Mirland - Mechanic
In the past year or so, John R. Mirland has become quite noted for his and Claus Larsen of Leaether Strip's synthpop project Am Tierpark. The brighter but emotional two-man band has captivated quite an audience, but lurking inside of John R. Mirland is a darker solo-project that faces the rougher side of minimal techno and dark ambient.
Mirland grew up playing in various metal bands while diving into noise and industrial projects in the earl and mid 90s. He had a hiatus from the music scene for a while to focus on a career as an illustrator and painter. That changed after a while, and 2010 saw the release of Cerebral Reducing Valve which kicked off his creativity once again. Various electronic projects came and went, such as Holm/Mirland, Mechanical Principle, M73, and Owl in the Woods. However, Mirland has always stuck and will most likely stay that way for quite a while.
Mechanic is Mirland's most recent release under his own name and, as stated above, the album takes minimal techno and dark ambient out to lunch with one another. I can't help but feel that there's a bit of a jazz influence somewhere on the album as well, as the chill out track 'Dominance' has that sort of feel going along with it. A majority of the album can also be filed under an experimental belt as tracks such as 'Nebula', 'Red Giant', and at least the first couple minutes of 'Blind' would leave me to believe. That being said, techno also plays a huge part on the album.
Leading right on from the first two minutes of 'Blind', minimal analog techno takes over through the latter half of that song as well as for 'Dominance'. However, 'Dominance' has a very slow burn to it - it's a curious song and one that pokes and provokes. For anyone looking for a casual, futuristic rhythm then I would suggest 'Elite' as that's perhaps the most fun and dance ready song on the album with a moving and softly thumping electronic beat.
While every single song on the album are entirely instrumental, the title track of the album stands apart by being the only vocally led track. Partnered up with Larsen once again, the EBM legend lends his voice to a soft spoken track with piano and analog synths leading the rhythm. I think of this song almost as if it would be played at an open mic night at a dive bar with a shady figure heading the microphone.
MIrland's Mechanic is an odd combination of experimental darkness and despair, while also shining rather bright beams of light every now and again. This might be an album that some will pick and choose from, but I believe there's something to be found for everyone.
Jul 07 2017
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.
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