Android Lust is just one person, Shikhee by name, and in the tradition of such auteurs as Trent Reznor, she may have a guest performer here or there, but this is all her vision and band, and she does a great job at it as well. The Reznor connection isn't too far off when it comes to Android Lust's music -- Shikhee is clearly a fan of his industrial/goth/metal fusions and experiments and happily applies the same sense of recombination to her own work. Notably, though, unlike all the wannabes that bubbled up after The Downward Spiral hit it big, Shikhee's own combinations of wounded emotion and rampaging anger taps into the same sense of romantic apocalypse instead of just flailing for its own sake. Her sense of sometimes hot and sometimes cold, explicitly female anger and lust calls to mind everyone from Marianne Faithfull to Toni Halliday, while the combination of everything from Middle Eastern melodies to nervous Depeche Mode-styled keyboards demonstrates a similar sense of wide-ranging inspiration. The unsettled rush of "Panic Wrought," the combination of stabbing bass and woozy, bansheelike synth wails on "Stained," and "Another Void" and its mix of chopped-up guitar melodies and keening strings over a roiling beat are all stellar examples of how smart and sensitive her skills are. Meanwhile, the stentorian but chilled pace of "Follow" is as good a portrait of sheer obsession and entrapment into a relationship as any, in the perceived genre or out of it. When Shikhee hits a full-on dancefloor stride with songs like "The Want" and "Unbeliever," it's as good a sign as any that an electronic body music revival and reinterpretation is back on the cards, as well as being in very good hands.
The Dividing Review
by Ned Raggett