and these old 70s bands. Aggrotech, Electro-industrial, EBM and other styles are also not related to these two genres at all - they are the direct descendants of 70s disco, 80s electro-pop, darkwave and 90s dance music. For instance, metalheads nowdays think that industrial is everything that has triggered drums and synthesizers in the background and that goth is everything with dance electronics and harsh distorted vocals. :D :D it's fucking silly :D
"If something is actual, there's really no need to believe in it. You only have to believe something if it isn't true, because if it were, belief wouldn't be necessary."
Last Edit: 3 years 7 months ago by dreddup.
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Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2848

I think I'm guilty of being in that group of metalheads you mentioned :blush:
It's just that metal was my genre of choice growing up and even then I knew some stuff about the genres I listened to (mostly trash and power metal, later some black metal and nu metal), but I was never a scholar.
After a while I stopped caring about genres and just listened to what I liked without bothering to classify it. That's why I tend to generalize. :P
You seen like you know your shit though :lol:
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Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2849

there's absolutely nothing wrong with not obsessing over genres and not knowing much about them... there really isn't... but maybe then you shouldn't get into a discussion about genres, no? Just sayin :P
Also, great text dreddup, you made me remember some bands I hadn't listened to in a really long time :lol:
Last Edit: 3 years 7 months ago by Demons.
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Industrial Rock 3 years 7 months ago #2852

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It's always important to know history of the genre you like, so that you don't get easily confused. Nowdays, kids take stuff for granted, they don't do research on the subject. That's why we now have gothic nights and club parties without any gothic bands on the playlist, or industrial parties without a single industrial band. It went mish-mash. Also today - you get instant bands. It's important to research and recognize the aesthetics of the genre in some other genres. I found more punk attitude and iconography in some female hiphop artists than in 90% of these new "punk" bands. If you know what I mean.
"If something is actual, there's really no need to believe in it. You only have to believe something if it isn't true, because if it were, belief wouldn't be necessary."
Last Edit: 3 years 7 months ago by dreddup.
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Industrial Rock 3 years 6 months ago #2860

Demons I didn't mean to get into a discussion about genres. Everything I've written so far should tell you that I'm ultimately not qualified to, especially about industrial. I just wanted to share my view on such things.
I agree that you should know about the history of a genre if you like being knowledgeable about such things and want to get into serious discussions about it, but music is ultimately about a song or a band speaking to you, about enjoying their music whether you know that band's music is called "neo-punk jazz fusion" (or something equally convoluted) or if you just know them as "that weird sounding band". It's like looking at a painting in a gallery... knowing the name of the artist and his whole history is valuable information and is definitively worthy of respect, but not having that knowledge won't necessarily make you appreciate the painting any less. The problem occurs when people who don't know their shit start acting like they do. That's why, whenever I talk about these kinds of things I preface my opinions with a disclaimer saying that it's how I see things personally and not necessarily how they are... Like I more or less did in my first post ;)
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Industrial Rock 3 years 6 months ago #2863

First of all @Dreddup !!!!!! I came to this platform following your link on this topic! Someone shared it in a Facebook group I hang out at :D Are you a music blogger?

Second I would agree with @KingNothing, it makes sense! It is not necessary to have all the knowledge to enjoy music, but if you wanna make music a profession or a hobby (like DJ, musician, music critics and bloggers) you better know your shit and don't spread false "information" :D
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Industrial Rock 3 years 6 months ago #2866

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@KingNothing: I agree with you. I find real problems in that, for instance, from time to time, I find people idolizing more artists whose carriers were manufactured by production companies and out of stealing other artists iconography, music or plain song-stealing. It's like these people - they just don't want to hear about the originals and artists that made it all happen. And when you point to original ones, the songs, the iconography, everything someone thought about and invented and needed to fight for it in time - these people simply don't want to hear about it all. It does not exist for them and won't acknowledge that. Back in old days industrial rock musicians invented the music genre, the style of playing, the style of singing, rhythm and iconography of everythingm aesthetics and art. Today - we have music business, record companies that don't go out and search for good artists like they used to, they go to studios and make instant packaging of everything. If you want a goth band - they have package ready for you. Find some guys, tell them what to do, make their sound, look. If you want industrial rock - it's also ready. The same thing - the sound, the image, ways of chorus singing and ways videos are made - it's the same for every fucking band. It becomes boring after some time to hear the same riffs over and over, especially when you , like i did, listened to all of that in the first place many years ago - it's just retro styles and retro music for me now. For fans who are new in this kind of music it's a bit confusing. That's why we get that elitism stuff in the first place - when some leading group of subculture fans can not recognize new approaches and reinventions of some these genres. Then we have that "true" and "not true" shit involved. I would recommend for fans of this genre to let go of some idol worshiping stuff and go and research the beginnings of the genre and also to hear some new bands with different style and the way of thinking and to try to understand the link between. Old ones have different iconographies involved, different styles of the same style and different approaches until it all became simple packaging and product. It's more interesting and emotion is not artificially manufactured. Today you have some new guys, with knowledge of the history of the genre, trying to push the boundaries further and go where others never went. And I love that. But nowdays you also have the "pre-packaged" bands. For young fans and kids who are newto this stuff - it's hard to separate the real emotional stuff and real bands from 'manufactured emotion' and corporate bands. If you know what I mean. I feel like kids were just robbed and tricked.
"If something is actual, there's really no need to believe in it. You only have to believe something if it isn't true, because if it were, belief wouldn't be necessary."
Last Edit: 3 years 6 months ago by dreddup.
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Industrial Rock 3 years 6 months ago #2867

OtherMother wrote:
It is not necessary to have all the knowledge to enjoy music, but if you wanna make music a profession or a hobby (like DJ, musician, music critics and bloggers) you better know your shit and don't spread false "information" :D
Exactly! Exactly my point ;)

I know what you mean @dreddup. I've known for a long time that pop music is like that... that it's mass produced in the same old package over and over again with only the slightest variations in the musical formula (and don't be fooled, it is basically a mathematical formula for those guys). Also that an extremely small group of the same songwriters has written every single pop hit that you might have heard on the charts. (Here's an article that touches on some of those people, most notably a guy called Max Martin: nypost.com/2015/10/04/your-favorite-song...ritten-by-these-two/) But I remember feeling so disheartened when I first noticed those same methods, that whole business plan, being used in the alternative music scene... and that's exactly the thing you are talking about :(

As for people who don't want to accept that the music they like might have been influenced and inspired by bands that came before, they are just being idiots! I mean, for me, it's like, I've never been a huge fan of some bands and musicians that are considered the granddaddies of metal or rock&roll, like Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Hendrix etc. Not that I had anything against those bands, there are songs of theirs that I like and consider classics, it's just that I didn't listen to them as religiously as most of my fellow metalheads. What you can bet your ass I did do is respect the hell out of them for being the pioneers that they were. Even if I didn't particularly like it, I gave their music a chance if for no other reason than to hear the music that inspired, shaped and ultimately formed the music of bands I do like. Finding out about metal (or any genre) through a newer, relatively young, band and not knowing the history that came before them is totally forgivable, but if you are given an opportunity to listen to those trailblazing bands and find out about the roots of your genre, just sit down, shut up and appreciate the contributions they made... even if the genre in question has changed significantly so that it's earlier days might not appeal to you.
Doing anything less is stupid and disrespectful :angry:
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