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Friday, February 3, 2023

Review: Ain’t – Lo-Fi Demo EP

Label: Self released

Date: July 2nd, 2022

It’s just the thing. Somebody mentions some nihilistic, mechanical, industrial, almost noisy soundscape, heavy metallic just enough so you can call it that, and I’m on it like death on a grandma! The way I’ve been feeling lately, this is just the thing I should avoid. Said the therapist, while I was contemplating how a dyslexic worker at the printing house could’ve turned him into the rapist. Money well spent, indeed!

Back to Ain’t. It’s an Italian project. A one-man project, of bedroom type, presuming on the photos I’ve found online. Naturally, this got me worried quite a bit, but it turns out I worried for nothing.

Okay, while this is heavily influenced on the greats of nihilistic industrial atmospheres, it’s meandering elsewhere as well, picking up as it goes along. Of course, somewhere at the third note of this recording, you will think of Marilyn Manson and you will not be wrong. Nor will this thought leave you until these twenty minutes run out. You might think of others though, accompanying Mr. Warner. Mr. Reznor first and foremost. Mr. Jourgensen, too.

Obvious choices, you will agree. When it comes to industrial noise, these are the heroes. Therefore, nobody can accuse Ain’t of being on the original side of musical spectrum. The man behind it sure likes what he hears from the above mentioned and is doing his best to follow in their footsteps. But there are two aspects to Ain’t’s creation that speak volumes about being a leader, at least attempted, rather than follower.

The first one being that the man can compose real fine tracks. Along with expected playing around with effects, different sounds and background noises, these songs are compiled of neat pieces which show a decent level of creativity. Unfortunately, only decent. If that’s even an “only” in a world where decent is well-above average. The fact actually made me wonder what would happen if Mr. Stefano D’Angelo had one or two likeminded individuals working with him. A second or third set of ears, I believe, would be of mega help to this guy.

The other aspects of Ain’t that need to be further discussed are the outside influences affecting “Lo-Fi Demo EP”. There are a couple of them. Most of them pertaining Mr. D’Angelo’s vocal style and execution. Namely, his delivery often glides away from the wrathful narrative of his mentioned idols and slip into very emotional tones. Once there, at least from my perspective, he takes on a role of the bad boy of Oasis, Mr. Liam Gallagher. Nihilism survives, of course, misanthropy, political incorrectness, hedonism coupled with self-destruction and anti-religious sentiment that mostly derives from the social stigma organized religion causes.

I’ve gone into lyrics on purpose, since the man perfectly depicts the words with his voice. Much like Marilyn Manson did on “Mechanical Animals” and “Holy Wood”. He adapts it to the lyric at hand and, in most instances, aligns it with the musical layers.

As for the outsiders moving about the sonic spectrum of Ain’t, I would note the basic garage rock scene as having a lot to do with how this release turned out. When talking about garage rock, you should think of the turn-of-the-century acts, such as The Hives, instead of the dinosaurs. Not that it’s a fault to the band or the release, as purists will no doubt claim. The recording is very much up-to-date, even if it mainly derives from the period now decades old.

Basically, one could dub Ain’t a contemporary take on the originals of the genre. Not the inventor, or even the re-inventor. A re-packager, so to speak. And a good one at that. Could be better though, but not bad.