Realize-Two Human Minutes album review by Mark Jenkins. FFO: Energetic, grim industrial metal
Realize is a sick band that truly delivers Industrial Metal how it should be, free of bullshit and an unrelenting wall of crushing vox/bass and abrasive riffs. Two Human Minutes is their third release and it is staggeringly incredible. You certainly will adore this if you worship Godflesh, Fudge Tunnel etc. This is a terrific genre and the superlatives cannot run hard enough for this release. Realize's first demo/first Mini-album was intensely sick, and Machine Violence was wild but this sets everything on fire with napalm. Moody, dynamic and a gritty, yet antagonistic production aesthetic few get right.
This crushing release is brooding, energetic and grim. And fuck me they get everything so right. And as a fellow industrial musician, I am well aware that is not easy to do. The 14 tracks don't overstay their welcome and everything fits well in a gnarly horroric soundtrack manner. Every track and the sequencing are well thought out and planned but utterly has a warlike hardcore/underground sentiment.
Oblivion In Their Eyes at first seems a strange opener, but after a few full listens it is a moody and amazing song choice as it has red alert-type aggression and depression dripping from it. But like most songs on this record, it is raging, dynamic and a real buzz and is a mad showcase of synth, electro drums and vox, thus a smart peak into the disgustingly heavy works that unfold. However, whilst the first two releases are quite heavy on the worship of the essential greats that inspired them; this is a more tangential approach and dare I suggest, where the band finds their sound. Body Collapse shows us how sludge is a heavy ingredient in the mix and also more experimental throwbacks like FLA and even Skinny Puppy etc in both vocal and tonal approaches.
Realize's clever use of tempo is a recurring strong skill set across this album. In Silence continues with the wonderful use of noise and beats, and the tense build-up is killer. And how's the echo/reverb on the vocals, hell yes. Obviously, the band's previous bands have several degrees in delivering intense music, but the caustic artisan's delivery of a hectic plodding pace wins you over as much. Killing Party brings in the Godflesh distortion like 20 armed regiments paired with an almost Helmet-like harmony-driven foundation. The album has multiple grindingly heavy and monstrous tracks like Predawn Gloom, Subtle Movement, Wishful Thinking and You Obey that are all heavy in different ways be it moshpit fast tracks, slicing crushing sludge/noisy fare or a mix of both. There are also ingeniously quirky tracks such as Unknown Fear- which pummels the fuck out of you and diverts into almost Buddhist-like bells-clever and effective, Natural Bot is atmospheric and cinematic and then the psychotic vocals/sample remind you who you are dealing with, Voice like Cold Running Water is a dancey classic banger in a Berlin underground electro style (some deep, serious programming here-like epically sharp) and the stunning closer Crest Disperal is magnificently harsh, sluggish and the wait for a tempo/vocal change at around 2:30 min is gloriously torturous. The creepy beauty of this track by having a non-standard structure and going for the fear factor works so accurately.
All in all, a solid and compelling album that sinks in with each listen. I personally cannot wait for the next release.