Industrial noise punks Uniform started their band after realizing that they lived on the same block in Greenpoint. Comprised of Ben Greenberg (of Hubble, The Men, Pygmy Shrews) and Michael Berdan (of Drunkdriver, York Factory Complaint, Believer/Law), the two have had many creative outlets over the years but in Uniform, they take the best parts of their previous outfits and convert them into a sonic assault, both invigorating and paralyzing.
Tomorrow, the duo celebrate the release of their first LP Perfect World with an extravagant release show at Queens venue Trans Pecos. The bill features a wide range of experimental acts, from Chris Hansel's power electronics stew Ligature to the hardcore slude of Rectal Hygienics. We caught up with Uniform's Ben Greenberg and Michael Berdan and asked the band to make us a playlist that was essentially the "soundtrack of the band." Here's what Ben had to say: "Here are songs that we think about all the time, not only with reference to Uniform, but songs that have stayed with us for most of our lives. We can keep coming back to them and they keep inspiring us in new ways. When you see one of us walking down the street, this is what's blasting through our headphones. The world can keep burning to death forever, music will always heal the inside."
Nihilist — Sentenced To Death
Swedish death metal to melt your heart. The group never recorded a proper full length but a collection of their demos entitled Nihilist (1987-1989) was released in 2005 on Threeman Recordings.
Primal Scream — Deep Hit
Of Morning Sun
Swirling space rock. Journalist James Brown once reported a now infamous story: the bandmates were arguing with one another about whether to get Vietnamese, Chinese or Indian. When one of Brown's colleagues asked them if they'd settle for a burger the band informed him: "It's heroin we're discussing, not food!"
Legendary accidental sound man Brian Eno teamed up with 2/3rds of Cluster on the album After the Heat. An essential kraut lounge song if there ever was a genre. "The Belldog" contains enough studio tricks to keep even the most techie of music heads happy.
Deep Wound — Lou's Anxiety Song
Early 80s speed punk from Westfield, MA featuring J Mascis and Lou Barlow of Dinosaur Jr, albiet the angrier teenage versions of themselves. Makes one wonder what Lou was so anxiety ridden about.
X Marks The Pedwalk — Look on This Side (The Blood)
Late 80s industrial from Germany, what one Front Page journalist called "the German Skinny Puppy." They sought to "lighten up the dark side of the human psyche."
Skinny Puppy - Cult
Speak of the devil: Skinny Puppy. "Cult" is a rather melodic and blue wave track from the Canadian industrial powerhouse. Off the album The Process, the song is about a psychotherapy cult from the 1960s known as The Process Church of the Final Judgement, which the band was introduced to by Throbbing Gristle’s Genesis P. Orridge.
Slave State — Divide & Conquer
Slave State were an early, short-lived, and but influential German power electronics group whose members would later go on to play in acts like The Electric Hellfire Club and My Life With The Thrill Kill Cult. Righteous track.
Henry Flynt — Celestial Power
Oscillating, sparse, Americana guitar jams. Flynt was a philosopher, avant-garde musician, and anti-art activist who called for cognitive nihilism in art, which meant a work had to be an object-critique of logic or mathematics or objective structure.
Thorr's Hammer - Norge
American/Norwegian death/doom. While the band was only around for six weeks (a particularly productive six weeks if you ask me) in the mid 90s, they would later do a handful of reunion shows, one in 2009 and another in 2010, and have not ruled out the possibility of making new music in the future.
Dr. Feelgood — She Does It Right
70s British bar rock. Choppy guitars and bluesy vocals. In spite of the singer's death in 1994 of lymphoma, a version of the band (featuring none of the original members...) continues to tour and record to this day. Why god, why?
Parade Ground — Moans
A Belgian band, formed by brothers Jean-Marc Pauly and Pierre Pauly in 1981. They were early pioneers of both the cold wave and EBM movements and give us a blissed ending to this epic playlist.