Endurance is an appropriate title for this seventh album from MXD, the Swiss electro-industrial outfit who have been navigating the underground for an impressive twenty-two years. Including former members of the criminally-underrated Sybreed, MXD straddle the borders of industrial metal and electro-pop with a uniquely grubby and impossibly dark retrofuturism.
Beginning with the title track, Endurance (pre-order here) takes you on a journey both forwards and backwards. Referencing Eighties and Nineties dance music throughout, we have Depeche Mode-like vocals, shimmering synths, and beats from techno (“Nowhere Forever”) to drum n’ bass (“Ain’t Dead Yet”) to electro-ballad (“Alive Tonight”). Yet despite the dance nostalgia, this is above all an industrial metal album, and it feels futuristic – like rusty machinery cranking away on a far-off planet. There’s also plenty of variety – this is truly a meandering journey – refreshing when electronic music can often fall back on hypnotic monotony. There are references to black metal, stoner and punk, and the relentless intensity is broken by exhilarating pace-changes and pauses. There’s also a great Spanish language cameo by Swiss hardcore band CardiaC’s Ricardo Diges on “Contracultura.”
What really elevates this music, though, is the guitar work. Confident, innovative, heavy riffs are used sparingly. Layers of sound are built upon and taken away, but the guitars are a constant reminder of heaviness. Metal fans will be particularly satisfied with “Endurance” and “Nowhere Forever.”
MXD recently released a video for their single “Eraser,” check it out:
Visuals are also an important element for MXD – check out their videos – and they are a band that come into their own in a live setting. They remind us of this in the very first track with the sounds of cheering crowds that overwhelm the end of the song. Big hooks and anthemic choruses like that of “Eraser” will be huge crowd-pleasers at the release show on November 1st, and further live dates are listed below.
If you grew up with the Prodigy and Fear Factory, if you like dance music but need guitars too, if Rammstein is too polished, Depeche Mode too monotone… try swimming in the murky depths of MXD. Highly recommended.
Endurance Track Listing:
03. Alive Tonight
04. Ain’t Dead Yet
05. Every Thorn
07. Nowhere Forever
08. Black Lake
09. Contracultura (feat. Ricardo Diges)
11. Black Metal Shopping List
Run Time: 57:22
Release Date: November 1, 2019
Record Label: Tenacity Music
Upcoming Tour Dates:
11/01 – Delemont – S.A.S – Release Party
11/09 – St. Maurice – Manoir Pub
12/06 – Fribourg – Fri-Son
Arguably one of the band’s most popular songs, check out the video for “I Hate You.”