Album: Death in Vegas

Satan's Circus, DRONE
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The Independent Culture

With several tracks titled in German, and one called "Sons of Rother", it doesn't take a genius to figure that this is Death in Vegas's Krautrock album - a surmise immediately confirmed by the pretty synth layerings of "Ein Fur Die Damen", which do resemble the solo work of the Neu! founder Michael Rother. "Zugaga", which follows, is clearly aiming for the sinister majesty of "Trans-Europe Express" - but only achieves something more on the scale of the Swanage Steam Railway - while the chugging guitars of "Sons of Rother" do indeed effect the mantra-like manner of Neu!'s hypnotic motorik grooves. Elsewhere, heavy dub basslines pull "Heil Xanex" and "Black Lead" closer to PiL's Metal Box, even to Massive Attack, but it's a fair old plod, overall. One of the defining characteristics of Krautrock, and of the new-wave "Industrial" scene that it helped to inspire, was the sense of risk that brought such excitement to the genre's most notable creations. Sadly, that's entirely lacking in these stiflin

With several tracks titled in German, and one called "Sons of Rother", it doesn't take a genius to figure that this is Death in Vegas's Krautrock album - a surmise immediately confirmed by the pretty synth layerings of "Ein Fur Die Damen", which do resemble the solo work of the Neu! founder Michael Rother. "Zugaga", which follows, is clearly aiming for the sinister majesty of "Trans-Europe Express" - but only achieves something more on the scale of the Swanage Steam Railway - while the chugging guitars of "Sons of Rother" do indeed effect the mantra-like manner of Neu!'s hypnotic motorik grooves. Elsewhere, heavy dub basslines pull "Heil Xanex" and "Black Lead" closer to PiL's Metal Box, even to Massive Attack, but it's a fair old plod, overall. One of the defining characteristics of Krautrock, and of the new-wave "Industrial" scene that it helped to inspire, was the sense of risk that brought such excitement to the genre's most notable creations. Sadly, that's entirely lacking in these stiflingly polite, albeit sometimes pretty, pieces. There's never a suggestion on Satan's Circus that you might visit virgin sonic territory, or wind up somewhere you least expected. Which renders the whole exercise a bit pointless.

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