- There has always been a sense of playfulness about the Freund der Familie camp. That's why their latest release on their RAW imprint comes as something of a surprise. FDFs "Hydra," in particular, relinquishes nothing, not even a hi-hat, as it marches sternly on. It recalls Tommy Four Seven's recent output, but has spacier sound fields and is more restrained in its use of industrial sounds to create lonely shards of melody and texture. The magnetism of "Hydra" lies instead amidst the subtleties of the whirlpool drones that circle the bass.
Newcomer Phidias is responsible for the standout track, however. Opening in ominous fashion with what sounds almost like a gong, "Cygnus Astratus" seeps rather than marches towards a gloomy and hypnotic climax. The kick drum has a particularly attractive acoustic feel to it, perfect for a big system, but it's the gothic drones and Coil-like atmospheres that provide the spectacle. Bird watchers might notice that "Cygnus Astratus" is indeed the Black Swan. It's completely coincidental, of course, but Phidias' track feels something akin to a dance floor remix of the recent Black Swan album on Experimedia.
A Phidias - Cygnus Astratus
B FDF - Hydra (Radio Edit)