FFO: Big Black and The Faint. Not recommended if you’re allergic to drum machines.
When we last left Futuristic Death Tank, they were blowing the damn doors off the place with a 10-minute long demo of blistering video game-themed cybergrind. They’re back with a brand new LP that changes the script. Partitioning the Empty Drive abandons the guitars and grind of The Last Boss and instead embraces a hard-edged electronic sound. This time around, there’s a lot less Agoraphobic Nosebleed worship, and far more nods to Big Black.
Partitioning the Empty Drive‘s first track, “B.O.B. (Alien Robot Man)”, feels like a natural progression from The Last Boss into the noise rock aesthetic of this record. “Chemical Labotomy” carves out a twisted bass riff that drives the song as the farfisa organ from ? and the Mysterians “96 Tears” pounds away behind the giant, distorted drum machine. “I Know What You’re Doing” is a fucked up take on Dionne Farris’ 1994 hit of the same name. I love it and you should too. The album’s best track, “Divorce Wave”, immediately recalls The Faint and Crystal Castles with dark pop immediacy, the catchy keyboard melodies nestled tightly between crushing guitars and bass. “Soliders in Gas Masks” brings some meatspace drums to the forefront by breaking off the quantization grid for some non-4/4 grooves.
Partitioning the Empty Drive is the most surprising thing I’ve received in my email in quite a while. I went in expecting grind and instead got something resembling electropunk. I’ve been jamming it heavily since getting it and I expect that adventurous listeners will too. The entire record is name-your-own-price on Bandcamp. Pick it up now, then follow Futuristic Death Tank on Facebook and tell ’em the Toilet sez, “mmmm, I like your style.”