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Cabaret Voltaire Co-Founder Stephen Mallinder Debuts Video for “Shock to the Body”

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Cabaret Voltaire co-founder Stephen Mallinder delves into his signature sound of minimal synth, oblique wordplay, and “wonky disco” with a sensuous new single, “Shock To The Body,” out now via Dais Records. 

Mallinder’s latest single highlights his lauded place in the pantheon of electronic music while bridging the gap between Kraftwerk and The Downward Spiral-era Nine Inch Nails. The buoyant and funky track embraces a robotic industrial-meets-techno state, peppered with eerie circuits, synth noodlings, lack of reverb, and hypnotic beats. The palette of modular electronics and stereo strings is meant to channel the “temporal malaise of lockdown” with ambiguity and plasticity.

“Rhythm is the default, the bedrock, the building block – even the melodies are rhythmic….Music should draw you in; lyrics should make you think. Most interpretation is misinterpretation,” says Mallinder.

Mallinder revels in the uncertainty of interpretation of the cryptic, minimal lyrics.  “This is music of countdowns and comedowns, fleeting pleasures and opaque futures, observing the great decline while dancing on its ashes. Flux is deathless and forever; the rest, illusion.”

Recorded at MemeTune Studios in Cornwall with frequent collaborator Benge (aka Ben Edwards), “Shock To The Body” will certainly get into your nervous system and rewire your circuitry.

The music video was created frame by frame by Tulipomania and includes stop-motion objects and collages on thousands of individual sheets of black paper. The effect works beautifully with the hypnotic nature of the song, and its artistic throwback approach to animation brings to mind the work of Terry Gilliam.

Watch below:

“Shock to the Body” is featured on Stephen Mallinder’s latest LP, tick tick tick, out now via Dais Records.

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Stephen Mallinder is also set to make an appearance at this year’s Substance Festival in Los Angeles. More info here.

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Alice Teeple

Alice Teeple is a photographer, multidisciplinary artist, and writer. She is not in Tin Machine.

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