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placeboeffect gargoyles
Artist: Placebo Effect
Title: Gargoyles & Galleries
Genre: EBM / Electro
Release Date: 12th August 2011
Label: Infacted Recordings

Album Review

PLACEBO EFFECT was once upon a time a German dark electro / EBM band, their sound akin to FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY and/or FRONT 242. And though its members had gone off to other projects, Infacted Recordings is bringing out ‘Gargoyles & Galleries’, an album of re-mastered material, the first fourteen tracks having comprised their first album ‘Galleries of Pain’ (1992) and the rest of the songs having been on the demo tape ‘Gargoyles’ (1990). It is interesting that back then the band was dismissed as a SKINNY PUPPY clone by the purists of music. It isn’t that there aren’t some similes in their sound but much more importantly what PLACEBO EFFECT had in common with SKINNY PUPPY was in the building of atmosphere within the songs. If someone wants to describe the PLACEBO EFFECT in terms of movies the overall feeling will be that PLACEBO EFFECT were connected somehow with a ‘Hellraiser’ filmed by David Lynch and not of let’s say the meat parties of the ‘Blade’. They managed to instil a fear of the future, and of the self into their songs giving the sense that the narrator is in a way frozen from the spectacle or if he’s angry that his yells are addressed to a deaf torturer. The result is that today their sound is surprisingly fresh.

Let’s describe some of the songs to be found here. ‘Mystress’ opens the album and sets the tone of it as ‘Mystress’ is at the same time pronounced as mistress and my-stress. The agony and the bleakness of Axel Machens are put here quite straight forwardly. And ‘Intoxication’ is dressed up like a punitive horror, with its slow tempo and the bells ringing throughout. This song is also the intro of ‘Psychotrauma’ which sounds like minimal Industrial conveying the despair with ease. One of the best songs in this CD is ‘Psychological Drama’; it builds a nonlinear atmosphere of terror and despair brilliantly to say the least! ‘Move’ is a characteristically “dirty” industrial song and this feeling only becomes stronger with the use of a drill giving a glimpse of EISTURZENDE NEUBAUTEN at it. The remix of this song is uplifting, making it perfect for sending you directly into a dance floor! Especially for ‘Move’ it is really interesting for someone to see the differences of an analogous lyrical theme with COMBICHRIST’s ‘Get Your Body Beat’ how PLACEBO EFFECT dealt with the subject matter back in 1990 and the angst of expressing it.

The ‘Galleries Of Pain’ (why they’ve changed the ‘Galery of Pain’ of the original?!) opens up with Bernard Hermann’s score from Hitchcock’s ‘Psycho’ and again, the older one is the grooviest whilst the newest is the kind of remix that respects the original song and emphasises on different aspects of it. ‘Last Day’ is built upon PINK FLOYD’s ‘Another Brick In The Wall Pt 1’ and as an ironic and militaristic aspect of ‘Johnny Took His Gun’ - if you remember the scenes from ‘One’ of METALLICA. This album should not be picked up only by those who love going back in time and picking up on the early sound to reminisce, but to all others. It is a band that deserves to be rediscovered and in reasonable prices. The bad news is that it is limited in only 1,000 copies...


01. Mystress – 3.36
02. Intoxication – 2.00
03. Psychotrauma – 4.41
04. Poison Tree – 2.59
05. Brain Entrophy – 2.09
06. Galleries of Pain (Bloody Pain remix) – 7.41
07. Intersection – 1.02
08. Move (Animation Remix) – 4.10
09. Psychological Drama – 3.07
10. Devoid Soul (Salvation Remix) – 5.14
11. Autopsia – 1.44
12. Agony of Mind – 5.34
13. Dawn and Death – 3.49
14. Lumph – 3.51
15. Move – 3.46
16. Galleries of Pain – 5.06
17. Last Day – 4.25
18. Hard Work – 4.48


Axel Machens
Christoph Kunze
Achim Windel


Cover Picture

placeboeffect gargoyles


Music: 8
Sound: 9
Total: 8.5 / 10

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