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KMFDM: (Unpronounceable/ Symbols)

Staking their claim as the AC/DC of industrial dance, KMFDM continue milking the same sound they've cultivated on their last few albums. It seems as though any innovations they might have contributed in the past were purely accidental, judging from the stubborn lack of experimentalism that's graced their latest output. To the band's credit, they still manage to wring some catchy melodies out of what is in essence extremely sparse production, but as is the case with all bands who can't progress beyond their disciples, there is much on this album that sounds too similar to their younger peers. "Mercy" could easily pass for Gravity Kills (so could "Anarchy"), while several other songs have Marilyn Manson style vocals and the by-now obligatory German lyrics. Lines such as "Shut me down/Knock me to the floor/Shoot me up/F**k me like a whore" are no longer abrasive, they're just cliched (So is the song title "Spit Sperm"- ooh, how hardcore!).

And now that that's out of the way, I'd say it's safe to admit that fans looking for progressive innovation have probably abandoned KMFDM several albums back. With that in mind, those still interested will find plenty to please themselves. As previously stated, there is nothing on (symbols) that hasn't been done before, but like AC/DC, KMFDM have a gift for rearranging the same formula in ways that, at the very least, maintain individual song distinction. There's nothing as blatantly pop as "Juke Joint Jezebel" or "Power" (or arguably anything as good), but (symbols) does have it's stunted consistency, like an old beat-up truck you just can't bring yourself to trade in; although the possibility always remains that next year's model may undermine your loyalty.

Added: January 1st 2004
Reviewer: SoT Archives
Score:
Hits: 3019
Language: english

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