Various Artists, All My Dead Friends

J. Edward Keyes

By J. Edward Keyes

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
You’ll have to pry the metal from their cold, meaty hands.

The Cold Meat Industry label requires a bit of weeding to get to the good stuff, but this compilation is a perfect place to start. It's got a bit of everything the label does well: death-rattle noise, quivering darkwave and genuinely creepy ambient. There's a kind of willing suspension of disbelief required to fully appreciate these records: you have to kind of acknowledge and play along with the fact that their creators are trying to creep you out, and in turn you have to allow yourself to be creeped out. Once you've done this, though, the rewards are many — as long as you bypass some of the more flowery GothTM moments. The whispering that runs through "Rite of Spring" sounds like it's bleeding over from the Other Side, bad news from the beyond set against eerie sonic vapors. Letum's "Dead Will Be My Friend" is four minutes of solid rumble, growing more eerie and more ominous until it finally opens up into layers of slowed-down synths. Perfect music for the encroaching fall, the season in which everything dies.