Beneath the Skin reviews
AIDING & ABETTING #109 Vol.V, #19
A real departure from the usual cybercore propagated by Re-Constriction. The man who calls himself Statik has imbibed heavily upon European techno and spewed a sheen of minimalist dance music (approaching trance at times) behind the ethereal vocals of Miss kaRIN. Songs like the title track really show off Statik's talent for crafting a massively attractive sound. The music and vocals build slowly around a pulsating beat, culminating with an orgy of sonic delights. Ooof. - J.W.
ALTERNATIVE PRESS #99
Collide's Beneath The Skin is very atypical for the Re-Constriction label, breaking away from its traditional industrio-guitar sound. Vocalist kaRIN sounds like Siouxsie crossed with Elizabeth Fraser, which works exceptionally well with Statik's sonic assemblages. Falling Up weaves kaRIN's threads through a quilt of distant voices, submerged electric guitar chords, Laibachian ghosts and a Banshee beat. - Michael Mahan
APOCALYPSE Issue 1, Vol.1
Not the harsh industrial we've come to expect from Re-Constriction but beautiful female vocals from kaRIN, lush, melodic industrial programming from Statik. Many gothic tones to this release, but still industrial, with the exceptional gothic song Pandora's Box - envision black clad goths swaying through the mist in a graveyard lit by the light of the moon. Remixes by Christ Analogue and cEvin Key of Skinny Puppy/Download. - Jim Smith
Black Monday Vol. 1.4
From the first time I heard Collide's Violet's Dance on a Re-Constriction compilation, I knew I wanted to get the album. Beneath the Skin fulfills all the promises that Violet's Dance made. Beautiful and catch melodies are tinged everywhere with noise, and the sample manipulation is extremely nimble. The songs are electronically based, and when guitar and bass appear, they never overpower the synths. I love the idea behind Collide, a clash of the sweet and enchanting with the harsh world of noise. There's a lot that can be done with those contrasts, and I'm not sure they use noise to it's fullest potential. However, you have to be impressed by the creative use of noise in a traditional song structure. And, of course, kaRIN's vocals are stunning, a perfect counterpoint to the harsh elements in the music. Another good thing about Beneath The Skin is that it has a variety of tempos an moods. From the hectic swirl of Violet's Dance to the gentle, lullaby-like Strange, the music flows on like a stream of varying depths. There is an undercurrent that links all the songs together, but at the same time each evokes very different impressions. The title track, Beneath the Skin, is breath-taking, and cEvin Key's remix is pretty interesting. Christ Analogue's Wade Alin did a really great jobv of remixing Deep, bringing out a totally different side of the song. - Jennifer Barnes
BLACK MOON #7
Great CD! This one is way up on my list with a very dark gothic feel. The lyrics are fantastic. kaRIN's voice is not only beautiful, but it is probably the most seductive I've heard. The title cut Beneath The Skin, along with Black, Violet's Dance and Dreams & Illusions are not to be missed. Check this one out!!!!
CARBON 14 #9
Collide consists of two seemingly disparate parts in the form of kaRIN, whose meltingly powerful voice and abstract lyrics/poetry would seem (at first glance) to have nothing to do with the well articulated clangor of Statik's thundering harmonies. But as the whole may be greater than the parts, so is their fusion a unique sonic tapestry of surprising strength. kaRIN's voice is like the false sensation of warmth immediately after a very deep cut and it projects over the top of some of the most original samples and multi-channel complexity I've heard in a while. I think the closest comparison is to imagine what would happen if you combined both Danielle Dax and Frontline Assembly. The first track, Violet's Dance, although relatively short, has an excellent driving drum beat which doesn't leave you any illusions about how well this alloy works (Beneath the Skin, with its additional remix later by cEvin Key is another fine example). The real ear candy is contained in Have Faith and Pandora's Box, which, although more restrained, have multiple overlays that make you stretch to try to catch all of the sounds you're hearing at the same time. - Jeff Young
Carpe Noctem Vol 3 Issue 2
The talented duo of kaRIN and Statik breathes a fresh and refreshing life into the somewhat stifled and often times cliched realm that is industrial based music. What makes the difference is the supple voice of kaRIN (imagine Siouxsie crossed with Suzanne Perry of Love Spirals Downward), and the modifications of sound Statik makes to take full advantage of her gorgeous voice. Their overall sound is at once aggressive, yet accessible. The subtleties of the aural curtain thrown up by Statik is truly something not to be missed. The opening track, Violets Dance, literally screams for dance club rotation. This is the disc that ethereal music enthusiasts can add to their collections as a change of pace. Collide has delivered quiet an auspicious debut here, and I for one, can't wait to hear what the future holds for them. - Peter Kurtin
It has taken awhile for this album to grow on me, but I've come to realize that this band and its release are both aptly named. The sound is an aural "collision" between the musical collage created by Statik and the dramatic vocals of kaRIN. Collide aims to ooze itself "beneath the skin" of the listener and, for the most part, it accomplishes that goal. The opening track, Violet's Dance, is a breathtaking flurry of synthesized beats and rhythms that sets the pace for much of the album. Falling Up, where kaRIN's Siouxsie-esque vocals provide the perfect lead-in to frantic, glorious cacophony of mingled choruses and power chords, has the potential to become a goth dance club hit. During the disc's midsection, the music is toned down and kaRIN seems content to sit back and serenade us for a while. This mood change is a letdown after the intensity of the opening tracks, but Collide brings it up again with Pandora's Box, a dark, moody piece which demonstrates the perfection with which both members' talents can merge. Statik, who is solely responsible for the instrumental side of Collide, demonstrates a versatility that is sadly lacking in today's typical goth/industrial genre. He's not a slave to his keyboard, and he's also not afraid to use guitars! As an added treat, Beneath The Skin closes with remixes by Christ Analogue and musical deity cEvin Key. Several listens to Beneath The Skin confirm that Collide creates the greatest impact when it indulges its tendency to be larger than life. - Stephanie Quinlan
CITY REVOLT Vol.4, #8
Collide is a group who seems intent on short-circuiting the differences between the creepy crawler goth network and the hardfloor of industrial dance oblivion. Their debut work, Beneath The Skin, is hastily pressing the mold for what our beloved club anthem tracks should sound like by the year 2000. Fans of Battery and Switchblade Symphony should come together on this one. - Aaron Johnston
CMJ Issue 479
Collide is a band for that select group of people who are young enough to be titillated by the new wave of electronic sequencing, but old enough to remember the eerie ambiance of Siouxsie & The Banshees in their prime (or those who are in the dark wave genre in general). Walking a fine line between industrial mayhem and gothic brooding, the L.A. duo's debut release, Beneath The Skin, sounds like the recording of an angel shackled in hell. It's black, twisted, and evil, but also hauntingly beautiful. Statik is the synth-head, producing everything from somber, atmospheric tracks (Pandora's Box) to hard-edged cyber-disco (Violet's Dance) with just a smidgen of heavy guitar groove. kaRIN is the siren; her rich vocals (a la Sioux, Fraser, Bush... you get the idea) decorates the dismal symphonies with just a splash of obscure but poetic sweetness and light. The above tracks, plus Falling Up, Strange and Dreams And Illusions, are perfect for those moments when sorrow seems to pour down like rain. And if their normal offerings just aren't quite macabre enough for you, check out the Christ Analogue remix of Deep or Beneath The Skin (Subconscious Remix) courtesy of Skinny Puppy's cEvin Key. The sun may never shine on you again. - M. Tye Comer
On their debut record, the duo of programmer Statik and vocalist kaRIN wield their sonic wizardry like audio alchemists, swirling fire (harsh electronic dance beats and samples) and air (lilting ethereal vocals) in a musically-wicked potion. Fans of artists as diverse as Sarah McLachlan or Elizabeth Frazier to followers of European digi-dance industrialists will revel in Collide's rhythmic and elemental ambiance. (4 out of 5 rating) - Rik Millhouse
With the recent breakup of Siouxsie & The Banshees, fans of chugging alterna-goth with chirpy female vox will surely rejoice in the release of Collide's debut. Comprised of the LA-based duo of Statik on sonic assembly and kaRIN on vox, they've got a similar sound as the "Spellbound" Siouxsie with a bit of the industrial-funk ala Thrill Kill Kult thrown in there for good measure and interesting backings! My hunch is if they did an alterna-house mix of the track Black, they'd really 'break' big. !!!!+ - Mick Hale
HUH Issue #26
With airy, female vocals, electric sound effects, and pulsating keyboard beats, this male/female duo creates music that would be perfect for a cyberpunk movie. Black would work well during the opening title sequence, the occasional flashes of static guitar could be for those shots of the bad guy crossing the dance floor in slow-motion, while the mellow Deep would fit the obligatory love scene. But despite the edgy electronics, it's a mostly mellow affair, though the rhythms are quick and sharp, making Skin a lot more appropriate for those dance club scenes than the bedroom ones. - Paul Semel
GLASS EYEDiscs like this make listening to all the doo-doo worth it. A
collaboration of styles of two distinct personalities, Collide brings together the programming and mixing talents of Statik (an electronic music veteran, he released Machines back in '88) and kaRIN, a chanteuse with an atmospheric, beautiful voice. The interesting detail is that the music is so diverse; although it's all presented in the MIDI context, the tracks vary from typical cybertronic mixes to more ambient, soaring tunes to cuts that are almost commercially viable. In the meantime, they're all endowed with a sense of passion, extreme emotion, and an almost sensuous texture, thanks to miss kaRIN. And by the way, this girl is one bad-ass chick (I made sure to check for her photo in the CD sleeve). The whole kaRIN listening experience reminds me of the girl from Curve, whatever her name is. I have to say that I truly enjoyed the disc as a whole, since it probably didn't leave my CD player for days. Especially mesmerizing, however, were Pandora's Box and Deep, as well as Collide's ode to ebony, Black. The vocal treatment is exquisite, and the programming, to my ear, flawless. Statik, by the way, produced this disc, and I hope some of those big-time guys notice this man's mixing talent. Another note: cEvin Key (Download, Skinny Puppy) supplies some of his own studio tricks on his remix of Beneath The Skin. Seems that some of the big boys have already noticed! - Nick Korostyshevsky
The industrial/synthcore gambit has become increasingly trick these days when one considers the large number of harsh, driving electro releases hitting the store as of late. And many of the bands are homogeneous, reveling in the same elements. I swear that every other industrial band has hired the son of Froggy from the "Little Rascals" to do their vocals and exclusively studied the lyrical prose (or lack thereof) of bad '80's death metal groups. On top of that, does it not seem any people play their instruments anymore? Sampling has become too easy. Well, Collide-vocalist/lyricist kaRIN and "sonic matrix assembly" man Statik-are among the new breed of industrial (and industrial-type) bands who want to subvert these weary principles. Unlike your typical synthcore band, this duo have a strong ear for melody, dynamics and sonority, resulting in a multi-faceted release which can appeal to goth, industrial and hard rock fans equally. In fact, their appeal could extend to a wider mainstream audience, because the music in listener-friendly while still maintaining artistic integrity. Beneath the Skin begins with a quiet atmospheric passage before diving headlong into the catchy dance rhythms of Violet's Dance, amalgamating element of electro, techno, and ethereal goth. Strange rocks out with metallic guitars, energetic programming, and kaRIN's melodic, multi-tracked vocals which glide smoothly over the song's hard edges. This song exemplifies the band's approach and lives up to their moniker: utilizing contrasting elements which ultimately complement one another when joined. Then indulge in the moody, Middle Eastern-tinged Pandora's Box or the dreamier Have Faith, the latter certainly going more into the pop realm but showcasing kaRIN's strong use of vocal harmonies. And to appeal to the hardcore rivetheads out there, heavier mixes are other notable elements to Skin: the lyrics don't always rhyme (hey, fancy that), the important use of dynamics and the variety of textures Statik provides via his electronics adding another level to the sonic architecture. his use of sampling and programming keeps this from being a standardized recording as the electronics breath with the music rather than constrict it. And the guitars (provided by guest artists) are quite diverse, veering from the sharp-edged electric slide to rhythmically driving acoustic to hard rocking electric. - Bryan Reesman
Consisting of a serene siren and a master machine manipulator, the LA-based cyberduo is easily the most exciting act on this label simply because they don't sound like they belong on Re-Constriction. Their apt slant on gothic-industrial would feel more at home on Projekt. Falling Up is a hard electrometallic engine that guns it halfway through, cranking up the lofty operatic samples. 95&7 is spacey, oscillating ambiance that could easily have a place on a more ambitious Manifold compilation, while Deep resembles a cyber The Moon Seven Times! How's that for diversity? With a radio-friendly single in Deep, Collide may just have something here. - Chris Ayers
Collide are made up of kaRIN on vocals and poetry alongside Statik (who's worked with Prince!) on noise and sonic matrix assembly. Beneath The Skin echoes out tribal industro with glacial harmonies and works deliciously. Think Curve, Siouxsie and Dead Can Dance for pointers.
A nice blend of solid electronics-driven industrial dance music and female vocals that clearly originate from the 4AD school of thought. The end result is a melding of things industrial with things ethereal, with more emphasis on the industrial side of things. The mix works amazingly well, and the album is a good listen through and through. Also of note is the cEvin Key (Skinny Puppy, Download) remix of Beneath the Skin. Fans of Battery and Allison With One should take note. - Eric Sanders
Interface Version 3.2
This male/female duo is the epitome of diametric balance, and while the name Collide evokes images of car crashes and other disasters, rest assured that the music of Collide does no such thing. The soundscapes Statik has created are everything electro-dance-industrial should be: complex, progressive, and compelling without being overwhelming. kaRIN's vocals ring out like angelic bells, and are often treated as another instrument in Statik's arsenal, effected and sampled, adding yet another facet to the polished, perfected gem that is Collide. - Veronica Kirchoff
Finding the right combination of electric and human music is a difficult thing. Either the voice is dominant, and the rest of the music sounds like an elaborate beatbox, or the music dominates and makes the voice sound insignificant and out of place. Luckily, there are a few bands out there who know what they're doing, and Collide is one of them. A duo from LA, Collide creates a sound that is at once mysterious and obvious. With kaRIN's voice sailing and soaring above us, we feel the rocky earth in Statik's cyber-industrial sonic foundations. Imagine Cocteau Twins remixed by Frontline Assembly. Or a blooming flower laid on broken glass. - A.D.
NEURO STYLE (import publication)Oh yes, gimme more of that, don't stop...
aaahhhhh, take me. Harder, harder. And now slowly, yes, slowly - oohh - I'm cumming! Well, are you getting hot already? Then wait until you've heard Beneath the Skin, because this is pure sex. Leading the way to orgasm. Yes, hee hee. I want you. I want your body, your soul, your sex. I want to greedily drink your breath, I want to tremble in your arms, read in your eyes... Collide! Seldom do you hear something as erotic and sexy. Of course this description is a tightrope walk, because everybody experiences the act in his own way. What this one likes, that one dislikes. Take this warning: Collide have very little to do with snuggling and the likes, this is the real thing (whatever that is meant to be). The rhythm is driving in the purest sense of the word; the vocals sometimes sound like a horny breath down your neck. Goose bumps on the way to your crotch. No, I didn't do any field tests on this, my experience with Collide is based purely in theory. Perhaps it doesn't even work, but who wants to know? You? Then buy this CD and allow yourself to be seduced by the colorful electronic mixture of hands that long for you and horny ways to pass the time. Oh, and all those who now believe that this review is a bit one-sided should know the following: Seduction doesn't begin in bed.
NEW INDUSTRIAL SOUNDS Issue 4
Intimacy and beauty make their music prime. It's somewhat of a flashback to a select few of the 80's female fronted (synth) bands as well as Siouxsie & The Banshees and Dead Can Dance, with extensive imagination and dark tastes. kaRIN remains eloquent from resembling a pretty banshee to a choral singer. She entices you to follow her through enlightening and mysterious tales. Statik stages the mechanical music with a versatile perspective-he's certain harshness and lushness can exist together. He chooses the sounds well-acoustic instruments, cloudy synths, tambourines, full to empty percussion, and static. There are multiple layers of sound happening, one of which is textural guitar lightly complementing the sequencing and kaRIN. Violet's Dance is one hell of a way to open up the debut CD; an incredibly melodic and demanding synth pulse driven partially by hollow-stone percussion quickly flows with the ease of kaRIN's resonance. - Chris Jagasits
Collide's debut full-length release is a multi-textured, unexpectedly noisy goth/industrial blend that's really tasty. Yes, the trademark gentle-to-soaring, ethereal female vocals (a la Siouxsie and the Banshees and Switchblade Symphony) are here, courtesy of vocalist/lyricist kaRIN. But what sets Collide apart from the goth pack is the delightfully noisy sample, synth, and beat collage work of Statik, the other half of the duo. Highlights on this disc include the title track, a solid dance number with enough dissonant synthesizer squeals to fill the open spaces in the vocals. Deep is the obvious radio cut' good melody, strong hooks and just the right amount of exotic edginess to make it special. And Collide saves the best for last: At the end of the disc, as if to permanently cement the group's industrial credential, we get two excellent, dance floor-ready remixes of the albums' strongest songs, Deep (done by Christ Analogue) and Beneath the Skin, mixed by cEvin Key, late of Skinny Puppy. The latter track will blow you away. Much of the song's original instrumentation is peeled off, and a totally sick, minimalist synth drum line propels kaRIN's singing into a foreign world: goth house!! Collide will not only take you somewhere truly new, but also will offer a diagnostic tool for your health: If that last cut doesn't get you dancing, you'll know you're already dead. - Frank Smith
OFF THE RECORD
Dreamy poetic lyrics, distorted, swirling melodies, and angelic female vocals coat this poignant debut with a layering of intense gothic aestheticism over cyber-electronic dance harmonies. From the mesmerizing Pandora's Box to the spiritual 95&7 to the dance classic Violet's Dance, Collide creates a collision of several musical genres sure to make everyone take notice. cEvin Key and Christ Analogue provide remixes of Beneath The Skin and Deep respectively, adding another coating to this divisional congruence. Multilayered music with a dose of imagination places Collide on the forefront of future musical styles. From gothic to industrial, Collide has woven these styles together naturally into a mingling arrangement of tunes sure to reach the darkest depths of your soul. - Xina
Collide strikes a wonderful balance between hard-edged electronics, haunting melodies, thick, complex percussion, industrial/noise elements and a few moments of well-distorted and abstract guitar work on Beneath The Skin. This, coupled with female vocals that soar from beautifully angelic to hauntingly dark results in a very strong, elaborate album that is suited to both club and home listening. This CD also has two remixes: one by Christ Analogue that is sure to please any industrial/alternative club-goer, and one by cEvin Key that shows off his trademark mastery of electronics. - DJ Leslie
PERMISSION Issue 8
The only reason I put this CD in was because I wanted to hear a new voice. And was I surprised! Re-Constriction has taken the industrial music scene by the hair and dragged it forward by signing Collide, a duo that demonstrates how a female-led industrial band can be powerful and innovative. Collide mixes passionate, poetic lyrics with a hard industrial edge. kaRIN's voice is amazingly strong and emotionally charged. Mixed with the power of the music behind, engineered by Statik, this CD is definitely worth taking to the top of your list. Adding remixes to the album are cEvin Key and Wade Alin (of Christ Analogue). This album is not only beautiful, but extremely strong. All 12 tracks are multidimensional; Statik brings us everything from up-tempo, fast dance to slower, more ethereal pieces. Together with kaRIN's sensuous, almost angelic voice, this album is a must-have for all who appreciate great music. It made my cats dance, and they never do that. - Melissa
Phosphor (a Holland-based publication)
Re-Constriction, one of the most interesting labels in the world, has signed another innovative electronic formation with textural guitar complementing the sound. Collide mixes kaRIN's amazingly strong angelic vocals with Statik's musical talent and technical skills. The wonderful balance between hard-edged electronics, haunting melodies and passionate poetic lyrics is stunning. kaRIN is a passionate mullet-dimensional artist whose creative endeavors include poetry, painting, design, vocals, and dance. She brings in the Siouxsie & the Banshees, Sleeping Dogs Wake, 4AD side of the band. Statik takes care of Collide's sonic landscapes. Several artists appear such as cEvin Key (Download, Skinny Puppy) and Wade Alin (Christ Analogue).
Gothic music of any sort isn't usually associated with Re-Constriction Records, but I think Chase mad a good decision to sign this duo. Musically, Collide are very electronically-based, covering everything from dancey upbeat numbers (Violet's Dance) to more ethereal, emotional pieces (Pandora's Box) Some guitar does make its way into the music, with heavy distortion (Falling Up) and acoustically as well (Deep). The latter track really shows Collide's gothic side off well, with kaRIN's delicate voice woven deeply into the dreamy rock fabric. Lots of potential here for fans outside of the usual Re-Con die-hards...Beneath The Skin is a pretty strong debut: good songs, lots of variety, great packaging, and remixes by cEvin Key and Christ Analogue. Chalk up yet another band on the fringe of gothic that successfully embraces the good elements of the genre while avoiding the cheesy ones. - Daniel Hinds
SERVO Issue 3
I was lucky enough to hear the preceding demo for this album and Statik, the former employee of the now pretty much defunct Great Purple One, has been developing well... the new tracks glow and the old tracks have been given a new layer of development. There are layers of sound and rhythms, kaRIN uses her voice beautifully not only to sing her poetry, but as another instrument as well. Beneath The Skin and Pandora's Box are beautiful examples of this. It could be called gothic, but it's not all brooding and dark, it's got that basis, but there is something that just shines. - Jen Muecke
Slavery Issue 1
Beware... this CD is incredibly infectious. Just one listen an you'll be caught, as kaRIN's passionate and seductive vocals dig their nails into your soul and drag you through to her realm. The electronic wizard, Statik, completes the Los Angeles duo, and together they are known as Collide. His pulsating sweep of aggressive digital massage combine with his partner's sensual voice, and result in a complex, melodic, and wonderful sound. One of my favorite tracks is the more fast-paced Falling Up, which features a truly apocalyptic finale of sheer electronic chaos and manipulated opera chanting. The mood quickly switches as acoustic guitars wind into the next track, Deep, a more traditional folk-like goth song with beautiful poetic lyrics. Over the course of the album, the styles continue to alternate and flow into each other in an orgasmic collision of sound. I really adore this CD, upon each and every listen my mind peels away new layers and discovers more and more wondrous sounds. From the packaging to the music, everything is perfect. You quite simply must buy this... infection is inevitable.
STAINED PAGES Issue 3
Being a male musician/female vocalist duo with an electronic basis, it's hard to avoid comparisons to acts with similar qualities, but those comparisons don't go far, because Collide explore realms that those other bands don't touch on. The music is written and performed by a longtime studio wizard named Statik who has worked with acts as disparate as Tool, Prince, Marvin Gaye and Leonard Cohen, although none of these connections could really be considered an influence on the dense electronic stew that he has concocted. Over the top of Statik's creations float the sugar-sweet vocals of kaRIN, which creates a stunning contrast of abrasion versus beauty. Add to this the bonus remixes by Christ Analogue and cEvin Key (intended as tasters for an upcoming full-length disc of Collide remixes), along with the beautiful cover by Susan Jennings (the woman responsible for the covers of many Projekt releases), and the end result is a truly exceptional effort. - Greg Clow
THE ALBUM NETWORK issue 897
Sounds like: A mesmerizing collage of electronics, guitars, noise, technology and man, covering a vast sonic landscape. Collide are at points ambient, at others techno, at still others industrial, all united by kaRIN's celestial vocals. At times Collide are reminiscent of the Wax Trax! stuff of the late 80s, at others they call to mind the ambient electronics of today, but it's all cool. Recommended Songs: Violet's Dance, Deep, Beneath The Skin, Falling Up and Strange. - Gerald Shaia
The Ninth Wave #7
The genres of Industrial dance (mostly masculine) and ethereal (mostly feminine) rarely converge, but when heavenly voices meet electronic manipulation, the results can be inspiring. This California duo creates a fusion of goth and industrial, always avoiding the clichŽs others get mired in. Various moods are explored here, some upbeat, others melancholy. But the high quality production and obvious talents of both kaRIN (vox) and Statik ( music) make this disc a cut above its contemporaries, with traces of both Siouxsie and Chris & Cosey. The chaos of Falling Up blends into the swirling, acoustic sounds of Deep, later adding crunch in Strange. Two remixes included -- one by Christ Analogue's Wade Alin, and another by the always appreciated cEvin kEY.
The Stony Brook Statesman Vox. XI. #27
Beneath the Skin whirls forth ten tracks plus two remixes (courtesy of cEvin Key and Christ Analogue). Statik along with kaRIN have created one of the most varying electronic albums in an age where everybody wants to be KMFDM. While Statik handles the machinery, kaRIN scribes the words and produces some of the most thought provoking lyrics at a time where everybody yells, "throw your hands in the air!" Thank God for kaRIN! This album is capable of reaching out to virtually anybody. Industrial freaks will instantly approve just because cEvin Key remixes the title track. Even your mom will find something she likes on here! Collide superbly touches upon each style coming off as a heavyweight in whatever genre, but, in reality, just flirting with it. kaRIN, like Ms Root (Switchblade Symphony) conveys a level of emotion that is absent in almost all music today. Normally, anything I write about I can understand if people don't like it, but usually it's just that they don't even give it a chance. As a result, I usually put little red flag warnings of elements that might turn it for you I normally do that here, but I honestly can't put anything bad down about this release! If you don't believe me, fine, just continue to listen to what the radio feeds you. In the meantime, you are strongly urged to contact Re-Constriction. - Marc Weisbaum
The Valley Scene
Collide is the L.A.-based duo of Statik and kaRIN. Beneath the Skin is their debut release. It is a multi-dimensional configuration of electronic ensembles and vocal dynamics. Statik is the music master while kaRIN intones poetry that transforms into a chorus of resonating vocals. The music is heavily layered in swirls of kaleidoscopic dance pules that throb in unison with kaRIN's illumination of verse. Beneath the Skin is a recollection of one of those hot summer, rainbow-dripping sunsets from a hilltop in the middle of nowhere. Its carefree spirit blows the rust from worrisome secular chains and carries your soul away into a positive bliss. Reality becomes a simple existence of now. There are instances where kaRIN's vocal conjures reflections of Siouxsie and the Banshees. Other moments bring to surface a Cocteau Twins motif. However, neither of these parallels is too deeply embedded to overpower Collide's unique identity. Statik's ability to execute such intensely layered cybertracks is evidence of Collide's crossover potential. kaRIN's verbal illustrations increase the possibilities for a wide array of listeners. Collide goes beyond the surface of an electro manipulation of gothic by combining the personalities of two genres. This is the result, an unformulated hue, Beneath The Skin. - Tish
TRASHCAN BANGIN' CULTURE #4
What an amazing CD! When I first put this on I was left speechless. Collide's debut Beneath The Skin will set the trend in the dark, almost goth industrial scene. Soon you will see little goth/industrial girls with Collide stickers on their lunch boxes. And let's not forget the two incredible remixes on here. Wade Alin from Christ Analogue remixed Deep and cEvin Key remixed their already smokin' song Beneath The Skin. Songs like Dreams and Illusions and Pandora's Box send chills down my back when I hear them. All in all, I suggest you buy this album right now before you're left in the dust without experiencing the beauty that is Collide. - King James
kaRIN is the ethereal Kate Bushy chanteuse, constituting exactly one-half of goth-industrial duo Collide. She trills and whispers over sheets of beautifully orchestrated noise and static. kaRIN embodies the contextually disparate element of harmonic beauty, the contrast of which I'm sure is intended and incidentally very effective. Statik provides the layers of supersaturated instrumentation and interference that comprise his custom cacophony. DJ and Diva. Artist and Inspiration. The integration and ultimate union of Statik and kaRIN is almost redundantly documented in their choice of the project's name. This technique is exploited successfully by Statik (credited in the liner notes with "noise and sonic-matrix assembly," in contrast to kaRIN's "voice and poetry ") in relation to his calculated juxtaposition of kaRIN's saccharine soprano against his industrial noise. - Wendy Lemmon
Like the band name intent, this LA-based duo creates a very successful collision of musical styles. Ranging from up-tempo cyber-dance tracks to slow atmospheric pieces, musicians Statik and kaRIN merge industry and passion within swirling layers of sound, emotion, and poetry. So you've never heard of Statik? It's probably because he's been working with diametrically-opposed sounding artists such as Tool, Prince, Love & Rockets, Marvin Gaye, Trevor Horn, Leonard Cohen, and Machines of Loving Grace. From this diversity and artistic integrity comes Statik's ability to refine his wide musical talent and technical skills while walking the line between abrasion and beauty. - David Jackson
UNDER THE FLAG #8
Rare. Beneath The Skin sounds like an incredible rarity we have to protect and cherish. Maybe it is due to the poetical magic of kaRIN's presence of singer and lyricist, or maybe it is due to Statik's music which is real metal-industrial surfing on clouds of amazing effects and draped in a kind of gothic atmosphere. Drawing a striking parallel between Beneath The Skin and Sleeping Dogs Wake's Threnody album is inevitable as it is flattering. Collide gives an alternative to hard metal and inhuman ideas. One more step toward more organic music. This is the album you can't miss...it's too rare. - DD
UNDER THE VOLCANO #32
This is one of the best and most unique records this label has put out. The songs are danceable but ambiently layered electronic pieces (reference points might be a noisier In The Nursery or Will) led by a female vocalist named kaRIN that reminds me of Cranes' Allison Shaw, one of my favorite songstresses. I smell strong crossover potential from this LA duo. Included are remixes by Puppy's cEvin Key and Christ Analogue's Wade Alin. Collide is hard to describe because I've never really heard anything like it, but it's rich, deep, and haunting. - Rich