The group was formed in New Cross, south-east London in late 1981. All unemployed, and with listening tastes ranging from soul to classical music, they searched out whatever they could find to make music with, and for the most part this consisted of scrap metal salvaged from waste ground and derelict factories. The reason had as much to do with lack of money as it had to do with a dislike for conventional rock instruments. Originally, they used bass guitars and other conventional instruments, but these were fairly rapidly dropped as they obtained more industrial percussion, and found that these created a stronger and more consistent sound.
They also, probably later on, gained the rights for some of their music and can been seen listed as copyright holders on some re-issues. Some examples can be seen on the Test Dept. page.
Australian electronic innovators Severed Heads pushed the avant garde whimsy in the 80's with classic dance floor hypnotics such as "Dead Eyes Opened" and "Hot with Fleas". Signed to Nettwerk and touring with such acts as Skinny Puppy and Gary Numan, Severed Heads have a massive discography dating back to 1981, with new vinyl reissues of their groundbreaking early albums arriving last year on vinyl from Medical Records and Dark Entries.
Pop Will Eat Itself
In 1986, the line-up of singer and guitarist Clint Mansell, guitarist and keyboardist Adam Mole, bassist Richard March, and drummer Graham Crabb formed as Wild And Wandering in the English town of Stourbridge. After some months and one e.p. they changed their name to Pop Will Eat Itself (PWEI) and earned attention from the indie scene for their first e.p., The Poppies Say Grrr! on Chapter 22. At the time they played short, fast, slightly psychedelic punk-pop tunes and went on with that for three more e.p.'s before starting to incorporate house and hip hop beats and samples on Beaver Patrol. By autumn 1987 PWEI released their first album, Box Frenzy, with some tunes leaning towards new wave, some towards hip hop and acid house. A drum machine called Dr. Nightmare was installed and Graham Crabb took the second microphone.
After the 12" Def.Con.One PWEI signed a deal with RCA and released Can U Dig It? in 1989, which would be the first of 12 PWEI singles going UK top 40. In the same year their seminal second album This Is The Day...This Is The Hour...This Is This! appeared to public and critical acclaim for its witty fusion of rock and electronic music.
PWEI opted for an even more electronic, slightly darker and moodier approach on Cure For Sanity, their third album, which appeared in 1990 alongside PWEI's alternative soccer world cup theme, Touched By The Hand Of Cicciolina, a fusion of dub and acid house.
Electronics took a backseat on 1992's The Looks Or The Lifestyle, when Fuzz Townshend was brought in as a drummer. PWEI reinvented themselves as grungey groovers and released Get The Girl! Kill The Baddies! as their highlight single. PWEI had been sacked by RCA at the time the single went number 9 in the UK in early 1993.
The band signed with Infectious in the UK and Nothing in the US and released R.S.V.P., Ich Bin Ein Auslander, and Everything's Cool as singles in 1993 and 1994. The tunes displayed a development from where they had left towards dark industrial rock. The mixture on their fifth album Dos Dedos Mis Amigos was received well and won the band many new fans.
Nonetheless, the band only released the remix album Two Fingers My Friends after that and collapsed upon the departure of Graham Crabb in 1996. Crabb released an album as Golden Claw Musics, Richard March went on to form Bentley Rhythm Ace, Fuzz Townshend went solo, and Clint Mansell has done film soundtracks. In 2005, a reunion tour and new songs were announced, but the reformation fizzled out by the end of the year.
In 2010, in the wake of the dissolution of Vile Evils, Graham Crabb announced his intention to reconstitute PWEI. By 2011, Crabb had recruited new band members, and PWEI released a new album, New Noise Designed By A Sadist, and went on tour.
Paul Barker’s Min-Dub Soundsystem
Paul Barker (born February 8, 1959 in Palo Alto, California), also referred to as Hermes Pan, is the former bass guitarist, producer and engineer of the industrial metal band Ministry from 1986 to 2004. Prior to Ministry, Barker provided bass for the Seattle No Wave ensemble The Blackouts alongside future Ministry drummer William Rieflin and his brother, one-time Ministry touring keyboardist/saxophonist Roland Barker, from 1979 until 1985. Beginning as touring bassist for Ministry's 1986 Twitch tour, Barker collaborated with frontman Al Jourgensen and collectively released The Land Of Rape And Honey in 1988. Although many musicians briefly contributed to Ministry in the nearly two decade period after Barker joined the band, he and Jourgensen were the only continuous members. The dynamics between these two different personalities came to shape Ministry's sound, along with a number of side-projects which they were involved in together. Barker left the band in 2004 for personal reasons.
Since leaving Ministry, Barker has spent his time recording new material, producing such acts as I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness and collaborating with artists such as Stayte (on their 2007 Cognitive Dissonance (The Art Of Lying To Yourself) EP). He joined USSA with Duane Denison (Tomahawk (6), ex-The Jesus Lizard) as bassist. The first album from his solo project Flowering Blight entitled The Perfect Pair, was released on November 19, 2008 via the official website.
Barker released Fix on April 10, 2012. This album features guests such as Chris Connelly, Nivek Ogre, Taylor Momsen, Puscifer, Alexis S.F. Marshall, Thee Joshua Bradford III, and Devix Szell.
Paul is also one of the founders of Malekko Heavy Industry Corporation, a manufacturer of synthesizer modules and guitar effect pedals.
Paul has played live with Puscifer. He is currently touring with the Revolting Cocks (originally The Cocks) with Chris Connelly, Richard 23 and (sometimes) Luc Van Acker.
Kælan Mikla is a three-piece punk/no-wave band from Reykjavík slowly getting darker and deeper with new waves and more instruments. The band consists of three girls who perform their own poetry and have been described as an avant-garde, fresh breeze into the Icelandic music scene in the past two years. The band was formed after winning first place in a poetry slam held by the city library in January 2013. They have since then played multiple festivals as well as just finishing a small europe tour. Kælan Mikla are known for their dark melancholic sound, most of the songs consisting only of heavy bass, drums and screams with some softer, melodic synth parts in-between. The bands lyrics focus on inner confusion and their intimidating stage performance, often including performance art of some sort, is bound to leave the crowd in a melancholic trance.
The powerfully dark and depressing brainchild of Chris Rivera, crafted and honed by intense electronics and pounding percussions. Joined by Krz Souls and Brendin Ross, the elements of pain, angst and a raw form of the industrial genre band together to make the sound that is INVA//ID
Sex Cells DJs (Danny Lethal & Matt Pernicano)