NDE - Kampfbereit [Cold Spring Records - 2012]NDE is a pretty obscure Belgian death industrial duo, with an extremely narrow discography and a good old crust of disinformation and ambiguity around them. In an era when we're overloaded with futile information from our favorite artists, this approach is very welcome.
"Kampfbereit" is their second full length and it's fucking great. Forty-two minutes, thirteen tracks of nasty old school power electronics oozing filth and rage serve a feast of distorted synth loops and eardrum-drilling feedback. The omnipresent, over the top, distorted vocals are perfectly delivered, obviously only barely decipherable and conveying a sense of lingering aggression, frustration and dread. Their overly exaggerated tone reminded me of Whitehouse and Sutcliffe Jugend classics with their bizarre shrieking and tongue-in-cheek attitude.
The sounds are perfect, primitive and basic: very simple and overloaded synth lines, crunchy contact mic noise, mangled guitar/bass drones and microphone feedback is really all you need to get good power electronics. The scarcity of sound elements is made up by their masterful layering and juxtaposition. Actually the only "different" track of the bunch is the first one, where an extremely distorted droning guitar is paired by classic industrial percussive junk metal, in a mix that reminds of Dissecting Table. The quality of the recordings is pretty physical and crude, and I think this material would fare better on tape or on vinyl rather than on CD but this is just fetishistic wanking of course.
All NDE's compositions on this album are pretty short (the longest clocks just a little short than five minutes), so the listening experience is extremely fast and enjoyable. Of course it's a total torture for a normal person's hearing, but for fans of death industrial and nasty harsh noise "Kampfbereit" is a blessing. Highly recommended!Nicola Vinciguerra