Psykosonik

Psykosonik

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Chicago-based Wax Trax Records has been the home of industrial music semi-legends such as My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult and Ministry. However, Psykosonik takes a decidedly different approach. The photogenic quartet released its self-titled debut album in 1993; at the time, the "rave" scene was slowly inching its way into the mainstream, with bands like Utah Saints and 2 Unlimited softening the harsher underground-techno elements and finding minor success. Psykosonik's sound has its share of techno flourishes and blow-out-the-speakers synth effects, but the hook-heavy release proves Psykosonik is definitely a pop band at heart.

The singles "Welcome to My Mind" and "Silicon Jesus," included here, are actually no different in style and spirit than EMF's left-field hit "Unbelievable," released just a couple of years earlier. But Psykosonik's release came at a time when Nirvana and Green Day ruled the airwaves, solidifying flash in the pan status for poppy techno bands like EMF and Jesus Jones. Psykosonik's chance to hit the big time was slim, which is a shame; both "Welcome to my Mind" and "Silicon Jesus" are A-1 pop songs, with infectious hooks and spirited arrangements.

The rest of Psykosonik suffers from artistic pretension; titles like "Krankphreak" and "Acid Hammer" certainly indicate the band's desire to be "hardcore," and other dancefloor rave-ups like "Teknojihad" are downright goofy. But for the most part, Psykosonik is harmless, enjoyable ear candy.

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