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Album Review

THE WHITE LIGHT MACHINE
Prayer For a Fuller Vengeance

God knows what they're feeding them up in Canada. First, Uncle Sinner sneaks across the border with an unlikely stew of swamp gas and corn whiskey, sounding like he (they) is (are) scratching a living amidst scrub brush on the desolate tundra, and now The White Light Machine plugs itself into the international wall socket, channeling music and sounds through large industrial fans. To hell with the Great Wall of Mexico (I laugh at the supposed intelligent design of THAT and wish conservatives the hell they deserve), let us stop the rot from the Great White North! Ignore the fact that it is fresh and creative as anything we Americans have. Ignore the influences of every truly modern creative force we've had over the past forty years and more. Tell you what. Let us have more Beatles and Lady Gaga and Nashville Country---- God knows we can't live without the garbage spewed by the likes of a Toby Keith in this world run amok. May the Gods of Fashion who made the patent leather cowboy hat and the slick leather duster suffer the fates of hell, too. We are no less than Howard the Duck, trapped in a world we never made. And yet... and yet... there is hope. There is The White Light Machine.

You need not ask who they are, for they are a 'he'. One Fuller Vengeance, to be precise, and no, that is not his real name but the name I choose to use, for this is Vengeance at his fullest and I love it. How can you not love a song called Prayer for Fuller Vengeance, a futuristic stomp through everything mechanic and yet everything human--- virtually a soundtrack for the workers' march into the yaw of The Machine in that classic movie, Metropolis. One need not strain the imagination with lyrics like

I'm like a power plant
I'm like a power plant
Make it right
Take a mood in
Make it bright
Making moves in the middle of the night

All the lines are down
The signal's lost somehow
Ragin' noon and
Ragin' down
Ragin' for us in the middle of sound

Erase my memory
So that I can see
What I got from
What I lost
And what it means to be the motherfuckin' boss

Yeah, I'm angry now
I'm like a power plant

And it goes on, full on chords, raw guitar leads, brash power spewing and throbbing and God knows what else. I mean, if nothing else, Vengeance gets an A+ just for the proper use of 'shit your brains'. I mean, you gotta love the attitude. And, no, I didn't get the lyrics precisely right, but the important parts speak for themselves.

This is music of urban blight from the cardboard boxes in the backalleys rich people refuse to acknowledge. It is dusty and filthy, with old food wrappers and gum sealed to the cement floors of abandoned buildings. This is what happens when you have to illegally plug in to the power grid to survive.

Before you run screaming for the cliff, be advised that this is not noise-as-art. This is music put together with the precision of the musician--- well, a musician outside the boundaries (and not just those of the United States). Maybe it takes a bit more concentration at first, like on Lux Magus, which begins with a dub (?) of spoken sorcery lesson over plodding thud and primal guitar strums and leading into primal chant and rhythm mash. Won't you get lost with me, Vengeance sings, but there is something which makes you step back, just to be sure. Not many people would buy a used car from this guy. Music, on the other hand.....

Vengeance has a number of tracks down and at one time had an EP scheduled for release, but it somehow was still born or something. To my knowledge, you can only get the music by heading to The White Light Machine's MySpace page and begging ol' Fuller Vengeance. I'm sure there are plans to make it available, but until it happens, it might behoove you to check it out and send him a little message of encouragement. If you do that, listen to the music he has posted on his player. Begin with Prayer for Fuller Vengeance and work your way through from there. If you don't get it, that's cool. But if you do, like I do, you're in for a real treat. Hell, while you're at it, give ol' Uncle Sinner a visit. I mean, they live in Winnipeg, for Chrissake. During the winter months, I am sure they are thankful for any visits they get. And, Fuller, don't be surprised if one day you answer a knock on your door and find me standing there. Some people I have to see to believe and you're slowly working your way up my list.

Frank O. Gutch Jr.

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