Apoptygma Bezerk – APBL2000

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Album Review by Mark Bayross

Norway’s darkpoptastic Apoptygma Bezerk are no strangers to the live album. Two years ago, they released APBL98, wherein beefed up live renditions of their classics were interspersed with audio clips of the band mucking around, playing with the samplers and generally creating a whole ‘documentary’ feel.

This time around, the documentary comes in the form of a ‘road movie’ on DVD and video (complete with trippy visuals and a number of musical cameos), while the live album is a more straightforward recorded set.

APBL2000 benefits from the sheer variety and catchiness of Apoptygma’s newer material; most of the setlist comes from their latest album,WELCOME TO EARTH – STARSIGN, ECLIPSE, PARANOIA, FADE TO BLACK and SOULTAKER all combine thumping rhythms with crunchy guitars and dangerously infectious tunes. When you add gems like NON-STOP VIOLENCE, BITCH and a seriously funked-up MOURN, you have the makings of an exhilarating live experience.

The album is completed by the beautifully blissed-out KATHY’S SONG, the spine-tingling STITCH, and the Kraftwerk-meets-Underworld B-side BEATBOX. My only gripe is that the guitars on the album lack a bit of the punch they have in the film, and that the epic LOVE NEVER DIES (included to stunning effect in the film) is missing, but then it was on APBL98 so I’d advise you to go get that too.

5 stars