Belgian electronica/industrial/psychedelic producer “Implant” (brainchild of Len Lemeire) has made a name for himself internationally, and has developed a passionate cult following. The overarching concept of his music seems to revolve around a nitty gritty, realistic, straight to the core view on modern life, presented through a lens of robotic electronic industrial music. He recently released an album entitled “The Productive Citizen,” and the title enough should give you an idea of the humor and irony that is behind the blips and squarely shaped drumbeats presented in the music.
The first track, ‘Lord Knows I Tried (Album Version)’, kicks the album off with a fantastic vocal soundbite about electronic music that certainly arouses suspense and suspicion of what’s to come. Claus from the band Leatherstrip sings with Len on this track, this song has a bit of a punk essence, as the music is reminiscent of a gruesome machine, out to get you. The second track, ‘C.C.C.P.C.C.T.V.’ contains growling and devilish vocals, with a well mixed drum beat to nod a head to, and a pop hook that feels angry and ironic – and it works. ‘Scanned’ is a higher tempo track that would get a dance floor moving. This is a perfect example of a mixture of gothic attitude, 80’s vibe, and industrial flair.
‘The City’ is where the album starts to lose momentum. It is a mid tempo song that largely falls short of the album’s previous tracks. It doesn’t have that focused quality that propels the previous tracks.
‘Jour Nucélaire’, containing a German voice over and affected vocals, is another dance track that’s value comes from a danceability factor rather than a “sit down and listen to” quality that some of the other tracks have. The synth line is very repetitive and the only way to truly appreciate it is likely in a room full of raved out party-heads. ‘I’m in control’ is a bit slower and seems to be a musical homage to Nine Inch Nails.
The rest of the album follows this basic pattern of danceable, underground-clubby tracks that would give an average pop listener a headache and anxiety issues, but for a specific type of person, this is most certainly a gold mine. Implant is definitely an artist that you either love or hate, since he seems to be a strongly musically opinionated individual, and doesn’t steer to far from an overall musical vision.