Title: Kempers Head
Label: Killer Pimp
Genre: Industrial Rock
03 The Death of Everything
05 Dream Dream (demo)
06 Weapons (Diamonds remix)
Is industrial really a genre or an element of sound? One particular ancient enlightened civilization noticed that there are three types of aural experience: sound, noise, and mute. Ulterior employ all but the last, save ‘tween tracks. Noise and sound in equal measures is Ulterior’s pantheon.
Ulterior are one of many bands that hype has clamped genre upon to encourage sympathetic listener-ship. There’s a great many shades of industrial and Ulterior definitely employ a grind of mechanical noise. They just lance it in semi-quavers of elephantine electronic rhythms and walls of feedback and fuzz churned by meat grinders, stuffed into electronic signals, warped in fuck-knows-what and vomited out again in unexplained frequencies that were once guitars. They also make it hypnotically and vehemently catchy.
Their sound has one of dark disgust for the crap that passes as music in the world (check their press release) and it is something that is pleasantly and instantly noticeable in the thundering riot of loathing and pounding of relentless emptiness they summon – one of cacophony and desolation. Preponderance on incessant percussive repetition might seem uninspired, but Ulterior put it to good use. Like a bio-mechanical trained pit-bull whose legs already are in full gallop the drums are unleashed onto a surface and the band sleds furiously along with dog leads strangling its neck obliviously in a brutal and violent ride.
Lyrics are chanted and looped in spin recitation with bitter introspection as in ‘Death of Everything’ where, “When you’ve got everything, it’s the death of everything. You left blood in my throat...” encircles a mantra amidst screaming feedback. The menace of “I’ll cut away your smile, because I’ve got weapons...” in ‘Weapons’ is a dovetailed amalgamation that raves to the club-beats as much as it slices up eardrums with white noise and endless reverb and delay. While not intricate, it is a cohesive effort for the first four tracks. ‘Dream Dream’ does sound like a demo, though a very good one, whereas the remix of ‘Weapons’ offers a far more sinister dose of the sound these lads machinate.
The EP comes with enhanced content, an unexpected bonus. With two videos in two formats each. Seeing the band in action gives a stage presence to match the dark funnel of noise. There’s definitely a bit of posing going on, but their music more than delivers. The disc is a compilation of their two UK-only 12” discs and with the enhanced content here you are provided with another three mp3’s, all remixes of Weapons of high quality, though the best tracks remain the six on disc. Kempers Heads comes in a digifile sleeve with insert in full colour gloss.