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The Monolith Deathcult - Versus 1

The Monolith Deathcult
Versus 1
by Tim Bolitho-Jones at 20 July 2017, 4:31 AM

VERSUS 1 might be the first album ever submitted to this site where one of the vocalists is a malfunctioning television. This is the first of a three-part project by THE MONOLITH DEATHCULT and it is utterly bizarre. The introductory track “Hal Sinden’s Radio Dramas” sounds like someone drinking beer and channel surfing past weird speeches before the record starts properly. But by the time “The Furious Gods” begins, these out-of-context samples are still going and continue throughout the rest of the album. This gives the whole thing a strangely unsettling atmosphere, as if JAMES WOODS’ TV from the movie “Videodrome” decided to form an Industrial Metal band. There are shades of MARILYN MANSON here, although there are dashes of humour to be found, the brief snippet of the MONTY PYTHON theme in the first song suggesting they’re not taking themselves entirely seriously. It goes to some dark places as well, the stomping “Uchronian March Of The Deathcults” feeling like the soundtrack to a fascistic alien rally.

Die Glocke” and “Seven Months Of Mysticum” meanwhile are punishing walls of sound reminiscent of MINISTRY at their most unhinged. They are utterly furious blasts of dense noise as heavy as collapsing suns, but “This Inhuman Place Makes Human Monsters” is surprisingly fun. It’s no less intense, but it takes the lead riff from MACHINE HEAD’sOld” and turns it into a churning Death Metal maelstrom that’s remarkably upbeat. In direct contrast “From The Stalinic Perspective” is a slower and morose addition to the track listing. In fact it’s so methodical and gloomy that it only needs a few more references to the casual malevolence of the deep ocean to become an AHAB song. It’s gloomy and atmospheric, but unfortunately it’s too long and becomes boring before it finishes. This drab finale aside though, “Versus 1” is an exhilarating forty seven minutes. It has a madcap energy running through it and manages to be reminiscent of STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, MINISTRY and CANNIBAL CORPSE all at the same time. That television too man, damn…

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 8
Production: 8
Memorability: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Hal Sinden’s Radio Dramas
2. The Furious Gods
3. Die Glocke
4. Seven Months Of Mysticum
5. Uchronian March Of The Deathcults
6. This Inhuman Place Makes Human Monsters
7. From The Stalinic Perspective
Michael Dekker – Guitars, Vocals, Chanter, Percussion, Samples
Carsten Altena – Guitars, Samples, Percussion
Robin Kok – Vocals, Bass, Samples
Record Label: Hammerheart Records


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Edited 20 September 2021

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