Power! Production! Propaganda! +++ Archive Collection 1 +++ United We Stand
+++ MekanOrganiK
Militia - United We Stand / Archive Collection 1996 - 1997 / Power! Propaganda! Production!

Within the last one and a half year the Belgian Rhythm Industrial collective Militia has released three albums in very different outfits. Some people say they are copy cats of Test Dept., but I think the band has it's own style. So if you like hand made rhythm and dark atmospheres, proclaiming voices and samples, test out Militia.


At first self produced CD-R "United We Stand" came out, a collection of Militia tunes from the last 20 years. Musically it's my favourite, but the way it's made, is a little poor. The paper labeled CD-R comes in a paper cover, lying in a card box with a logo clued on top and some printed cards. Another thing to critisize: There is no information which albums the tracks were taken from and in which year they were realised. But on "United We Stand" you can find on of the best Milita songs ever: "Mikael Bakunin". For me it's the prototypical Militia tune, starting with an electronic atmosphere and layered by slow drums like a starting machine, getting powerful more and more. Than a propagandistic voice is added, proclaiming anarchist statments, making you to raise your fist. Other track "Symbiosis" bringing a real factory athmosphere to your home, so that you nearly can smell the sweat of workers and feel the heat of the production hall. All songs on this record, besides "Necromonicon" are carried by a strong rhythm and directly make you move. Maybe scepticists call this "commercial", but it's not like Techno, it's man made and very energetic.


Second release, coming out on Neuropa Records, was "Archive Collection 1996 - 1997", a CD in a well designed fold out package. As the name already tells it's another collection, bearing songs from three recordings: "War against society", "Pain / Familientrauma" and "Kingdom Of Our Lord / Maschinenzimmer". All three recordings originally came out on German label Praxs Dr. Bearmann.
First one was a 3 LP-compilation together with Con-Dom, Grey Wolves, Streicher, Law and Victim Kennel, but one track of this - "Indoktrinate" is left. Why? Can't answer. The songs itself are a bit more noisy and sometimes ambient, most of them surprisingly lacking the typical rhythm. "Familientrauma" was a collaboration with British Power Electronics project Con-Dom. It's dominated by a heart beat, layerd by a hypnotic loop. Different additional layers are included, like scraping noise, an absent-minded talking and real-life sounds. For "Pain" Milita joined forces with Belgian cellist Laura Maes, who's also adding voices. Both pieces are some kind of floating without to many highlights but "Pain" cones with a fine classical end. Both songs were released on a 7 inch vinyl.
The last two songs were released on a fine packaged CD single, but "Kingdom Of The Lord" already re-released on "United We Stand". The singles title song is another prototypical Milita song, though a bit extented - the piece takes 12 minutes. First third is more ambient with a drowning bass in background, than a heavy energetic rhythm takes over, changing to another ambient part with a spoken sample, later becoming very noisy. "Maschinenzimmer" has musically nothing to do with the sound of the Swedish band of the same name. It's a more or less raw techno tune, comparatively quick with some classical tunes in the background.

Latest is the brand-new album "Power! Propaganda! Production!", also released on Neuropa Records. It starts wit "A New Statement", echoing some paragraphes of the anarchist statement in "Mikael Bakunin". The song itself is made in the typical Militia way: an electronic atmosphere combined with a strong rhythm. Two things have changed: The rhythm is more complex than before, additionally you have a "ethno" singer. The songs on the first half of this album follow this scheme, by that creating another, more "international" and human atmosphere. The second half, starting with the title song, is closer to "old" Milita, but with a stronger accentuation of the athmospheric part of the music. Militia-boss Frank has a lot of lyrics, he's intoning with emphasis and samples are used widely, so that the rhyhtmic part is not domnating that much. To sum it up: On this album Militia is following some new way without loosing the tracks of their past. If you like it or not, you have to decide on your own. For me it's a good decision, so the band avoids the danger of copying itself... By the way: If the last song "The Final Level" sounds familiar to you, it's not a mistke. It's using the core of "New European Order".

Finally some word about another important thing: The packing of this CD is really nice. A solid read card box with fine artwork. Inside you find a booklet with great graphics of working class images and a A4-poster. This is a bit weird, I'd rather like it in the same propagandistic way as the booklet images.


back        top