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Consistently inventive and interesting - 95%

autothrall, September 26th, 2009

So few industrial black metal bands (or industrial metal bands in general) succeed because they rarely possess the ability to go at these styles 50/50. It's always black metal with a touch of industrial, or vice versa. Poland's CSSABA is one of the few entities I've heard which can truly balance the two. The solo project of Massemord's guitar/keyboard maven Nihil, this may just be the best industrial black metal record I've heard outside of Red Harvest.

The album is a delight whether it's kicking your ass with an onslaught of grimgasmic riffing or fucking around in your head a little. The electronic influence is myriad, from hypnotic pulsing trance beats below the guitars, or old school factory style industrial machinery. It's both happy and evil at the same time, without sounding tongue in cheek or ironic, ever. Each of these six pieces is a unique episode that will immerse you, from the space noise and shuffling carnage of "A (A Date with Trees)", to the frenzied insanity of "S (Fuck Me Tender)", and the haunting, layered "S (Stitch, Stitch)". Despite the varied components, Nihil has a love for electronic music here that seamlessly matches them with the venomous black metal of his main band. Even the lyrics are good.

'Toxic CSSABA' is a real rarity, and it has the sounds to match. The guitars have a nice crunchy middle tone while the electronic elements all reverberate wonderfully. The drums hustle and crash, the synths are always catchy and ring across the industrial cornucopia. The album is consistently inventive and interesting, you won't hear much else like it and it destroys about 99% of the previous attempts to bridge these musical genres. You would be a fool to miss out on this.