Album of the Day: [Richard Ramirez] – The Machines Will React

A predominantly subdued collection of tracks from various Richard Ramirez outfits (almost entirely duo / solo efforts), The Machines Will React is, despite the multicephalous variance of the album, the closest I have thus far heard Ramirez reach drone. Favouring reverb in a lot of these tracks, listening to Machines, I am transported back to London, and the various churches, temporarily converted into noise/drone venues in Hackney and Bethnal Green. Perhaps due to this live-performance association, there is a greater sense of the deliberate, even the human, in Machines than so much of Ramirez’ work. Though never as forlorn as Yellow Swans’ Going Places, there is a pensive presence that feels particularly reminiscent of Dominick Fernow’s work as Prurient and even some of the crunchier sides of Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement. There are of course, exceptions to be found – most notably in the tracks performed as Werewolf Jerusalem (regular readers of my blog will be less than surprised to hear this is my favourite) and 12 Yr Old Proud Parent, both of which blast violently through the profound and thunderous fog.

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