Tohuvabohu (MS-20 Mix by Combichrist)
Looking for Strange (Super Strange Mix by Die Krupps)
Superpower (Buttfunk Mix by Käpt'n K.)
Headcase (Hallowe'en Mix by Jules Hodgson)
Tohuvabohu (Ex Nihilo Mix by Angelspit)
I Am What I Am (The One and Only Mix by Steve White)
Looking for Strange (All Strung Up Mix by Velox Music)
Saft und Kraft (Saft und Crack Mix by DJ? Acucrack)
Not in My Name (Check Yourself Mix by 16volt)
Headcase (Fix Mix by Angelspit)
Spit or Swallow (Electric Stomp Mix by Velox Music)
You're No Good (Zomb'd Out Mix by Zombie Girl)
RELATED REGEN LINKS
Metropolis Records / KMFDM Records
Posted: Friday, February 22, 2008
By: Ilker Yücel
KMFDM's first full-length remix album presents an aggressive and danceable array that serves to make the Ultra Heavy Beat even stronger!
Remix albums, regardless of the band's stature, tend to be very hit or miss with hopefully several good tracks offset by those that simply are not up to par. It can be argued that a good remix is one that incorporates the remixer's sound and style into a song while staying faithful to the spirit of the original. KMFDM have always understood this, and as the Ultra Heavy Beat begins its 24th year, they bring us their first full-length remix album as a companion to their most recent release, Tohuvabohu. Brimborium - a German word that loosely translates to "something with no meaning or value," which is somewhat of a pun on the band's name while also being humorously ironic - presents 13 tracks spanning over 73 minutes; longer than any of KMFDM's regular albums. Featuring a wide range of mixes from several renowned names in the industrial/electro scene, most of which have toured with the band, Brimborium is notable for its bridging the gap between the old and the new as veterans of the scene stand alongside the newer generation on what is one of KMFDM's most varied sets ever.
Combichrist, fresh from their opening slot on the Hau Ruck Zuck tour, kick off the proceedings with their MS-20 mix of "Tohuvabohu," as a pounding EBM beat marches beneath rubbery synth lines and skittering guitars as Sascha Konietzko's authoritative voice permeates throughout. Angelspit's Ex Nihilo mix of the same song, previously available as a bonus MP3 on the KMFDM store, features some resonating vocoder treatments amid caustic synths, while their take on "Headcase" slows the beat down to a sparse arrangement of stomps and claps, reminiscent of KMFDM's earlier fascination with Gary Glitter (i.e. "More and Faster" and "Go to Hell"). Velox Music also make a dual appearance with their remixes of "Spit or Swallow" and "Looking for Strange," both of which run dangerously close to disco territory, but still retain enough of the original songs' characters so that they fit in with the rest of the bunch, and Zombie Girl's mix of "You're No Good" from Hau Ruck finally finds a home on Brimborium.
Fellow industrial rockers 16volt shake up the dance floor with the Check Yourself mix of "Not in My Name" as Eric Powell infuses the song with some smarmy synth textures that would not be out of place on an electroclash compilation, while still possessing stabs of chunky guitar to keep the track grounded in industrial rock. Ever the innovators, DJ? Acucrack transpose the thrash metal rage of "Saft und Kraft" into a high speed breakbeat-laden jungle assault, while Die Krupps pummel out their Super Strange mix of "Looking for Strange" with thumping EBM beats that are rather typical of their formula, although they do well to complement the song's inherently danceable nature. And then there are the remixes by KMFDM themselves, as Käpt'n K. brings the (Butt)funk with "Superpower," full of the original's groovy beats and bass lines that recall the best of KMFDM's early '90s output. Jules Hodgson's Hallowe'en mix of "Headcase" slows the beat down but keeps the volume high with a brutal onslaught of guitars, while Steve White's One and Only mix of "I Am What I Am" seems reminiscent of his early work with Pig, replacing the original's aggression for ambient layers of strings and acoustic guitar.
Closing the album out is "What We Do for You;" over nine minutes of clips from the KMFDM fan phone in which people phoned in their thoughts and musings on what KMFDM does for them. While certain clips were chosen for the original version of "Superpower," this compilation of various other recordings does well to add to the humor and serves as a testament to KMFDM's appeal that has lasted them for 24 years. While Tohuvabohu was an assorted mix that was arguably the band's most diverse work since the early '90s, Brimborium is the perfect complement with an equally eclectic collection of remixes, all of which serve to enrich KMFDM's music and make the Ultra Heavy Beat all the more powerful.