"A Split Second is a Belgian electronic and industrial band. A Split Second is simply too good to be ignored, and from their conception in 1985 it didn’t take the world long to acknowledge the importance of Marc ICKX’s and Chrismar CHAYELL’s unique musical vision.
How in Satan's name does one top this for a band description? You can't. Simple. The moment I discovered Belgium New Wave/EBM/Synthpop act A Split Second, and read this biography floating around the web I knew I was in for a new love affair. Tie this in with the stylish photo of the aforementioned Marc Ickx and Chrismar Chayell rocking out of date leather and sunglasses, and hell I didn't even need to put my hands down my pants to cum. From The Inside
was something of a revelation, like putting your penis through that hole in the wall of the public toilet out of curiosity and feeling someone bite down on the shaft, I had to wonder if I would ever be the same again. Not entirely unlike the AIDS epidemic of the era I caught the bug, ladies and gentleman, for really gay 80's ***
. Not that I hadn't flirted with it before. I think it started with, Funky Town
. But, somehow over the years the 80's came to dominate my music listening habits, and I found myself faced with listening to A Split Second's 1988 album From The Inside
This album is gay. Holy ***, listen to opening track Bend My Body Armour
and tell me European dudes with bad facial hair haven't made out to this in a club before. The beat propels us forward, into a land of obnoxious fat synths and corny rhythms, and Chrismar Chayell sings in a smooth, sensual, subtle vocal performance which penetrates into your very soul, or anus if you will. It sounds so goddamn WRONG, but somehow, just somehow, for all the right reasons. It is an infectious and very danceable blend of electronic, new wave and rock influences, a description I could use for much of From The Inside
. Scandinavian Bellydance
carries the torch for further homoerotic fun, as Chayell opens the track by singing "SCAN-DI-NA-VIAN
" over and over, a suitable introduction to one of the finest excursions into ass bumping rock tinged new wave I have ever heard.
The thing about A Split Second is, the band feels kind of eclectic for a New Wave/EBM/Synthpop group. As mentioned earlier, they have a bit of a pronounced rock influence, there are guitars on a few of the tracks and one of the bonus demos towards the end of the album (Tear Your Rhythm Down
) features riffs and even a shred solo. Jello Biafra appears on The Colosseum Crash
for some reason. The title track is a moody, brooding affair, characterised more by strings than fat sawtooth basslines. It is difficult to put labels on, but Marc Ickx manages to work with plenty of varied sonic textures whilst retaining a sound unique to the group. The lyrics are also very interesting too, with a wacky, almost surreal quality that reminds me more of Talking Heads than anything else. If I were to try and explain A Split Second to someone who had never heard them, in fact, I might be tempted to use such a description as "Talking Heads meets Front 242". But this would be selling them short, in a way.
From The Inside
is a gem of an 80's album. Marc Ickx’s and Chrismar Chayell’s unique musical vision may not be quite as groundbreaking and important as the bands online blurb might have you believe, but goddamn if I don't find this a satisfying, if guilty pleasure to listen to.