Content: Does the band name Atropine ring a bell? This Norwegian duo gained some recognition during the 90s having released 3 albums in between 1996 and 2001. The duo also got involved in other projects like Panzerveps, but now Pogrom and Epilektrician return to Atropine to release a 4th full length.
There was no better and more appropriated label than EK Product to release the ‘resurrection’-album of Atropine. The intro-like cut doesn’t say much, but from the 2nd track on we’re moving throughout a pure, rough and old-school EBM sound carried by harsh, exclaiming vocal parts. Spoken samplings and dark, freaky atmospheres join in to embellish the sound universe of Atropine. Several tracks are clearly reminding me of the early years of Skinny Puppy, but I also have to mention the darker work of X Marks The Pedwalk and even the ‘klinikal’ sound approach of Mortal Constraint. “Recurring Nightmares” is not reinventing the EBM style but rather bringing good-old souvenirs back to life. Most of the tracks are clearly early 90s-minded, but there also is a more contemporary touch emerging now and then. In the end it all sounds like Atropine still composes music like the 90s are still going on.
The album reveals several cool tracks, but the 2nd half is absolutely terrific. The minimalism and intelligence in sound and arrangements revealed at “Black Sludge” is absolutely remarkable. A similar, but empowered EBM formula comes back at “Bonesaw” while I also have to mention essential cuts like “Luminax” and “Churn”. A last noticeable track is the complex-sounding remix of “Churn” by Struck 9.
Atropine is not exactly dealing with the most common and simple side of EBM, but explores intelligent and well-crafted dark-body fields. This is a production that will appeal to fans of the aforementioned bands and to lovers of 90s EBM.
Conclusion: This album is a styled and artistic old-school EBM album featuring a succession of noticeable tracks. The comeback of Atropine definitely appears to be successful!