Review: Mortiis

“The Smell of Rain”

The evil troll returns. What an image Mortiis has. And he creates the music to match. Mortiis writes and records most the music, but has a few musicians to round things out here and there. The overall effect is dark, gothic tinged and sampler loop driven creepiness. A smoothed out KMFDM is a dumb reference, but might give some an idea what spectrum we are taking about.

The vocals are surprisingly clear and urgent. Songs usually build up around an electro-synth bounce and then layer up and down to create dynamics. When Mortiis assaults, he does it with a barrage of industrial brutality laced with an electronic charge.

It’s a refreshing change from rocks primary weapon, the guitar. Although Rammstein type riffage punches through most tracks in select passages, it’s pushed into more of a supporting role, both in composition and in the actual mix. It’s the combination of rich, grandiose, cathedral type keyboard orchestrations that are pulled apart by darker, more stripped down and abrasive electronic elements that define the Mortiis approach. Caressing with lush movements and then scratching it raw with some infected technology sound.

It’s beautifully disturbing.