If you want your techno to sound like Ancient Methods trapped inside an oil drum, Talker has just the thing. The Chicago duo’s new EP is three tracks of heavy metal without the guitars or riffs – an industrial assembly line of sheet metal battered and scraped into shape with nano-scale precision.
Battle Standards follows Karl Meier and Jonathan Krohn’s debut LP Hari, a monumental slab of intensely controlled brutalism, with these new tracks following the propulsive thud of Frame Capture and Anthony on Hari.
Opener Battle Standard sets the tone from the first Quoth-like kick and rusted rattling percussion, with caustic delays and a sickening hum that sounds like Godflesh tuning up.
(Gold) Standard has one particular pile driver drum hit that jolts every time over its five minutes, but it’s got the most discernible ‘melody’ of the three, albeit a dark ambient drone underneath it all, one of AFX’s favourite mind tricks.
Closer Snub Nose is a bit of a breather, a looser-limbed workout with an electro beat pattern that would slot into some 80s body-popping compilation. But by this stage your brain will be already rewired by the first two-thirds.