Chris Corner is not what you would call a conventional musician, therefore it comes as no surprise after six studio albums and several EP’s over the years that the electronic sensual vocalist of IAMX has decided to embark on a journey of an experimental instrumental record.
IAMX started off in London in 2004 as a project which Corner describes as ‘ public therapy’. Former cofounder of the 90s trip hop band Sneakerpimps, the 43 year old delves into an exploration of dark cabaret noise and seductive basslines. Previous albums such as ‘The Alternative’ and ‘ Kiss And Swallow’ are heavily based on themes of death, politics and love.
‘Unfall’ however takes an entirely new direction with little vocals, only miniscule whispers and slight humming noises occur.
When asked about the album recently Corner described the record as a way of decluttering his wired mind.
“I’ve always tried to be as minimal as possible, using one piece of software and limited amount of synth plugins. Using simplistic stuff is helpful but it’s complicated getting interesting and diverse sounds, so you have to work really hard, and that is fine for songwriting and the kind of music I was doing before, which was much more song-based. Sound design was embellishment as opposed to the core of the music. It’s a way of decluttering my wired mind.”
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Although instrumental based work can be difficult to grasp peoples attention without vocals, IAMX set the mood quite nicely as we open with ‘Little Deaths’. This track is embedded in a lush wave of aggresive breathing and minimalist beats, easily bringing the record to an interesting start. Following this is the ambient sound of’ TickTickTick’. There is a lot of seedy pitch changing with an electronic moody feel to this track, one of the few you could possibly hear in an underground club.
A level of eariness arises on ‘ Trust The Machine’ which definetly builds up an atmosphere of ominous and uneasy expression throughout. Although its not all jagged synths and violent beats. Towards the end we are greeted with ‘ Polar I’ an ambient and somewhat relaxing piece correlated to the rest of the album.
IAMX fans will not be dissapointed with the record however it does feel that vocals are Chris Corner’s strong point. In saying so he is a master of his craft and has managed to create a wonderful record.
After the release of Unfall Chris Corner is planning a new IAMX album for January 2018. You can also find his more visual work in the link below for fellow friend Gary Numans video My Name Is Ruin
Unfall is out now via Caroline/Universal Records. The albums full track listing is as follows…
01. Little Deaths
04. Running point
05. Trust The Machine
06. The Noise Cabinet
07. Cat’s Cradle
09. Polar I.
12. The Disease To Please