Scorn Plan B
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It appears that even with as low-profile as Scorn has been in the modern music scene, even from the beginning, Mick Harris's mainstay project only manages to grow further and further away from the uninterested ears of the casual American listener. I find this to be such a shame as this new release, which came out in August of 2002 and finally found its way into import shops, is a fine addition to the body of work already present.

For those uninitiated to Scorn, the project is run by one man, Mick Harris, who lays down layers of music and sound to create patterned aural soundscapes constructed with beats (be they electronic or live), heavy-end bass, and a variety of other audio sources pieced together to create a collection of tracks that are both interesting and many times complex. Unlike Greetings From Birmingham and Imaginara Award, this album is less brash and provides far more organic elements to help break up the heavy electronic tones that act as a pulse.

Scorn fans will find a lot more subtlety in this album as many tracks, like Black Belt and Boss, don't start off with the main beat that ends up supporting the body of the tracks. A lot of ambient tones are thrown in to offset some nice beat-work. Hints of Zander and even Gyral turn up throughout the 11 tracks.

There are a number of tracks here worth noting - Table of Charges provides a fine balance between the laidback beat and the heavy electronic bass lines used to pace the track. This is followed by the very subdued Put Your Weight On It, which opens with an almost formless ambience that slowly finds shape. Boss is a hearty track with a great live drum track accented with a quickly paced bass line.

One of the nicer aspects to the album is the inclusion of a piano track, even if in a more disturbingly off-tone presentation, in songs like Dangler and Table of Charges. Music fans who love some heavy bass pounding will enjoy this album, most noteably songs like Way It Is and The Snow Hill. There's more than enough variety here to give each track their own defined personality.

Plan B provides probably the best offering by Scorn since Zander, and arguably even before then. A lot of the songs hail back to previous albums but still manage to fit into the structure of the album without compromising the heart of this new album. If you have ever enjoyed Scorn before, you should try to find this album.

- - Vane

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