Regis RegisIn A Syrian Tongue
Regis fever has risen over the past few months - only by a few degrees - but enough to keep the temperature on the correct level; so that his brilliant artistic momentum continues and the acknowledgement for his whole career will not fade. This new boiling point can be measured via several facts (his being part of hard techno super group Sandwell District, the reissues of his old material on Downwards - such as the album “Penetration” (2001), the recovery of shelved material like “Against Nature (11 Reclaimed Fragments)”, his double vinyl with Female, and even his remix for Raime's “This Foundry”), but nothing's hotter than this new 12” for one of the darkest labels of the moment, on which part of the angst of his best releases is recovered. You only need to check out the artwork for the limited edition vinyl (a bloke is approaching another person lying on the floor, a bodkin in his hand, at night) and how he seems to invoke the bad vibes and mental violence of the British Murder Boys days.
But there's something else placing Karl O’Connor at the centre of present-day techno, once again: his renunciation of obvious brutality and the constant search for subtle ways to transmit aggression. When listening to “Blood Witness”, it's obvious that the first made Regis slow down - focus all his energy on a precise blow at a weak point before delivering the final blow - as if, instead of boxing for dark clubs, he were now practicing kung fu blindfolded. The slow and intense beat is prolonged on the live version on the B-side (with the help of Mick Harris, alias Scorn, at the controls) and on “Blinding Horses” - another techno minefield in which the kick drum delivers the goods slowly, whilst disrupting the atmosphere with creeping noise and guitar distortion in the distance - thus returning to his origins in industrial music and closing the circle. There's Pain. There's Bile. There's Regis.