Observe & Control – Utopia – Review

observeandcontrol200Observe & Control

Utopia (Archetype Multimedia)
by Scott Hefflon

The first release by another band on Regenerator’s label, Archetype Media, and it’s a winner. From Tel-Aviv, Israel, founded by Tom Cohen (aka Gnuth), originally under the name Xanthippe, its current moniker inspired by French philosopher Foucault. Observe & Control have performed with Apoptygma Berserk and Das Ich, and draw influence from every nook & cranny of electronic music, from Skinny Puppy’s more melodic moments to Erasure on a Meth bender. Part futurepop, part melodic EBM, there are hard-charging moments with cartwheeling keyboard riffs, and there are pounding beats with real guitar and tender or bold vocals (not distorted beyond humanity, but often “flavored” with technology), but always peppy and danceable, no self-indulgent atonal tantrums, art for art’s sake, and no metalcore one-note yowling.