Skinny Puppy - Remission LP
Beyond the buckets of fake blood and the recent publicity stunt in which they invoiced the US government $666,000 for unauthorized use of their music at Guantanamo Bay, Skinny Puppy's albums from the '80s remain an impressive hybrid of industrial grit and new wave programming. These albums became synonymous with the aggressive, industrial dance sound furthered by Ministry and Front 242. Skinny Puppy was founded by two Canadian young men both named Kevin, having grotesquely altered their names to avoid confusion. Principle technician cEvin Key was born Kevin Crompton, and vocalist Kevin Ogilvie rechristened himself Nivek Ogre. Skinny Puppy signed to Nettwerk upon the strength of their Back And Forth demo cassette, noted for its gloomy, punk approach to electronics. During this early incarnation, Ogre and Key were also joined by Bill Leeb, who later went to found Front Line Assembly. 1984's Remissions was the band's proper debut transmitted through Key's alien sequencing, Ogre's hoarse vocals and a confrontational use of sampled dialogue culled from art-house and b-movie horror films alike. Originally released as a six track EP, Remissions is replete with the bright timbres of galvanized synths lashed to beat-box aggression. Coupled with Orge's affected vocals, Skinny Puppy's sound is given an acid bath treatment through the generous use of a tinny flange that's at once sharp, clinical and distancing. The lead-track "Smothered Hope" found Skinny Puppy full-formed in their saw-tooth industrial dance idiom, with the slippery "Glass Houses" paralleling Severed Heads were doing down in Australia. This pressing restores Remission to its original track listing and design.