After the critical acclaim of 2008's, 'The Golden Foretaste of Heaven', Berlin's favourite anti-hero, Alec Empire releases 'Shivers', a 5 track mini album that serves up as a little taster for his highly anticipated new album out later this year.
This is the most recent output from The Hellish Vortex, the production team founded by Alec Empire and Nic Endo. THV is based in a studio warehouse space in the centre of Berlin; it's design reminiscent of Kubrick's, 'Space Odyssey'.
Last year, Empire announced a change in direction, a departure from his signature digital hardcore sound and called it - "The Sound of New Berlin". This sonic revolution has brought about an influx of hipster collaborations in the form of Raveonettes, who got their single remixed by Nic Endo and Alec's mutual pairing with one, Patrick Wolf, who's Berlin musings have led to the hotly tipped single, 'Vultures'. Blogosphere and NME favourites, Big Pink have also appeared on a few tracks off the new album.
Alec Empire's output has never been higher and more diverse than over the past months. Those who remember him as the industrial noise terrorist he once was when he appeared on the cover of Kerrang! magazine many years ago, should think again. Never one to be pigeon holed, Alec has worked with a myriad mix of artists like Thurston Moore, Jon Spencer, Dan The Automator and Definitive Jux bad boy, EL-P for example.
The track 'Baby Skulls' is the perfect representation of "The Sound of New Berlin". This is electronic music the likes of which you have not experienced before. Berlin is the city with the most hedonistic club nights anywhere in Europe. A city that doesn't allow compromises when it comes to getting your next kick. The only way to survive and evolve is to keep on reinventing yourself to stay ahead of the pack.
'If You Live or Die' features Big Pink's Robbie Furze on guitars and a Big Pink remix is also on the cards.
This is Alec's revolution and 2009 looks set to be the year of the Empire.
'Shivers' will be released on digital format (iTunes has a full live concert as a "bonus" feature) via Eat Your Heart Out Records, and will also be available as limited edition special packaged CD.