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  Metropolis Records  
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I enjoy industrial music, with its harsh vocals, ominous overtones, and viscous beats. Sometimes i feel that it is a good juxtaposition to the shiny happiness of pop music, and as such helps to keep me a little grounded. However, I know that many people find this music to be "too much", and that's fine. Just be forewarned that Undeveloped is the fourth record by Skinny Puppy founder Nivek Ogre's OhGr project. He is not reinventing himself as a "sunshine and kittens" folk singer, this is dark music. If you know you don't care for this kind of thing, save yourself some time and move on.

Okay, that said, i really like this record. In fact, i have really enjoyed all four of the OhGr albums, as well as this century's Skinny Puppy records. I have to admit that, towards the end of their first incarnation, SP were losing me. But now, Ogre in particular seems to have his act together and the music has been good.

Undeveloped is another record of dark, effected vocals, soaring synths, and angry drum machines. There are strange vocal loops that create eerie intermissions between the actual songs. The record seems to ebb and flow, swelling into intense, driving songs, and then mellowing out into odd interludes. It makes for interesting listening.

There are many tunes here that fans of Skinny Puppy and Mr. Ogre will enjoy. I think the real standout is ScrewMe, which is built out of a minimal drum beat, a bouncy keyboard riff, and Ogre's effected growl. The beat is positively poppy. Yes, you read that right, poppy. From Nivek Ogre. Yes, the guy from Skinny Puppy. Why isn't this a big hit? The melody is so fun, and Ogre singing, "Screw me / I liiiiiike it!" over and over makes for a surprisingly fun listen. This is a great song for SP fans to play for their non-fan friends.

As ScrewMe ends, a vaguely similar tune fades in, Bellow. Ogre sings lightly here, almost sounding like Edward Ka-Spel of Legendary Pink Dots. This vocal line is over a hi-hat beat and a warbling, toe-tapping synth line. If there were a different voice here, say a young girl, this could be radio fodder in this country... I think he even uses some auto-tune like effects on his voice. And as you listen to this happy little tune, you realize it is a love song. Yes, a love song, by Ogre. And it's really good. I don't know what to make of this world anymore... I mean, a happy love song, by Ogre? If Skinny Puppy have ballads on their next record, i am going on a murderous rampage. Just warning you now.

I also really like 101, which starts the album off with a synthetic thudding and rumbling bass over a tinkling drone. Ogre's voice is a barely rhythmic growling, with many other voices behind him, yelling along on the chorus chanting, "Who do i have to fuck?" over and over. But it is the bass that makes this, a real deep groove that propels the song along.

Then we have Hollow, which is a great synth pop dance tune with 1980s keyboards, while Animist seems more like a Technique-era New Order dance tune. Both are really groovy and fun.

And that is how i describe this album: it is fun. Sure, it's industrial music, dominated by synths and distorted voices, but it moves along at a bouncy pace, hitting all the tropes while bringing in some of the joy of movement that dance music promises.

And what do you get when you combine dance music, synths, and the darkness inherent in industrial? This album really feels like a follow-up to FSOL's epic Dead Cities record. Especially the song Typer, which logically fits in between We Have Explosive and Everyone in the World Is Doing Something Without Me. However, many of the little interludes have an FSOL feel to them.

So i really like this. This record has been the soundtrack to a lot of my summer. Ogre is continuing to make good music, and i continue to listen.

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