Thursday 23 February 2017

Review: Contaminated Intelligence – 'Mental Fractures'

'Mental Fractures'

Utah's Contaminated Intelligence revisit their 2014 EP 'Mental Fractures' and augment the original record with five new bonus tracks, stretching it into a full-length album in it's own right. The original was self-released by the band in 2014 after main man Jourdan Turner suffered a snowboarding accident. The release in it's current form now follows his recovery from that time until now, and in the process pushes their experiments with Drum n Bass, Down-tempo Break Beats, and Ambient atmospheres to the fore.

The result is a very experimental but danceable album which while not wholly at odds with the industrial-punk flavour of their last release, 'Status Control', is certainly less vitriolic and more introspective in it's instrumental wanderings. Yet songs such as 'CRUNCH!', 'Recovery', and 'Recovery Pt 2.' from the original tracklist maintain a decisive dancefloor appeal. While the newer contributions such as 'Unscrewed (Removed)', 'Coming Back', and 'Anesthetic Dreams' reflect the band's newer style while maintaining the elements of the original that made it an interesting listening experience.

Production-wise it definitely sounds like a record of two halves. The more crisp modern flavour of the original five versus the grimier sounds of the newest contributions. But it strangely works well when you think of it as side a and side b.

This was an interesting move to revisit an earlier work in this kind of way. But the original EP was worth re-highlighting and the new songs are just as valid as anything included on last year's full-length album release, so why not? The result is a very interesting album that cover's the entirety of the band's sonic experimentation over the past few years. A risky idea but incredibly well-executed and will certainly be on that pays off for them.  

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