The All Seeing Hand – Mechatronics
This album is insane. That’s the only accurate description I can come up with. If that didn’t make it clear: The All Seeing Hand are decidedly not for everyone. A three piece consisting of a drummer, a throat singer and a wizard on turntables/electronics, who describe themselves a mix of ‘electronic’, ‘post-punk’ and simply ‘noise’, their album’s chart position will not be getting mixed up with Kanye West’s anytime soon. Their intended audience seems to be people who are bored with what the entire history of music has to offer. This is heavy metal without guitars, with a madman shouting incoherently over the top. So it’s not for the faint of heart, but is worthwhile for the more adventurous listener, especially if they’re addicted to bass.
Mechatronics, the band’s second album, contains a number of differences from their self-titled album from 2011. They’re not always improvements however. The good: there is a marked improvement in quality here. The bass tones make your body rumble, best heard on the glorious video-game symphony ‘Maximum Capacity’. If the multitude of sounds on this track are indeed only coming from the turntablist they call Alphabethead, then he is a genius.
The bad: throat singer Jonny Marks is featured more on this album, and in addition to the long drawn out drones he utilised on the first album, he has developed a technique where he sounds like a tracheostomy patient trying to communicate. This only ever detracts from the music, and it’s there a lot. The clearest comparison I can make is to Papa Lazarou from the show The League Of Gentlemen.
Thankfully however, the good outweighs the bad. It’s a marvel that only three people can make the wild mix of sounds present here, and the music the band makes is quite inspired and in parts oddly danceable . Aside from the previously mentioned ‘Maximum Capacity’, there’s the manic jam of ‘The Claw’, the ironically joyful ‘Lying Dead, With A Bar Of Soap’ with it’s “Oo-oo-oo-oo!” refrain, and the pure, creepy ambience of the final track ‘Cadentia’, complete with vinyl runout groove.
So if you’re after something new, try Mechatronics. New doesn’t even begin to explain it. I can’t wait to see what they do live.
Here’s the previous effort;
Check out Alphabethead’s solo material too. Click here.