Third Mind

Album Review

Front Line Assembly's second album (the second of three released in three months in late '87 and early '88) shows the prolific Vancouver-based duo at the peak of their early style, which is basically that of a Canadian Cabaret Voltaire. Less aggressive and sample-based than their compatriots Skinny Puppy (which songwriter Bill Leeb used to be a member of; the Pup's Dave Ogilvie co-produced State of Mind), Front Line Assembly married doomy electronic keyboards and percussion to a live-sounding bass and drum whomp, creating a more purely dance-oriented sound. The instruments are up front, and the supposedly menacing found-sound vocal samples are mixed well to the rear, which is basically the only difference between songs like the throbbing "Inside Out" and mid-period Cabaret Voltaire albums like Micro-Phonies. State of Mind is danceable and occasionally sonically intriguing, but it's also a little too plainly derivative to be taken entirely seriously.
Stewart Mason, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. First Reprisal
  2. Consequence
  3. Burnt Soul
  4. Testimony
  5. Landslide
  6. Terminal Power
  7. Malignant Fracture
  8. Eastern Voices
  9. Resistance
  10. Sustain Upright
  11. No Tomorrow
  12. And They Shall Bow