- In a recent interview, Arnaud Rebotini claimed that Black Strobe were never "a democracy," thus suggesting the abrupt secession from Ivan Smagghe almost two years ago was never going to affect the band's branded blend of industrialist sonics, metal inclinations and brutal rhythms (i.e. Rebotini's influences). So while Smagghe went back to the underground to record minimalist cuts with the help of Tim Paris and Danton Eeprom, Rebotini took The Black Strobe experience live and became the best Opeth cover band France had to offer.
Rebotini is still a techno DJ at heart, though, and for everyone who thought Burn Your Own Church, Black Strobe's underwhelming debut album, drastically severed all ties with anything loosely electronic, Rebotini's new offering will please late adopters and hardcore believers both. Shit, it might even mark the first step in the reconciliation process between these two old frenemies.
Recorded with vintage analog equipment such as The ARP Odyssey, Korg's Mono/Poly, and Roland's ever-reliable TR-808, Music Components is Rebotini's vision stripped of pretension and back to its constitutive, er, components. To some, it might even sound what Burn Your Own Church should have been like. "1314," "The Swamp Waltz," "Conakry Filter Sweep," and "777" are basically Black Strobe productions circa 2002-2003, a time when dark Norwegian metal ascendance wasn't even an option; they have an alarming sense of urgency and creepy menace, and they're more satisfying for it. "Decade of Aggression," on the other hand, skillfully condenses Rebotini's aforementioned inspirations into one bouncy and relentless techno cut worthy of Dave Clarke, while Rebotini's romantic desire to "interact directly with the instrument" (dixit his recent bio) also suggested a softer side to the guy, hence the Boards of Canada-esque feel to "Cm," the album's sole serene moment.
Album closer "Mnll" doesn't sound that far off, at least in spirit, from what Tim Paris and Ivan Smagghe did on their recent "Hen's Bell" collaboration, with delicate chimes, subtle shifts and ascending chords lasting well over ten minutes. (Their union may have never been a democracy, but these two exes still share a similar vision of what trance-inducing techno should feel like.) In a grudge-free world, Smagghe would play "Mnll" to death. Sure, both have obviously moved on, but on the basis of Music Components, it is clear these two totally deserved one another.
01. The Spirit Of Boogie
02. Un Cheval D'Orgueil
05. The Swamp Waltz
06. Horns Of Innocence
07. Conakry Filter Sweep
09. Decade Of Aggression