January 17, 2016

Author & Punisher - Melk en Honing

By Calen Henry.

Artwork by Russell MacEwan / Force Majeure Art

Tristan Shone’s Author & Punisher might be the most literally metal band in existence. Shone makes his brand of industrial metal almost exclusively with custom machines he designs and fabricates.

The sonic character of Shone’s machines is wholly unique, but oddly familiar. The machines have bizarre metallic sonic palettes but are employed to replicate the guitar and drum assault of “normal” industrial music. That coupled with Shone’s Marilyn Manson style shout-singing make for “comfortable” music with an abrasive undercurrent unlike anything else.

If there’s a complaint to be leveraged it’s that over the course of an entire album the music can blur together somewhat, but this could be a personal observation coming from someone who isn’t entrenched in the industrial sound.

Photos by Jason Ernst

The music itself is a straightforward mix of Godflesh style industrial droning and 90s Nine Inch Nails melodic industrial music. But that's part of what makes Melk en Honing so successful. It’s sonically adventurous but musically straightforward.

Shone consciously reigns in the musical experimentation instead crafting memorable songs with distinct instrumental and vocal hooks and letting the unique sonic texture of his machines shine through. It’s a much more successful approach than experimenting with both the sounds and the music. The listener is able to immediately “get” the music to the point where the provenance of the machines is icing on the cake rather than the main attraction.

If you prefer a different electronic approach to machine industrial metal there’s always Pretty Eight Machine.

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