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Album Review

When a band on the Metropolis label is billed as "not conforming to one style," you can usually take that with a very large grain of salt. Not since 4AD has a label had such a consistently recognizable sound, owing largely to its love of Northern European industrial and darkwave outfits. But with Project Pitchfork, you can take that claim to the bank. The latest effort from Peter Spilles and Dirk Scheuber draws on an impressively wide range of influences, from Baroque music to prog rock to industrial to straight-up pop. The band's weakness remains its aversion to melody; despite some interesting and at times even beautiful chord progressions, Spilles' vocals remain almost entirely tuneless. And if they're going to insist on singing in English, they might want to run their lyrics past a native speaker before committing excruciating non sequiturs like "You knee in front of thee/You little wannabe" to tape. But there are some very fine moments here, including the funky "Chains," the rockish "Echoes," and the downright catchy "Merry-Go-Round to Hell." Don't be fooled by the song title "It's Spring," by the way — spring is apparently a time for growling about nightmares and homelessness. Not bad overall.

Biography

Formed: 1989 in Hamburg, Germany

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Germany's Project Pitchfork are veterans of the goth scene, combining electronic dance with ominous industrial flourishes since 1989. Since the band's inception, vocalist Peter Spilles and keyboardist/programmer Dirk "Scheubi" Scheuber have been at the fore. They debuted in 1991 with Dhyani and proceeded to release album after album -- almost yearly -- for the next decade. In 1992, they released two LPs: Lam-'Bras and Entities. An extension of the latter, the Souls/Island EP was released in 1993...
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Kaskade, Project Pitchfork
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