The industrial techno-rock duo Cubanate have announced the release of their first new music in over two decades in the form of an EP entitled ‘Kolossus’. It follows their ‘Brutalism’ retrospective collection in 2017 and a brief return to live action for the first time since the late 1990’s to promote it.

The new EP contains five new songs plus remixes of the title track by Rhys Fulber (Front Line Assembly, Delerium, Conjure One) and DROWND. Out on 7th June, it will be previewed at a co-headlining London date with PIG on 1st, plus an appearance at the Wave Gotik Treffen festival in Leipzig, Germany. Discussing his working relationship with guitarist Phil Barry, front man Marc Heal states that they had started thinking about writing new material after the positive reaction to their initial comeback shows, but as they live on separate continents these days (Heal is currently based in San Francisco while Barry is in Cambridgeshire) “that’s more difficult than it sounds. Of course, these days you can send each other files, swap ideas across email instantly. But that’s not it. You start to realise that ‘being in a band’ is actually about sharing a vision and indeed a method of working. That’s much easier when you’re hanging out together, seeing other bands, sharing inspiration. All that stuff is easier when you’re younger, I think. However, we decided that we were definitely, absolutely going to release something. Whatever we came up with, it was going out. It was the only way, otherwise we’d have been noodling around for another twenty years. We decided that an EP would be a manageable target.”

Continuing, he explains “I set up a vocal booth in Palo Alto and sketched out the ideas. Phil took them forwards in Cambridge and added guitar. Once I heard that I added some more vocals and tweaked the structure before he then finished the mixes. We’re pleased with the results but I feel we will get stronger now we’ve done these five tracks. It’s a psychological barrier. The EP still sounds like us but inevitably we’re older and hopefully wiser. The wisdom thing is tricky, because a lot of early Cubanate was about relishing a ride towards self-destruction. It’s still like that, but smarter. These days we’re more confident that we can do whatever we want, both musically and lyrically. So long as it keeps being fun and we think we can keep being nasty, we’ll keep doing it.”

Out on June 7th on Armalyte Industries.

Pre-order link

The techno-rock crossover music made by Cubanate in the 1990’s was both controversial and influential. They were one of the few ‘Industrial’ bands to cross over to mainstream audiences and were regular fixtures in publications as diverse as Kerrang! and Melody Maker, as well as on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball.They toured with acts such as Front 242, Gary Numan, The Sisters of Mercy and Front Line Assembly, while their songs have appeared in film, TV and game soundtracks.
Formed in the summer of 1992 as a four piece centred around Marc Heal (vocals) and Phil Barry (guitar), their early sound fused the rhythms of the then nascent techno scene with the lo-fi grunge rock sound emanating from the US. Although the band later became adopted by Goth audiences, early Cubanate was more influenced by Joey Beltram, Baby Ford and Nirvana.
Following a UK tour with electronic duo Sheep on Drugs, they signed to the Berlin based Dynamica label and released their debut album, ‘Antimatter’ (1993), which included the single ‘Body Burn’ (heard years later in the final series of ‘The Sopranos’). In 1994, they were paired with extreme metal outfit Carcass for what turned out to be a notoriously violent UK tour. Heal’s antagonistic on-stage style resulted in death threats and an on-air confrontation with Radio 1 Rock Show host Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden).
The second Cubanate album, ‘Cyberia’ (1995), featured the single ‘Oxyacetylene’, which also featured on the 1996 compilation album ‘Mortal Kombat’ and was then used as the theme tune of the PlayStation game ‘Gran Turismo’. It is regularly touted as one of the definitive Industrial songs of all time. The band’s third album, ‘Barbarossa’ (1996) contained the single ‘Joy’ and was promoted with high profile live dates supporting Gary Numan, Rammstein, The Sisters of Mercy and Front 242. Heal struck up a friendship at this time with Jean-Luc De Meyer of Front 242 and the pair subsequently released two albums as C-Tec.

In 1997, seeking a change of label and direction, Cubanate signed to Wax Trax! for what was to be their final album to date, ‘Interference’ (1998). Splitting in 2000 but reforming in September 2016 for a set at the Cold Waves Festival in Chicago, they subsequently played several UK and North American dates in 2017 to promote a retrospective compilation entitled ‘Brutalism’.

Live dates
01.06.19 LONDON Elektrowerkz (with PIG)
07.06.19 LEIPZIG Wave Gotik Treffen