CD: Backwards Records BR008 [2006]

Insult 1
A Danger
Watchers Of Disaster
Dismal Red Light
Cyanide Solution
Zero Incrusion
Basement Glass
Insult 2

In late 1998 Patrick Urn met Lucio Duran and formed Asphyxia which became In Ether in 1999 when the duo met Ezra Nye; all of whom are involved in a myriad of other projects both before and since forming In Ether. They cite such legendary underground bands as Coil, Current 93, Nurse with Wound and Death In June as their influences and this is reflected in the sound and composition of their music, drawing from an unorthodox approach to music making.

Proud members of MACOS (Musicians Against the Copyrighting of Samples), In Ether utilise samples sparingly and only when they fit the music or theme being depicted. This non-conformist attitude reflects their love of underground acts, which is further exemplified in 'Strangolati', which features either an amazingly good impersonation of Jhonn Balance (visionary singer of Coil) or the vocal talents of the man himself over a track that could be composed by Coil themselves. The Coil influence is further evident in the style of In Ether's music, everything is clear, sharp and precise, each sound and beat having its place. Tracks such as 'Watchers of Disaster' and 'Strangolati' are especially reminiscent of Coil, which is very much a compliment rather than a criticism.

In Ether are far more than just Coil clones and the music elsewhere on this album proves that. The opening track, 'Gay-Shun', is a jittery precise digital track with a tinny oriental theme while 'A Danger' has a stabbing beat, swirling bassy throb and deranged chanting with vocal similarities to Genesis P Orridge of Psychic TV/Throbbing Gristle fame. 'People' takes a different stance, that of clinical breaks and newscast sample ridden rhythms while 'Dismal Red Light' has a steady insistent beat that builds an air of cinematic tension and portrays a futuristic quality. In contrast, 'Zero Incursion' starts out with an 80's style electro-indie feel to it not dissimilar to New Order of that era and then introduces more Genesis P Orridge style vocals. 'Basement Glass' takes things in a completely different direction, this time with digital glitch sonic destruction and fractured electronics. Hidden at the end of the CD and not listed on the artwork is a short bonus track which is again an undulating experiment in electronic noise manipulation complete with spoken word musings.

Coil and Throbbing Gristle comparisons aside, In Ether are clearly an accomplished group of musicians, influenced by some legenary underground musicians. While these influences are clear in their music, they bring a post-industrial hi-tech glitch noise slant to the sound to take it in a different direction. Showing an ability to switch between experimental and precise sounds throughout Insult to the Unconditioned, In Ether produce an excellent album of many layers and levels that can be enjoyed time and time again.


[In Ether] / [Backwards Records]

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