Industrial Monk

Prophecies

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AllMusic Review by

Frederick Vogler and Takashi Kawai are the duo called Industrial Monk. Together they have combined the instrumentation and relative accessibility of 21st century ambient electronic beats with the melorhythmic richness of the Gregorian chant, which surfaced circa 600. The chants by the Los Angeles Chamber Singers are in Latin (as are all Gregorian chants) and are set against drum and loop programming by Kawai, the guitar of Goffrey Moore, and Mark Jones' bass. The practical art of the Gregorian chant is a marvel to hear in this setting, since both techno and chants can get monotonous when overdone or devoid of harmonious connotations. However, this fusion is brilliantly placed in the musically satisfying arrangements of "Ave Maria," "Vide Domine," "Salve Regina," "Beata Dei Genitrix," and "Prophet." A rap chant by the Los Angeles Chamber Singers is especially innovative and daring. Additional vocals from Brad McMurray, William Hanrahan, Elin Carlson, and Heather West add to the idea development. Liturgical harmony that is traditionally attributed to the Roman Catholic Church fused with the technology of the 21st century makes Industrial Monk's second release just as original and appealing as their debut effort, Magnificat.

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