CFX & XNDL – The Plague

The first release of the new Dutch label Enfant Terrible, a split record by two German acts. Each artist fills a side of the limited lp with dark electronic music combining a wide variety of styles. As a bonus a remix by Radikale Analog Fraktion has been included.

CFX, who released material on Subversiv*Rec. before, contributes four tracks, sound collages with a strong big city feel. The first sounds of ‘Esined’ quickly make clear that this is no easy listening. Dark classical and filmic sounds are combined with obscure samples and an original restrained rhythmic framework. The orchestral elements bring to mind the film scores of In the Nursery. Nice atmospheric piece of work. On ‘Clinic’ the beats get a little more hectic, sort of experimental drum ‘n bass, again with ambient and at times bombastic classical elements. . Not bad, but a little too long I think. ‘Glad to see’ has somewhat militant vocal samples and a powerful, driving beat, though the various breaks in the song make it a tricky one for the dancefloor. ‘Startrek’ sounds deep and mysterious, with nice retro analogue sounds, a soundtrack for a film full of tension. Makes me think of some of the more tranquil DJ Shadow work.

The B-side is trusted to XNDL, who is also related to the German label Subversiv*Rec. ‘The Plague’ is rather laidback, moody electronica with some hiphop elements and melodic passages. Again quite filmic, also through the vocal samples. ‘Monstrous’ starts with a dirty analogue Bunker-type sound and dominant film samples. After a slow start electro sounds and rhythms take over. A groovy track for lovers of minimal electro. ‘Terrorizer’ nicely builds up the tension, but nothing too interesting happens, except more film samples and a few rhythmic moments which not really work for me. ‘Bad’ is minimal and threatening with a nice atmosphere. Last but not least is a remix by Radikale Analog Fraktion (a project of Dystronic, Beta Evers & J.Vendetta), who together take care of the great Danzig classic ‘Mother’. A very relaxed version with strong 80’s influences. Minimal electro combined with moody electronics and a subtle distorted voice, with some more uptempo and heavier passages. The only really song-based track on this record, but a nice one with ‘hit’ potential.

This split record is a nice debut for Enfant Terrible. Two electronics acts who dare to experiment and know how to create original atmospheres and structures. Most songs are worthwhile and the Danzig cover is simply entertaining. Let’s ee what this label comes up with in the future. Already announced are two EP’s by electronic noise pop band PIA fRAUS.

artist: CFX & XNDL
label: Enfant Terrible
details: lp, 9 tracks, 2004.[enfant 01]