Review Summary: Industrial dance music as boisterous as one could want it, even if some of the sounds are a bit overly-familiar for KMFDM’s sound.
It’s safe to say that KMFDM is the most successful and longest running industrial music group that doesn’t take themselves seriously. While all their other contemporaries made the genre known for overt angst and horror-themed theatrics, KMFDM have spent their nearly thirty year career keeping a frequent output-rate of industrial music made with the raves in mind above all else. The same scene their music is made for may be taking a dive in popularity in even the underground as of late, but these German pioneers have still been as consistent in their new releases as ever in recent years.
For their eighteenth album Kunst
, it’s a no brainer to any fan that KMFDM doesn’t stray too far from the formula they’ve been comfortable with for years. However, what’s accomplished on Kunst
is a satisfying mix of their tried and true formula that fans will come to expect and desire, and some new ingredients thrown into the mix to keep things interesting. As for the familiar elements, the hulking industrial metal guitars chug and churn just as much as they had on the group’s most metal-oriented release Nihil
; prepared to take no prisoners on a charged-assault on the dance-floor. The usual supply of ridiculous samples and audio clips add a good layer of humor to a few of the songs, especially the opening title track in which frontman Sascha Konietzko once again proclaims to “Kill-Mother-***ing-Depeche-Mode” just as he did on the group’s 1993 single “Sucks”.
While the staple aspects of the group’s sound are here in top form, the real treat about Kunst
are the synth beats themselves. They don’t feel as linear as they have on many KMFDM releases, being much more glitchy, and having a more crunching groove to them as opposed to a lunging pace. Influences from other UK electronic dance scenes such as big beat, breakbeat, and synthpunk are strongly showcased through the stomping quality these infectious beats bring Kunst
as a whole.
The elements that fans will except are present and accounted for on Kunst
, which keeps it from being more original than it could be, but the electro-industrial anthems these elements come to form are much more invigorating than they have been on past releases. While they may not be bringing a lot of invention to the industrial genre after thirty years, and although Kunst
is just as over the top but not as diverse as their preceding effort WTF?!
, KMFDM certainly haven’t started lacking in bringing variety to their sound based around just plain fun industrial music.