IAMX - Metanoia

Wrap yourself up in the warmth of darkness, turn out the lights, ignite some incense, inflame a candle, pour a glass of absinthe, and sink into the depths of the new IAMX creation, Metanoia.

Sparks form shapes as lightning blazes across the night sky.  Fog snakes through the iron bars encasing the neighboring cemetery as the cathedral flames produce smoke blanketing the area in a palatable darkness.  With hands outstretched we feel our way through the crowd that has gathered.  Each encounter, every touch, we don't know if we are finding a friend or a foe.  Faces, arms, chests, other hands... also searching for comfort, safety, familiarity.  

Such are the sensations from an IAMX album.  I am in awe of Chris Corner's ability to touch and explore such private thoughts and feelings, not just once, but again and again (over seven albums).  His songs are painful, honest, awakening, searching, and healing.  You can certainly play his albums loud and dance, drive, or enjoy with others; however, savored  alone and in darkness is my first choice.

  1. No Maker Made Me - Starting off with a bang, Chris jumps right into a controversial topic - I'm not sure if he is totally atheistic - but I interpret this song for myself as one that simple states that we are separate creatures that although potentially conceived by a creator we have free will and therefore make ourselves for ourselves as we choose.
  2. Happiness - Sounding ironic and yet truthful we explore what makes or should make us happy - a great dance floor filler.
  3. North Star - Psychedelic and mind expanding; fast paced and energizing.
  4. Say Hello Melancholia - A dirge march ballad that really defines the best of what I like about IAMX - it sings to the heart, the mind, and the soul.  Taps into those feelings of loneliness, longing, and the search for purpose and meaning.
  5. The Background Noise - In a song title that sounds like it will be a filler track, lies one of the most insightful and self-searching explorations of why people have a hard time being content and happy for any length of time without beginning to question and search for more.
  6. Insomnia - We spend a huge portion of our life sleeping, but is it useful or wasteful time spent.  Are we maximizing our waking hours.  Why is it that we find contemplation of many  emotional, soul-searching topics is easier at night by prolonging the hours we do not sleep?  
  7. Look Outside - a lovely track, somewhat a breather from the heavy topics explored so far.
  8. Oh Cruel Darkness Embrace Me - Sexy beat, angry and unrelenting, 
  9. Aphrodisiac - More sex appeal on display, a proper job of it too.  This song is bitchiness personified.  If you get the impulse to crawl along the floor and seduce a total stranger you can blame getting swept up in the music ( ! )
  10. Surrender - We return to serious topics - sometimes we just want to give in to temptation and complacency.
  11. Wildest Wind - Beautiful and haunting. 
It is very hard to listen to this album only once at a time, it compels you to want to hit repeat after every listen - I have found myself listening to it 4 or 5 times in one evening and finally having to force myself to turn it off and go to sleep.

I am rather sad this review was so delayed.  I had the digital tracks on release day but wanted to wait for the vinyl.  What a wait it was as well -  due to production delays, and then postal delays... and then the packaging wasn't very impressive.  I expected more from someone who is so visually and musically creative.  The gatefold has nice photography, but that's it.  No quality in the type of paper, a plain white inner sleeve, nothing unusual in the vinyl... and I guess the fuel to get my review up faded.  


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