KMFDM

Paradise

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AllMusic Review by

Taking the sociopolitical angst of Hell Yeah one step further, industrial mainstays KMFDM spew a healthy amount of angst and fury all over those who are destroying the world with greed and hate on their sardonically titled Paradise. Their 21st full-length, Paradise is intensely political and not very subtle, which is extremely cathartic for kindred spirits. Tapping into bubbling social rage with their typical club-friendly beats and corrosive metal power, the set is openly anti-fascist, anti-bigot, and anti-Trump, a righteous call-to-arms to those furious with the state of the U.S. and the world at large. From the title track ("This planet is a paradise/A paradise for assholes") to the Trump-sampling opener "K-M-F" (which plays with the false rumored meaning of the first three letters in the band's name), core members Sascha Konietzko and Lucia Cifarelli deliver anthem after anthem of simplistic-yet-direct singalongs fit to soundtrack a global uprising. Calling out discrimination, nepotism, false piety, corruption, capitalism, and the crooked police state, their message is as subtle as a boot to the teeth. Momentarily forgetting the actual anxiety-provoking connections to reality in 2019, Paradise is a blast. Throwbacks to their peak '90s days can be heard on pulsing gems "WDYWB" -- featuring "diva" vocalist Cheryl Wilson, who fans will remember from 1996's XTORT -- and "Megalo," an amped-up reworking of 1997's Symbols/Mortal Kombat: Annihilation club hit "Megalomaniac." The most rewarding, fan-service callback to their legacy arrives on the mecha-horror "Binge Boil & Blow" (not, ironically, "Piggy"), which marks the return of longtime fixture Raymond Watts, his first appearance with KMFDM since 2003's WWIII. Other highlights include "Oh My Goth," a slinky cut fronted by Cifarelli that sounds like Toni Halliday and Donita Sparks dragged through a Rob Zombie spookshow, and the pulsing "Disturb the Peace," another thematic centerpiece to the album that declares the "Commander in Chief...is a clown and a thief!" Without a wasted moment on the album -- even the dubby outro to "Paradise" and expansive closer "No God" are welcome moments of rest -- Paradise is one of KMFDM's stronger late-era efforts, elevated by real-world dread and urgency that begs to be transformed into action.

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