Chuck Schuldiner Project

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Pop. 1280 - Way Station

Pop. 1280 are one of those acts who make New York City so special. They took the influence of acts like Swans, added in their own industrial touches and then, as life threw them punches, they embraced a healthy dose of minimalism. Having lost half of their lineup since 2016's excellent Paradise the band had to re-imagine how they were going to approach their sound going forward. What we wound up with was a masterful interpretation of dark industrial music that is ambitious and endlessly fascinating.

Way Station gives you a lot to sink your teeth into for such a minimalist record. The simple poetry of a track like Secret Rendezvous with its wonderfully melancholic vocals is addictive. There is a very real pain shown here and a sense that through it all, it's on Pop. 1280 to find a better way for themselves. Way Station is a deeply emotional offering, perhaps the most touching of the bands career. Yet it's not without its moments of harsh industrial fury, hell, the opening salvo of 'Boom Operator' ensures that you are not in for a light listen but rather a record that is not afraid to be challenging.

This record is a hell of a listen. It touches on a variety of genres and a deep swath of the industrial scene. Though the band were dealt some serious blows since their last offering they have certainly managed to come back stronger than ever. This new direction for them feels fresh and exciting and hints at interesting things to come. Way Station is a masterful offering proving just how talented these guys really are.

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