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“This is a message, and a warning. There’s no escaping here, or avoiding!” are the opening lyrics of “Invade. Destroy. Repeat” from electro-metal rock band Powerman 5000’s latest album Builders of the Future (releasing today, May 27th, via UMe – Tboy Records), and they are profound. Profound in that there simply hasn’t been an album of such sheer energy and hook in its entirety since Rob Zombie’s Hellbilly Deluxe and that there truly is no escaping it.
Builders of the Future is going to be in your stereo all summer. It’s going to haunt your dreams. You are going to get sick of it because, frankly, you won’t be able to stop listening to it… over, over, and over.
Fronted by singer Spider One and rounded out by current guitarists Nick Quijano (ex-American Head Charge) and Richard Jazmin, bassist Gustavo Aued, and drummer DJ Ratan, Powerman 5000 burst onto the scene in 1999 with the hits “When Worlds Collide” and “Nobody’s Real” from their debut album Tonight the Stars Revolt! Blending horror and sci-fi with an infectious metal cum pop mentality, the public responded fanatically.
Following this success, and for reasons I’m unable to ascertain (though I’ll blame American radio’s predilection for hip-hop), Stateside interest in the band, regardless of their subsequent quality releases, waned, and PMK5 (aka Powerman 5000) became, regardless of their loyal worldwide fan-base, an American underdog. Apparently that’s just the way they like it because Builders of the Future is the strongest album of their career and should launch them once again into the stratosphere.
Kicking off with the previously mentioned and relentless opening track, Builders of the Future works concurrently as a concept album, telling on one hand the story of alien invaders (PMK5 to be exact) who have arrived to Earth to “invade, destroy, repeat,” and as an album of sheer, raw hook and youthful rebellion. There’s no geeky kitsch here. It’s quite simply, track after track, anthemic ear worm, all built upon driving percussion and bass, layered electronica, and guitars as thick as Kim Kardashian’s ass. Yeah, they are that thick.
From the album’s first single, “How To Be A Human,” to the similarly catchy and driving anthems “We Want It All,” “You’re Gonna Love It, If You Like It Or Not,” “Modern World,” and “Live It Up Before You’re Dead,” the album provides in spades the high-octane sound PM5K have delivered in years past. Surprisingly, the band members present here their first-ever ballad titled “I Want To Kill You,” which not only complements its sonic brethren but also proves to be haunting, touching, and addictive. “I Can’t Fucking Hear You” further extends their sound.
To quote an understated lyric from Builders of the Future, “We’ll bring a motherfucking bomb to a fucking knife fight.”
1. Invade, Destroy, Repeat
2. We Want It All
3. How To Be A Human
4. You’re Gonna Love It, If You Like It Or Not
5. Builders Of The Future
6. I Want To Kill You
7. Modern World
8. Live It Up Before You’re Dead [Explicit]
9. I Can’t Fucking Hear You [Explicit]
10. Evil World
5 out of 5