CD: Crunch Pod 42 [2005]
Ltd x 1000

Seditious Minds
Enemy Within
The Rogue Pair [v.1]
A Line In The Sand
The Rogue Pair [v.2]
Seditious Minds [Terrorfakt Remix]
Enemy Within [Battle For New Orleans Mix by Caustic]
Seditious Minds [Endif.RMX]
The Rogue Pair [Manufactura Remix]

Hot on the heels of the politically charged "The Prisoner" album [read review here], Ben Arp expands his C/A/T project by adding female collaborator Kat in an engineering and live support role. Marked as another progression in the C/A/T sound, "The Rogue Pair" additionally features four exclusive remixes from Terrorfakt, Manufactura, Caustic and Endif.

The immediate and most notable differences between this and "The Prisoner" album are the marked changes in the C/A/T sound; gone are the endless socio-political samples and in is an uncompromising power noise stance. The samples are still there but they are they are used sparingly and to better effect with the music brought to the forefront for maximum impact. There is even a sense of humour in evidence on this album, particularly on the breast obsessed 'Enhancer'. Arp's music itself is denser, more aggressive and is immersed in the power noise genre like never before. Tracks such as 'Seditious Minds' and 'Enemy Within' show how Arp has enhanced and improved the C/A/T sound to produce slick aggressive power noise anthems.

The two versions of 'The Rogue Pair' show contrasting sides of Arp's work; 'v.1' is more on the noise end of the scale while 'v.2' has more rhythmic trance-like quality. Both are equally powerful but 'v.2' also shows a dark desperate undercurrent through its choice of samples. Following in the footsteps of 'The Rogue Pair [v.1]' are 'Enhancer', 'A Line in the Sand' and 'Severed'. More in line with the rhythmic qualities of 'The Rogue Pair [v.2]' are Art of Noise taunting 'Liability'.

The exclusive remixes included on the album push the sound just a bit further, each remixer turning the power of their respective tracks up another notch. Terrorfakt's remix of 'Seditious Minds' hammering beat builds into distortion enhanced industrial overload but is not that dissimilar from the original, which was a strong track in the first place. Endif take the same track and turn it into a relentless metallic power noise collision. Caustic take 'Enemy Within' and make a powerful adrenalin fuelled statement on the situation in New Orleans by using some well chosen samples from TV coverage and press conferences. Manufactura produce an unrelenting remix of the title track that is laced with crackling distortion and fast pounding beats, the only respite being an ambient interlude before the track self-destructs.

Hard, powerful and precise right from the start, "The Rogue Pair" shows a definite progression and development in approach and attitude. The use of samples is used sparingly and to much better effect, leaving the music to take centre stage. With Arp less intent on making socio-political comment and more intent on progression of the C/A/T sound, "The Rogue Pair" is a significant step forward for the project and makes his next album and even more promising prospect.


[C/A/T] / [Crunch Pod]

Direct Link: http://www.auralpressure.com/review/c/cat_the_rogue_pair.html

Other Reviews:

C/A/T: [The Prisoner]
C/A/T: [Worldwide Totalitarian Control]

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