The Berzerker - The Reawakening
Berzerker Industries
Industrial Death/Grind
16 songs (59:00)
Release year: 2008
The Berzerker, Berzerker Industries
Reviewed by Goat

As good as my first encounter with The Berzerker, 2002’s Dissimulate (an impulse purchase due to the cool cover art) was, Luke Kenny and co. weren’t content to rest on their laurels, and both 2005’s World Of Lies and last year’s Animosity were excellent albums, experimenting with the band’s sound without changing the base elements – harsh, savage riffs, demonic vocals and inhuman drumming, influenced as much by Gabba pounding as the traditional blastbeat.

The Reawakening (note the cover art – the cyborg dragon from the first albums grew flesh on Animosity and is now clothed in skin, bursting forth from its lair and annihilating all) is the first album to be released on the band’s own Berzerker Industries label. Tired of being paid a pittance for their art, The Berzerker have struck out on their own, taking on even manufacture and distribution of CDs in a way that would have defeated many a lesser band. All power to them! Not only is the packaging for the album neat and professional, but also after a bit of research I discovered that on the exact same day I received the album in England in the post, others in America did too! Considering how unreliable even bands in the same country as you can be – several times I’ve paid British bands for albums and never received a thing, disgracefully – this is fantastic of The Berzerker, and such great service puts more than a few mail order outlets to shame.

As ever, the music is well written, but this time around there seems to be a special emphasis on the Industrial rather than Death/Grind aspects, making for an album that has taken a definite step away from the manic speedgrind of the past. There’s no real cause for alarm – this is still heavier than a brick to the face and even the samples are present and correct – but there is a definite increase in the tempo and variety of beats used, making for an enjoyable listen that’s deeper than first listens would seem. The opening burst of Wisdom And Corruption, for instance, changes tempos frequently, using the percussive elements to drive the songs more than the electronically enhanced guitar riffs. Following track An Unforgotten Force has a discernable chorus and doesn’t get dull once in its five-minute-plus length, whilst if you don’t find the central riff in the war-torn Caught In The Crossfire maddeningly catchy there’s something wrong with you.

From the pure drum n’bass in The Deception to what amounts to drillcore in Your Final Seconds, The Berzerker are clearly experimenting with styles, and the album of twisted blasting that results is as good as if not better than everything done before. Seasoned Electronica enthusiasts are probably shaking their heads now at my mangling of terminology, but then they’re doubtlessly aware of some less obvious aspect that my amateurish ears have missed – worry not, newcomers to the electronic beat, this is anything but hard to enjoy. That even holds for the six remixes included as bonus tracks – unless you’re completely new to the Industrial world you’ll have heard it all before, but they’re still fun to listen to.

That’s what it ultimately all comes down to: The Reawakening is a gloriously fun listen, stretching its wings and roaring defiance at the sky; making it look easy as yet another swarm of feeble humans are incinerated by the brute force emanating within. After all, with thirteen years of experience it’s hard not to expect greatness from The Berzerker; here’s to many more.

Killing Songs :
Wisdom And Corruption, An Unforgotten Force, Caught In The Crossfire, Your Final Seconds, Harvesting A Loved One, Internal Examination, Spare Parts
Goat quoted 84 / 100
Other albums by The Berzerker that we have reviewed:
The Berzerker - World Of Lies reviewed by Kayla and quoted 90 / 100
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