Atropine – Recurring Nightmares | Review by Grave Concerns E-zine

Fifteen years in the making starting at the ripe age of 1994 is Atropine that consists of Alex Jarlev and Tomas Kulberg from Oslo/Drammen. EK Product has took the devil by the horns and decided to give Atropine a fresh Debut of sorts. Like a time capsule back to that tender age is where we will become accustomed to throughout this amazing and very talented work of art that is Reccuring Nightmares.

Entrapment within walls; the cold wind chills begin to ignite the dormant passage ways leading down the dampened hall with the knocking from door to door beginning to increase. Reaching around the corner extending down yet another hallway the sound of dementia and restrained human life beg to call. The wind wrapping amongst the plastic lining boarded windows, chains leading to an empty room as the echoes from the metallic bass drum rings close begging us to enter and sit. We have moved through the array of soundscape presented by the first track of Atropine’s newest album Recurring Nightmares, entitled, Glass Jaw.

Caught between worlds we slowly become accustomed to the chant and glitch effects glimmering through the beginning of the next track on this other worldly land, Shears. With a nod to older industrial acts, incorporating the shriek and growl although minimal at times, there still carries much progression throughout certain points musically amidst this track. Although not continuously flowing from progression to this track it still carries the vibe and feel that Atropine is perfectly conveying in his world of nightmares.

Remaining Limb starts off from a point that could have also been fit perfectly right after the beginning track as well. Taking us back into the dream-like state conveying a horror related theme throughout the album thus far this track takes that picture in mind multiplying that a bit further with the combination of sample work, rustic like heating pipes clanking in the depth of winter pumping blood to flow through the veins of a killer taking a martial approach with the percussion work, re-lent less samples to convey the horrific acts yet to fallow as we work our way into the limbs of the cadaverous being that begs to be taunt with vengeful acts of retaliation driving the beat of bodies shaken and torn and head wound concussion like noise seeping from the underbelly as the human selected esoteric embalming rituals take forth like a razor getting caught on bone. Yet another dream induced track set forth by Atropine.

As the chorus-like pad sweeps in conjunction with the noise that fallows, Retch Trigger reminds us that we are on the same edge of dawn’s creation into something more pleasant but will we hit that spot just yet? I’d say no. Although on a more melodic direction then the point we left off at from Remaining Limb this does take us into a very driven old-school like industrial feel once again which is a great thing to hear and escape from the cyber, future-evident ebm/electro industrial that infiltrates most of what we hear today in this related sub-genre. Not to say this project is doing something completely different, but taking a lot of older influences and combining them in today’s aspect setting forth something entirely its own.

The sound of flesh cutting threw arteries never sounded as grand and lustful as the track The Second Culling has shown. So far this track is one of my favorites with its key progression, melodic chorus work, and intricate percussion changes. A very well thought and put together track that keeps progressing upwards into different moods set forth at one minute to the next.

The melodic nature carries forth carrying into Coercion. A mid tempo tribal like percussion work that   fallows up with a pad moving into a somewhat upbeat heart pounding track with the gritty, distorted vocals drenching itself throughout the track the blood ridden residue slaughtered so nicely amongst the walls. Taking on different tempos, key progressions, and never lacking a dull moment of artistic expression this is another track I was impressed with.

One thing is for certain so far that Atropine is really doing their own thing. You won’t hear much if any electro-industrial four on the floor like beats here and I salute you Atropine for sticking to your guns on this marvelous ride through one’s darkness dreams. Cultivating the timbre of a mass dissection Reject starts off with more percussion work with the over bodies mechanical equipment blood pumping in the foreground elevating itself into the verse with the same style we are accustomed to from Atropine thus far bumping, and injecting audible visions of nightmarish visions with a slight spooky undertone about midway. Never ceasing to repeat much in one track as I’ve noticed many tracks have a constant progression of feeling, torture, depravity that always continues to drive upwards although causing much needed breaks from the harshness along the way.

What visions deliver from the first listen of this track as if one was waiting in the midst of a deserted emergency room with barren life, and rejected human life as the commanders of an operation ready to set forth. With all the bleeps and filtered pumping that leads throughout this track as waiting for the dissection to begin. Flipping through channels half way on the rustic television barely hanging to hope as we are imprisoned to the call of demented surgery set to take forth upon us with no hope on leaving the dissection table.

Once we look at the damage done, left alone to fend our way out of this dream. All life has left but the sound of Black Sludge hangs high taunting us to no escape. A more danceable approach to an older genre raising its head from the dead. Another favorite on this album.

Luminax really sets the vision for me of escapement. Hard pounding drums set with fast synth work sitting us forth to run amongst the barren walls checking from one corner to the next as if we should deliver us forth on the run. Looking back as the horde fallows us. Limping, running, and straying forth with arms out gathering speed. With the dripping filtered saw like noise; we see the light at the end of the tunnel. Or have we?

Right when we see the light, looking back to see the creatures setting forth with medical equipment; turning to run the metallic hinges of the aluminum door crashes down holding us in to this reoccurring nightmare never to let us go. The pounding of the percussion gathers close entrapped in the midst of an inner circle of experimentation once again we are surrounded in mid silence. Hands reach out grabbing us from every corner. Pushing, clawing our way to a safe haven we now realize this salivating answer is not an option Bone Saw.

Churn reminds us the unrelenting heaviness of Atropine is not going anywhere anytime soon. Closing the book on this vision but leaving us with wonderment as to how things will end in the next chapter of Atropine. Hopefully the wait isn’t long.

But before we leave and walk away from this album we have one remix by Struck 9 of the track, Churn starting off with an airy feel, arpeggiated synths that climb itself into one heavy danceable track. What a great way to end this album in its entirety.

As this marvelous journey of unknown vision draws to an end, A couple things I can say to sum it all up is that this album is a very amazing breath of fresh air. Fans of SP and older industrial infused electronic work will surely fall in love with this album. Brutal, Original, and Full of Talent.

Thank you Atropine!