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Album Review

Spahn Ranch was responsible for some of the most exciting industrial sounds of the 1990s, but during the latter part of the decade, it became increasingly clear that the group didn't want to embrace industrial music exclusively. While Spahn Ranch was noisy and abrasive in the beginning, it became more and more melodic as time passed. In fact, very few of the songs on Closure (which was recorded in 2000 and released in 2001) favor an industrial approach — most of the time, Spahn Ranch provides dark wave/dark electronic sounds that are moody and gloomy rather than abrasive. "Destruction" and "Mind Over Matter" are relevant to the industrial-dance and EBM scenes, but, overall, the material is much closer to goth rock's brooding sorrow than industrial's in-your-face anger — and that is true of original songs like "The Last Laugh" and "Reasons" as well as an unlikely cover of P.J. Harvey's "The River," which is a radical departure from her version and works surprisingly well in a dark wave setting. Some industrial purists wish that Spahn still sounded exactly like it did in the early '90s, but this excellent CD indicates that the group is doing the right thing by continuing to grow and evolve.


Formed: Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s

The industrial dance outfit Spahn Ranch was formed in 1992 by Matt Green and Rob Morton. The two had been writing songs together for nearly five years prior and had signed to Cleopatra to release a self-titled four-song EP that same year. In 1993, Athan Maroulis joined Spahn Ranch as vocalist and completed the group to issue their debut album Collateral Damage. Their sophomore effort, The Coiled One, appeared two years later in the midst of Morton leaving the band due to creative and logistical differences....
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Closure, Spahn Ranch
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