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Non-Prog CD Reviews

My Ruin

Speak and Destroy

Review by Gary Hill

My Ruin is Tairrie B.'s newest project. Tairrie got her start as a rapper and went on to be in bands Manhole and Tura Satana. She is joined on this project by a host of musicians. This first disc by the band, a second is on the way, is a great release that covers a lot of varied musical territory. The underlying focus of the music is Gothic in nature, but the sound runs the gamut from rap to techno to electronic to solid modern metal, many times in the course of one song. If you are a fan of exciting experimental, hard-edged music, this may be a great disc for you to pick up. One word of warning, though, much of the lyrical content is graphic and adult in nature, and many of the references are quite anti-Christian. So, if those types of lyrics are objectionable to you, this would be a good one to pass on.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: The Early Years Volume 4 at

Track by Track Review
A short narrative, as if it were a book reading, this one sets a good self-depreciating tone for the disc. "The musicians begin to tune up, although it seemed a pointless exercise considering the type of music they were going to play."
A great techno groove, the lyrics on this one, as most of the disc, are delivered in a spoken fashion and are a declarative of female power and Tarrie's personal power.
Preacher (Live)
Hard edged and frantic, this one almost feels a bit like an updating of Marianne Faithful's Broken English era. Granted, this one gets much harder than that, but the spoken word verses seem to call that sound to mind.
Tainted Love (Remix)
A cover of the classic Soft Cell song, this one is a hard-edged dirge with a great texture. The last chorus is screamed and quite dramatic. The cut then drops to a short atmospheric segment to end.
Blasphemous Girl
With a musical intro mode that is kind of one part Black Sabbath and one part Sex Pistols, this cut quickly changes gear to a very hard edged modern dark metal. Who says women can't do this genre? Certainly no one who has heard this disc. The cut changes gear to a slower segment, then a new, very tasty, riff brings it back to the place it came from. The instrumental break brings back more Sabbath type influences.
Close Your Eyes
Atmospheric tones with spoken lyrics that are almost like a female Jim Morrison make up the early portions of this cut, slowly building. The chorus has a very meaty and accessible metal mode. The verse returns to the earlier styles. This is a very strong cut. It drops to an instrumental break with a great, almost new waveish progression. This cut somewhat calls to mind Concrete Blonde.
With a verse in a solid, mellower rock mode, the chorus on this one is in the extreme dark modern metal mode.
Horrible Pain (Within My Heart)
This cut feels a bit like a spoken word Lords of The New Church cut called "Dreams and Desires".
Dark, atmospheric tones make up the majority of this cut. The spoken/shouted vocals are the primary focal point of this cut. Although the music gets quite hard edged at time, it is low in the mix; giving a distant texture to it and making it seem less heavy.
Sick With It
This one is harder edged, no-apologies, scream metal.
My Beautiful Flower
A great mellow texture, feeling almost Peter Gabrielish begins this, and then it moves to a more modern electronic style. It has some great textures and builds quite well and is a very evocative piece. Very late it moves into the harder modern metal screamy mode, but it is a natural progression of the maturation of the composition. This one also feels a little like Lords of the New Church, but some of the keyboard textures even seem a little Hawkwindish.
Starting with a Sabbathesque riff, this is a down and dirty cut that really feels a lot like the current rap-rock trend, while not really fitting that mold in other ways.
June 10th
A rather creepy and very pretty cut, this sedate number is a great breather and change of pace. It is a very evocative song about love lost and emotion just flows out of it. The lyrics even include an Iron Maiden reference. This is my favorite track on the disc. "My co-conspirator, My executioner, My sacrificial lamb, My friend, My lover, My martyr, Are you my enemy now? You once asked me, 'Is existence all we share?', You tell me when you remember June 10th, Do you remember June 10th?"
This one is brutal hard-edged modern metal.
Techno in nature, this one gets a bit hard edged, but is quite accessible, particularly in the chorus and definitely catchy. It is a very strong piece.
With a great, brief, spooky intro, this cut is a dark metal number with an awesome riff.
Featuring the voice from the first cut, this is a continuation of that narrative.
Beware of God
This one is simply a short sound byte collage of TV evangelism.
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