October 25, 2001

Test Spins: Techno Animal

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Techno Animal can best be described as an unnatural hybrid of Wu-Tang Clan’s inner-city stylings and the more industrial parts of the Dust Brothers’ Fight Club soundtrack. But where Wu-Tang’s sounds sometimes mimic the motions and buzzing of their mascot, the killer bee, this Animal seems derived from a much more dangerous, pissed-off bastard of a predator. Bomb’s rhythms are low, rumbling, and probably shouldn’t be allowed outside of a rave. The intensely mechanical beats are hardly enjoyable, and they become more annoying as each song repeats the basic sound of the previous one. The overall feeling is of listening to a car rev up for the CD’s entire length.

The only times when Techno Animal shines are when the rap lyrics take over. This happens less frequently than it should, but when it does the lyrics meld seamlessly with the beats and enrich the song. On the standout “We Can Build You,” the repetition of the line “Hold on, hold up, hold up, hold on, hold this/ Black hole” echoes the music, elevating the song above the jackhammer mood of the rest of the album.

Archived article by Andy Guess