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Psychic Wars

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Album Review

Spectre is back with his fourth album of new material, and this time his trademark dark, brooding atmosphere is leavened a bit by more energetic beats and lively interpolations of exotic foreign musical elements. After a pair of brief and unnecessary introductory tracks, Psychic Wars gets down to serious business with "Valour," which nicely fuses a sort of hip-hop/trip-hop beat to North African instrumental samples, to very nice effect. "Rolling Force" takes a similar approach, using sampled orchestral strings. One of the album's highlights is "Secrets," a dubbed-up hip-hop number that benefits greatly from the presence of vocalist Honeychild (heard previously as part of Raz Mesinai's Badawi project) and from the mixing genius of Pere Ubu alumnus Tony Maimone. Things bog down a bit after that; the cameo appearances by Sensational are both less than inspired, but "Remembrance" raises the temperature again. Overall, this album is just further proof that Brooklyn is, indeed, the world capital of experimental and progressive hip-hop and general off-kilter beat wizardry. Recommended.


Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s

An appropriately shadowy entity with several albums for WordSound and production spots for Prince Paul and Techno Animal, Spectre is the Nosferatu of underground horrorcore, channeling the more isolated tones of industrial-dub and illbient into hip-hop productions of an intensely paranoid nature. Inspired by the rich legacy of horror films and dark industrial pioneers like Skinny Puppy as well as the old school of hip-hop, the rapper/producer debuted by hosting The Ill Saint Presents Subterranean...
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Psychic Wars, Spectre
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