Review

Archetype

The Ick

Knekelhuis • 2024

Leonard Prochazka likes it dark. As »Geier Aus Stahl« he also performed at the Knekelhuis, but now he’s called Archetype. He stays in the dark because it’s so cosy. But where »Geier Aus Stahl« still built a certain humorous double bottom into the music, Archetype dedicates himself even more decidedly to the morbid. The rhythms are more subtle, and the music doesn’t take place in the dimly lit arena, but in the hopeless, impenetrable darkness. 

Take the opener »Archetype«, which is reminiscent of Kevin Richard Martin’s uncomfortable »Sirens« from 2019, but also of Pessimists’ creeping, menacing dubstep techno tracks from the same year. In fact, Archetype’s sound goes back much further, to the eighties and nineties. It’s influenced by EBM, gothic, industrial and other genres that didn’t see music as a fun medium back then. Prochazka sees himself as a one-man band and not only stages pure melodic claustrophobia, but also uses his vocal cords for this purpose. This works just as well on songs like »The Trickster«, where he only speaks lines like »Your heart is mine«. The apocalyptic mood of the album is conveyed even better on the epic »Mental Is True«, on which Prochazka laments in the style of a master of ceremonies over towering, plastically produced beats, dragging himself even deeper into perdition.