Atari Teenage Riot: Is This Hyperreal?

Although there are listenable moments, the band's lack of interest in the actual music makes this a relatively flat offering.

Is This Hyperreal?

Dim Mak

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When you're a digital hard-core protest band, you need a mission. For Atari Teenage Riot, the crosshairs were first focused on Germany's neo-Nazi movements of the early 1990s.

They made it big with thrashers such as Hunt Down the Nazis. Now the enemy is human trafficking, government, the rich, the internet and all things establishment.

And because they're angry, they're into yelling. As with their other albums, most of the lyrics are spoken, er, shouted, above anthemic melodies on screaming synths and guitars. The protest song has been motivating change since before the 1960s, and digital hard-core/electro-punk has been causing vocal injuries since the 1970s.

Atari Teenage Riot merged the genres in the 1990s and although they may have made a career of rallying the troops, 2011 doesn't seem like the year to use a dated and under-evolved genre to do it. Although the melodies and progressive beats are generally listenable, the songs aren't different enough to be distinguished from each other.

Sure, there's a catchy hook here and there, but as a whole work, the band don't seem to have been interested in the music. And although they are obviously inspired, their motivation, unfortunately, didn't translate into an album that could bring allegiance to their ever-evolving mission.

Published: August 10, 2011 04:00 AM

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