Justin Symbol - Voidhead
Industrial Rock Justin Symbol is one of the latest figures in the New York underground scene, merging industrial rock with more electronic elements to come to the forefront of many music enthusiasts' minds. Featuring Symbol as the lead singer, with Will E. Vil as the live drummer and Kevin Vonesper as bassist, the band also comes hand in hand with co-founding Marilyn Manson guitarist Daisy Berkowitz.

The band prides itself as being controversial for their subject matter in music, video, and live performance, but being controversial in the underground is absolutely nothing new. But, the proclaimed King of Negativity has released his debut album back in October of 2014 titled Voidhead. Featuring ten tracks that just near the half hour mark, Justin Symbol has taken the time to out a decent first release.

Where the band's strength lies is with their attention to both putting out club-esque beats mixed with heavier rock elements. Take, for example, the first and title track Voidhead. During the chorus, we're fed more guitar driven segments with a sort of shouting behind it all. However, during the other segments of the song, a more standard electronic beat flows with underlying bass.

Now, one thing I do want to point out is that though Berkowitz is kind of flaunted in many of the press releases that I have read, his performance comes in on three of the ten songs on the album, and those would be Control, Purgatory, and Golden Shower. And, not shocking at all, these songs do sound better than many of the others that were presented on the album, which is a damned great thing; his experience is able to drive the songs on the album up a notch. It's a compliment to both Berkowitz and the band's collaboration with him.

I will take the time to point out the instrumental track The Fear, as it is just completely moody and somewhat horror-inspired yet cartoonish; I could see it easily being used in a twisted three-ring circus. And, I would also like to point out one of my favorite tracks on the album, one of the more laid back ones, Grey Snow. Focusing a lot on small electronic bleeps and a bass line that follows throughout with vocals to match the quiet tone of the song, it was quite lovely.

But, that's also not to say that I didn't find some faults within this release, as well. Songs such as Black Friday, as much as I enjoyed the lyrical content and guitar driven parts, fell flat when the guitars left and the electronics stayed. It wasn't terrible, but it made me uninterested with the song and made me want to move onto the next one.

These guys are doing something formidable, I'll attest to that, but I will be the one to say that I don't think they've perfected their formula by far. Fusing dancey electronics with rock tones can be a tough cookie at times, but they pull it off well, and with further fine tuning down the road and experience that will no doubt be gained throughout their career, I can see Justin Symbol doing very well for themselves later on down the line.

Right now, Voidhead is available for purchase, and the first hundred copies of the album do come with a limited edition Voidhead poster. So, order before that offer goes away.
3
Brutal Resonance

Justin Symbol - Voidhead

6.0
"Alright"
N/A
Electroracle
Spotify
Released off label 2014
Justin Symbol is one of the latest figures in the New York underground scene, merging industrial rock with more electronic elements to come to the forefront of many music enthusiasts' minds. Featuring Symbol as the lead singer, with Will E. Vil as the live drummer and Kevin Vonesper as bassist, the band also comes hand in hand with co-founding Marilyn Manson guitarist Daisy Berkowitz.

The band prides itself as being controversial for their subject matter in music, video, and live performance, but being controversial in the underground is absolutely nothing new. But, the proclaimed King of Negativity has released his debut album back in October of 2014 titled Voidhead. Featuring ten tracks that just near the half hour mark, Justin Symbol has taken the time to out a decent first release.

Where the band's strength lies is with their attention to both putting out club-esque beats mixed with heavier rock elements. Take, for example, the first and title track Voidhead. During the chorus, we're fed more guitar driven segments with a sort of shouting behind it all. However, during the other segments of the song, a more standard electronic beat flows with underlying bass.

Now, one thing I do want to point out is that though Berkowitz is kind of flaunted in many of the press releases that I have read, his performance comes in on three of the ten songs on the album, and those would be Control, Purgatory, and Golden Shower. And, not shocking at all, these songs do sound better than many of the others that were presented on the album, which is a damned great thing; his experience is able to drive the songs on the album up a notch. It's a compliment to both Berkowitz and the band's collaboration with him.

I will take the time to point out the instrumental track The Fear, as it is just completely moody and somewhat horror-inspired yet cartoonish; I could see it easily being used in a twisted three-ring circus. And, I would also like to point out one of my favorite tracks on the album, one of the more laid back ones, Grey Snow. Focusing a lot on small electronic bleeps and a bass line that follows throughout with vocals to match the quiet tone of the song, it was quite lovely.

But, that's also not to say that I didn't find some faults within this release, as well. Songs such as Black Friday, as much as I enjoyed the lyrical content and guitar driven parts, fell flat when the guitars left and the electronics stayed. It wasn't terrible, but it made me uninterested with the song and made me want to move onto the next one.

These guys are doing something formidable, I'll attest to that, but I will be the one to say that I don't think they've perfected their formula by far. Fusing dancey electronics with rock tones can be a tough cookie at times, but they pull it off well, and with further fine tuning down the road and experience that will no doubt be gained throughout their career, I can see Justin Symbol doing very well for themselves later on down the line.

Right now, Voidhead is available for purchase, and the first hundred copies of the album do come with a limited edition Voidhead poster. So, order before that offer goes away. Jan 21 2015

Off label

Official relesae released by the artist themselves without the backing of a label.

Steven Gullotta

info@brutalresonance.com
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.

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