CD REVIEW: Saints of Eden - Shameless EP
By Alex Jasperse - 11/20/2006 - 12:24 PM EST
Artist: Band: Saints of Eden
Album: Shameless EP 
Label: Metech Recordings
Production/Musicianship Grade: 9.5/10
Songwriting Skills: 8/10
Performance Skill: 7.5/10
With their self-described, deft mash-up of “punk hardcore, Goth, techno and industrial metal,” Saints of Eden’s forthcoming release, Shameless, ties it all together into a tight, crisp package.
Hailing from the UK, Saints of Eden creates a hybrid of post-industrial electronic and EBM rhythms, decorated with chugging metal accents, that comes together to form a dark, danceable atmosphere. While the general music ethos seems a throwback to the mid-80’s heyday of glam and pop band electronic sounds, the bands’ layers upon layers of samples and programming, generates an emotional yet vaguely creepy music that just happens to rock considerably.
Opening with the album’s self-titled track, Cian Houchin (vocals and programming) welcomes listeners with a slow, ballad-like introduction, before launching into guest rapper T. Amore’s intellectual lyrical assault. Textured with layers of reverb and delay, vocal melodies bounce between both vocalists, in an all out street-smart rumble, egged on by pounding guitars and drums in the background. Scattered throughout are the occasional piano lines that glide effortlessly from left to right, while computerized sounds fill in the empty spaces with lush synth qualities.
As the mechanical vibes carry on into the 80’s inspired Ice, and the infectiously catchy The Price Ya Gotta Pay, both are decorated by slow, (and sometimes) spoken vocals that create utterly mesmerizing, head-banging grooves. It almost feels wrong, but it’s just so gratifyingly hypnotic.
Driven by thick drumbeats and programming, So Near highlights Houchin’s flare for electronic textures. Featuring raspier, untethered vocals – which travels the sonic space in between – the heavily-layered performance is designed to reveal itself over the course of many playbacks.
Shameless as a whole is combined with infectious and terminal beats, which keep pressing forward in ways that throw interesting entanglements of sound effects, heavily-crafted guitars, and beats into a dance-rich EP. Although it shares many similarities with German industrial rockers, Rammstein (as well as a hint of Juno Reactor – particularly the music used in The Matrix films), it nonetheless stands up on its own as a solid and highly entertaining electronic release.
The Verdict: 8.3/10
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