Herrschaft - Architects Of The Humanicide
Self Financed
Industrial Metal
5 songs (22:33)
Release year: 2006
Reviewed by Kayla

Despite the decidedly German-sounding moniker, Herrschaft is a four-man industrial metal project hailing from Paris, France. Their brand of metal is far more evocative of the inhuman city than the ice-bound woods at midnight or gore-soaked Satanic Mass; for the most part it falls so far to the industrial side that the word “metal” is almost a misnomer. On their five-song EP Architects Of The Humanicide, only two are really built on a solid base of guitar leads and riffs, and while the drumming is fairly prominent throughout, the focus is more on providing a beat for the synth melodies to build off of than showcasing anything resembling a fill. However, if your tastes run to the electronic, especially in the vein of Front Line Assembly, Herrschaft turn in a fairly good effort.

The industrial elements of Architects Of The Humanicide are brought to the fore immediately; the first track, Rise To Humanicide, is the most purely industrial, with nary a riff to be found. Rather, it’s a quiet, atmospheric introduction that starts off gentle but quickly builds to a more sinister crescendo. The rest of the album is almost as heavy on the melody as Rise To Humanicide, although the intensity gets cranked up even on the slower, more industrial tracks.

While those slower tracks comprise more than half the EP, what they lack in aggression they make up for in an intensity built from a multitude of well-blended layers. Haunting Torture, the most atmospheric track after the opening, sinks the fairly simple drumming and guitar work deep into at least two separate synth melodies, one based on a stringed sound and one on keys, and these apart from the purely electronic sounds that provide accent marks. The synth lines are both heavily processed to give them a tone that blends well with the inorganic sounds.

Two of the tracks, Apogee and Self Bondage, let the metal aspects come more to the fore, and crank up the tempo to complement. The riffing, like the drumming, is fairly simple. While the band describes itself as "electro-metal," the latter aspects are very sparse, and highly processed. The riffing itself is grooving and anonymous enough that it’s hard to really assign it a genre. However, it does fit well with the rest of the music, so in this case, the spareness and highly processed nature aren’t necessarily bad things. The riffs aren’t the focus of the music, and only add a bit of power to the more melodious industrial noise.

Vocalist M.X. delivers his lines in a powerful, smooth screech that wouldn’t sound out of place on a raw black metal album. His vocals are still highly processed, of course, but given that these guys aren’t trying to evoke the frozen woods, it’s not at all objectionable.

Anonymous riffs or not, Herrschaft have put together a decent EP. Their focus is clearly more on the industrial side of their music than the metal side, and thus it is in those sinister, electronic melodies that the real interest lies. If your tastes run to the electronic, Herrschaft is worth your time.

Killing Songs :
Apogee, Self Bondage
Kayla quoted 68 / 100
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