Kilted Farmer Koncerts and Mill City Nights present…
Skinny Puppy and Front Line Assembly
Eye vs Spy Tour 2014
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Doors 8:00 pm
$30 in advance / $35 at the door
Details at millcitynights.com
On sale Friday, July 25, 2014 at 10:00 AM CDT
Online at axs.com
In person at Mill City Nights box office
Videos and bios below the fold…
Skinny Puppy formed in 1982 from the partnership of cEvin Key (Kevin Crompton) and Nivek Ogre (Kevin Ogilvie) in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Key was dissatisfied with the pop direction of his then-current band Images in Vogue and began Skinny Puppy with the intention of doing something more raw and experimental. The duo recorded their first self-released cassette Back & Forth in 1984, with help from Dave “Rave” Ogilvie. This was the beginning of a long partnership between Skinny Puppy and Rave, who would serve as their producer until 1993, again in 1995, and was occasionally listed as a member of the band in album liner notes. Back & Forth drew the attention of Vancouver startup label Nettwerk, who signed the band later that year.
The dark electro-pop styles of the debut EP, Remission, and first album Bites the following year, earned the band a fervent fan base. This era saw the creation of such now-immortal underground hits as “Assimilate”, “Smothered Hope”, “The Choke”, “Dead Lines”, “Last Call”, and “Far Too Frail”.
Dwayne Goettel, who played synthesizers and samplers, joined Skinny Puppy in 1986. Classically trained as a pianist/keyboardist, Goettel had previously worked with the synth pop band Psyche, among others.
Their audience expanded with a distribution deal with Capitol Records/EMI, while Play It Again Sam issued a number of their releases in Europe. Their production values continued to improve with the addition of Goettel on Mind: The Perpetual Intercourse in 1986 and Cleanse Fold and Manipulate in the year that followed. “Dig It”, “Addiction”, “Chainsaw”, “Stairs and Flowers”, and “Deep Down Trauma Hounds” are prominent songs from this period.
Skinny Puppy toured for three years in North America and Europe; a live performance at Toronto’s Concert Hall in 1987 was released on VHS in 1989 and CD in 1991 as Ain’t It Dead Yet?
Over time, the band became outspoken advocates for animal rights, and used the European Head Trauma tour and North American VIVIsectVI tour to draw attention to the issue. The title of the album, VIVIsectVI, released in 1988, was a pun intended to associate vivisection with Satanism (i.e. the “666 sect”). The album’s lyrics dealt with criticism of pollution, chemical warfare, deforestation, rape, cocaine addiction, and the promotion of sexual abstinence to stop the spread of AIDS/HIV. The lead track “Dogshit” was released as a single in 1988 under the name “Censor” (due to censorship issues, radio stations urged the band to change its name for radio airplay) while the single “Testure” (which denounced the vivisection of animals for research purposes) reached No. 19 on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in 1989. A music video was produced for “Testure” featuring footage of a man being tortured by monstrous-looking surgeons, augmented with clips from The Plague Dogs and Unnecessary Fuss, and included a statement denouncing vivisection. Key and Ogre were arrested for “disorderly conduct” at a 1988 concert in Cincinnati, Ohio after an audience member, believing the stuffed animal Ogre was “vivisecting” to be a real dog, called the police.
During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the band members also worked on various side projects. Key and Goettel were involved with The Tear Garden (a collaboration with The Legendary Pink Dots), Doubting Thomas (an outlet for their non-Skinny Puppy instrumentals), and the rock band Hilt. Ogre struck up a friendship with Ministry’s Al Jourgensen and joined Ministry and some of its side projects on their live tours. For Skinny Puppy’s fifth album, Rabies, released in 1989, Jourgensen joined Rave as producer.
Their next album, Too Dark Park, was released in 1990. The album is built on the harsh electronic rock of previous albums, yielding the singles “Tormentor” and “Spasmolytic”. Environmental degradation was a major theme on songs such as “Nature’s Revenge” and “Shore Lined Poison” while layers of background noise grew to a crescendo on the album’s closer “Reclamation”.
The album that followed two years later, Last Rights, pushed the dark noise of Too Dark Park further into experimental territory. In 1992 the single “Inquisition” was released. Another single, “Love In Vein”, was made but not released until some of the remix and b-side material intended for it appeared on Brap: Back and Forth Series 3 & 4 in 1996. The “Killing Game” video and tour backing film were directed by William Morrison.
Ogre, Key, and Goettel signed a contract with American Recordings and moved to Malibu, California in 1993 to record The Process, a concept album inspired by 1960s cult The Process Church of The Final Judgment, with Roli Mosimann producing. Artistic and personal differences caused Ogre to leave Skinny Puppy in June 1995. Goettel was found dead of a heroin overdose in his parents’ home two months later. The Process was eventually completed with Rave, released in 1996, and dedicated to the memory of Goettel. It was an overall stylistic departure from their previous albums, prominently featuring untreated vocals, guitar, and more accessible song structures. The liner notes that accompanied the CD included thank-yous to “Electronic Music Lovers” and “Puppy People” followed by the words “The End” in bold type.
Several collections were released while Skinny Puppy was dormant, including Brap: Back and Forth Series 3 & 4 in 1996 and The Singles Collect and B-Sides Collect in 1999. Nettwerk commissioned a remix album in 1998; titled remix dystemper, it featured classic Skinny Puppy tracks re-worked by a diverse range of artists, including IDM pioneers Autechre, alt-metal band Deftones, rapper/hip hop producer Guru and Industrial mainstay KMFDM. Ogre and Mark Walk also took part, contributing a breakcore remix of “Dig It” and an updated version of Remission’s “Smothered Hope” with new vocals by Ogre.
In 2000, Ogre and Key reunited and performed live as Skinny Puppy for the first time since 1992 at the Doomsday Festival in Dresden. The live album Doomsday: Back and Forth Series 5: Live in Dresden was released in 2001. Key joined ohGr on drums for its 2001 tour, while Ogre appeared on the track “Frozen Sky” on Key’s 2001 album The Ghost of Each Room. The first new Skinny Puppy track in several years, “Optimissed”, appeared on the Underworld soundtrack in 2003. Ogre, Key, Mark Walk and various guests, including Danny Carey of Tool and Wayne Static of Static-X, recorded the band’s ninth studio album, The Greater Wrong of the Right, released in 2004 on Synthetic Symphony, a sub-label of SPV, their European distributor since the mid-1990s. The new Skinny Puppy sound was in a similar vein as The Process, with a somewhat more rock-oriented style. Skinny Puppy toured North America and Europe in support of the album in 2004. Skinny Puppy toured Europe again in 2005, and returned to the studio to complete their next album, Mythmaker, which was released in January 2007.
According to a news posting on the official Skinny Puppy website, the band’s next studio album was originally slated for release in October 2009, but the release of this album was delayed due to insolvency issues with the SPV label (thus leading to Ogre naming the 2009 tour the “In Solvent See” tour). These issues were not expected to be resolved until the end of 2009. However, the “In Solvent See” Tour took place as planned.
In May 2011, Skinny Puppy announced that they finished recording a new album titled HanDover, which was released in October of 2011.
A live album, titled Bootlegged, Broke, and In Solvent Seas and recorded on the band’s 2010 European tour, was released on June 12, 2012 by Metropolis Records.
2013 Sees Skinny Puppy release Weapon.
In its nearly three decades of existence, Skinny Puppy has established itself as a groundbreaking innovative voice in the world of electronic music. Fearless in both its musical experimentation and voicing a stance on the issues of our times, the new album, Weapon, is no exception. This stunning new album stands as a commentary on that which it is named after, the Weapon, or more specifically, to the concurrent glorification of the gun culture and simultaneous horror at the devastation the gun can cause. Given this view, the pop undertones of the albums opening “wornin” and the compelling counterpoint of the vocals and lyrics seem to reflect our mass media homogenization of an instrument of death into an entertainment centerpiece. “illisiT” could then be focusing on the authoritarian control applied to us under the guise of protecting us from the criminal element. Though possibly it is from the view of the average citizen, arming themselves against the threat of each other. The more it is analyzed, the more it could be pondered on varying levels. Perhaps the classic Skinny Puppy sounds evident in the song “solvent” are a nod to not only the past, but to a bleak Orwellian future, cycle of the weapon leads only to power in the hands of those who have no fear of using it. Are we facing a 1984 dystopia filtered through a Kafkaesque lens? A world where the illusion of power given to the private citizen afforded ownership of a weapon distracts them from the Big Brother drones that watch overhead? Could the weapon be the gun, or the one who wields it? Is it in creating an arms race among the populace, or does it lie in the resulting authoritarian control given to those who are charged with protecting us from ourselves? Is it the power to profit from the cycle? Is it the singular act of speaking against the conditioning of our thoughts and actions? As always, Skinny Puppy has created a piece of art, designed to confront, to challenge, and to make the listener think.
Front Line Assembly
Front Line Assembly is the primary focus of Vancouver-based musician Bill Leeb. A founding member of Skinny Puppy, Leeb moved on to form FLA in 1986 with Michael Balch, releasing some cassettes (since released as Total Terror I & II) which paved the way for their 1987 releases: The Initial Command, State of Mind, and Corrosion. In late 1988, they recorded the mini-LP Disorder, since combined with Corrosion and released as Corroded Disorder. Their 1989 release, Gashed Senses and Crossfire, further cemented their popularity in the industrial scene, and prompted their first world tour. By 1990, Balch had departed and Rhys Fulber rounded out the duo, releasingCaustic Grip. But it was two years later when the duo released what for many has become the genre’s crowning moment, the classic album Tactical Neural Implant, which to this day still defines the best of industrial music.
FLA enraged many of their fans in 1994 when they began to experiment with their established electronic-only sound. Millenium, with its heavy doses of live and sampled metal guitars, dared its audience to grow and expand with the band beyond industrial’s perceived barriers. Front Line stepped to the firing line again in 1995 with Hard Wired, which reflected both a return to form and a continued embracing of the guitar. Hard Wired not only picked up where Implant left off, it improved on the sound by adding in elements of all of their side projects. A fall European tour was recorded for the 1996 release Live Wired, their first concert CD ever. Also in 1996, Front Line Assembly followed up Hard Wired with two CD singles, “Circuitry” and “Plasticity”, and toured North America with Numb and Die Krupps.
1997 saw the first realignment of Front Line Assembly since 1990, with the departure of Rhys Fulber and the addition of Chris Peterson to the ranks. Front Line’s 1998 album, FLAvor of the Weak, featured the band’s first flirtation with electronica. Re-Wind, a twin CD of remixes, followed later that year. The duo then released Implodein 1999, and Epitaph in 2001. Epitaph exhibited building intros, trancy synth lines, pulsing beats, and solid melodies, which proved to be contagious anthems for a new future of industrial music.
After the 2001 release of Epitaph, another changing of the FLA “guard” occurred: Chris Peterson left, and original member, Rhys Fulber (Fear Factory, Conjour One) returned. The newly charged Front Line Assembly delivered the highly anticipated Maniacal single in late 2003. The successful single laid the ground work for the 2004 albumCivilization, and Vanished EP which featured three unreleased tracks.
Then finally in 2005 came the event that everyone was waiting for, a Front Line Assembly fusion. Bill Leeb, Rhys Fulber, and Chris Peterson with new members Jeremy Inkel, Adrian White, and Jarod Slingerland began working on the 2006 album, Artificial Soldier. The newly re-formed line-up managed to create an album that no only lived up to the expectations of Front Line Assembly fans, but surpassed them. Heavy pounding beats, atmospheric strings, percolating melodies, dynamic synths and Bill Leeb’s trademark vocals couldn’t be fused together any tighter if you tried to do it at an atomic level. As if all of those factors weren’t enough, two guest vocalists appear on Artificial Soldier – Eskil Simonsson from Covenant (on “The Storm”) and Jean-Luc De Meyer from Front 242 (on “Future Fail”)! After the release of the album, the band embarked on a successful world tour, and released the remix album Fallout one year later.
Throughout the years, FLA has seen many line-up changes. Bill Leeb remains the constant behind the band. For 2010, a new line-up has emerged featuring Jeremy Inkel, Chris Peterson on programming duties, and Jared Slingerland on Guitars, and FLA has been joined by Three Inches of Blood guitarist Justin Hagberg, and guest keyboardist Craig Huxtable of Landscape Body Machine.
The result of this reinvigorated lineup is the all new album Improvised. Electronic. Device. As well as the Shifting Through The Lens single. The new songs demonstrate that FLA has not lost its edge over the past almost two and a half decades. And as if Front Line Assembly’s legacy and namesake alone weren’t enough for the album, Al Jougensen from Ministry contributes his vocals to the song “Stupidity.”
Bill’s work can also be heard on a wide number of side projects, including Noise Unit, Delerium, InterMix, Cyberaktif, Equinox, and Synaesthesia. Bill has also contributed music to the popular video game, Quake 3 – The Arena.
Haujobb are part of the newest wave of electronic dance acts to come storming out of Europe. Along with such other notables as :wumpscut: and VNV Nation, Haujobb are bringing, if possible, an even newer surge of adrenaline to a genre that already seems expanding to burst.
Haujobb formed as a trio in 1993 in Germany, with B. Junemann being the third member to the current duo of Dejan Samardzic and Daniel Myer. Their first release was on cassette only, the now hopelessly out of print Drift Wheeler. This embryonic issue brought them to the attention of Off Beat records, who released their first CD, Homes and Gardens, later that same year. Haujobb’s first German tour occurred in 1994, along with the American release of Homes and Gardens and their first single, Eye Over You.
In 1995, Haujobb attained its current configuration with the departure of B. Junemann. The duo went on to release their second CD, Freeze Frame Reality, and began doing remixes for other bands, including Front Line Assembly and Download. The Frames CD was released, which featured both new material and a number of remixes done by such luminaries as cEvin Key of Skinny Puppy/Download, Adi Newton of Clock DVA, and Mentallo and the Fixer. In the midst of all this activity, a second tour of Germany was successfully launched.
During 1996 the band took part in The Remix Wars Part 1 – :wumpscut: vs. Haujobb, in which each band remixed several tracks from each other’s repertoire. It also saw their first full European tour, as well as their debut on America’s Metropolis Records, with the highly successful Cleaned Visions single and their drum and bass influenced full length CD, Solutions for a Small Planet. In 1997 came the release of their double EP, Matrix, with one disc of new and remixed electronica material and one disc of samples, while 1998 saw the release of two side projects, Newt and Cleen; as well as the release of the single Less. The second Cleen product, Second Path, with the Haujobb electronica CD, Ninety-nine, both hit the street in early 1999. The remixes from that album, Ninety-nine Remixes, was released in late 1999.
The long awaited return of the architects of sound, Haujobb has finally occurred. Polarity marks the end of a two year hiatus for Haujobb, who take this release to the edge of electronic extremes and beyond. Quite possibly their best album ever, Polarity is packed with electro break beats, ambient structures, and tweaked intricacies that deliver a wide spectrum of sound to fill the quietest void or largest chasm. Embark on a kaleidoscopic journey as Haujobb lead you between extremes of Polarity.
After releasing the highly anticipated Polarity album in 2001, Haujobb returned eight months later with yet another new single, “Penetration”. The single gave great incite into what to expect from the new album, Vertical Theory. As Daniel Myer, mastermind behind Haujobb, described the album “a little trance, a little EBM, a little industrial, a little ambient, and a little bit dance, but with that Haujobb ‘feel’.”
Almost two years after the release of the album Vertical Theory, Haujobb returned with an album of remixed and reinvented tracks. Highly sought after for their legendary remixes, Haujobb now has the favor returned to them by their friends including well known acts such as Glis, Seabound, and This Morn’ Omina. In addition, Vertical Mixes contained two new tracks and mixes from Haujobb themselves.
In February 2009, Metropolis Records released the out of print Freeze Frame Reality as a digital only release. Frames-The Remix Album was digitally released the following May.
Los Angeles Duo Youth Code are raw, punishing, industrious electronics built from the seeds of hardcore and early Wax Trax. Ryan William George and Sara Taylor blend chaos with catchy dance undertones to create a sonic fury paralleled to none. Formed in 2012, Using all hardware to perform, Youth Code have already proven their path with being the first band outside of Psychic TV to be put out by PTV’s own label ” Angry Love Productions ” as well as a full length LP on the flawless Dais Records roster. On Tour Now!