Initial Prayer – The last men in Europe

This cd of an unknown band with not very attractive artwork made me a bit sceptical. But after having listened to “The last men in Europe” a couple of times, I’m quite enthousiastic.

The sound of Initial Prayer is doomy and hypnotizing. On many tracks they have a slow and monotonous sound often reminding me of 80’s industrial icons like Controlled Bleeding, Coil or Swans. But there are also seem to be neoclassical, psychedelic and krautrock influences present. That Initial Prayer sounds a bit nostalgic is not so strange, because apparently they have been active since the early 80’s.

Distorted guitars with a lot of feedback play a prominent role on the first few tracks, while atmospheric synths play a bigger role in the second half. The convincing vocals are often declamated in a way resembling the likes of Boyd Rice. To make things more interesting, the lyrics deal with all kinds of challenging philosophical concepts.

There are even a few catchy, melodic tunes present on this album. Especially the infectious ‘We serve’, complete with wavy synths and handclaps, could well be served at an underground dancefloor. The slower tracks are also worthwhile, like the slow and compelling hymn ‘Prelude’.

To end with some namedropping: the cd has been mastered by veterans Sion Orgon and Thighpaulsandra. A recommended album which should appeal to everyone with an interest in somewhat retro industrial & wave as well as postrock.

artist: Initial Prayer
label: Corrosive Growth Industries
details: cd, 9 tracks [cgicd - 021]