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Order & Joy

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Anyone might be forgiven for blanching a bit at the album cover, with its not-quite-a-swastika artwork, and song titles like "Wahrheit," "Was Ist," and "New Ideal." Not to mention an album title that evokes equally the phrases "ode to joy" and "strength through joy." It's OK, though. When these guys sing, "Without order there is no joy," they seem to be going for irony. At least, I think they are: Irony is a little hard to carry off with beats this punishing and accents this German, and on "Finalism" they complain with apparent sincerity about people "having too much fun/ getting nothing done." But on "Was Ist" they wax equally bitter about hatred and ignorance, and everywhere there are lyrical hints of an old-fashioned liberalism that clashes (rather pleasantly) with the goose-stepping beats. In other words, the groove may be fascist, but the songs aren't. If Laibach and Front 242 had a baby, it would sound something like this.

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