One year after releasing Grey Fades to Green, Oscar Mulero has been wronged: Black Propaganda is his revenge manifesto, its titles reading like a press release promising the threat of a hostile takeover. Bookended by a barricade of atmospheric anxiety, the timebomb ticking before monitoring the movements of the virus it has inseminated the album with, the Spaniard’s spine-chilling, coccyx-bruising minimal techno sounds scratchily hollowed out, all while moving to a wrecking ball’s swing, percussion pinging around warehouses like ball bearings fired by a shoot-to-kill paintballer.
So it’s an ugly scenario. Tensions are high, the air is thick with dissent, whispers become amplified and what were once scuttles barge out of nooks and crannies. “Disinformation” and “To Convince for the Untruth extend the proactive mission statement with booming assaults, cocking the jackhammers harder and expressing caged rage with the venom of a headbanging carnivore. “Intentionally False” downsizes, or rather evens out, with a funky, robotised hisser that keeps the overriding spite close like an enemy, and in an unofficial game of bad cop badder cop, “False Statements” is bracing, punishing, classic fixed-focus interrogation.
Its thrills lying in cracking white knuckles, Black Propaganda is as unfriendly a three quarters of an hour as you could wish for. But it’s great quality, and that’s no lie.
File under: Anstam, Trolley Route, Surgeon