Review+Interview: PreEmptive Strike 0.1 - Redeclaration Of War


PreEmptive strike 0.1 return with a concept release that could also be considered a 'best of' offering. This is a great release of aggressive energy and vibrant synthetics showcasing an incredible time frame for industrial. These tracks are previous songs revamped or since unreleased and are worthy of another listen without a doubt.

 

For the first time a PREEMPTIVE STRIKE 0.1 release in cassette format which includes new unreleased versions of songs written during the period 2006-2015 and initially released by Infacted Recordings plus a brand new track. The band has chosen 5 of its biggest hits which always play in their live set plus a new unreleased track that was found in the archives of Yiannis Dseq. With absolute respect to the original versions, Jim the Blaster recorded new vocals and Yiannis Dseq added additional synths. All tracks have been reproduced by Yiannis Dseq!


THE BASE WAS OVERRUN: A new track that Yiannis Dseq wrote in 2014 but never found the way for Epos V as the style was totally different. Hellish dark with a slow unconventional rhythm and old school dark electro references is the ideal way to open this release.


LETHAL DEFENCE SYSTEMS: It was a song that due to its success, "everything started" for PES01 and the doors to the electro industrial scene opened for them! Based on a version that appeared in their DEMO 2005 but never found the way to our debut.


PREEMPTIVE STRIKE: This song was initially appeared to "EXTINCTION REPROGRAMMED" cd in 2008, and is still today one of the highlights in their live performances. A real trademark song for the band!


DECLARATION OF WAR (2021 ENGLISH VERSION): Initially appeared in ‘’THE KOSMOKRATOR’’ cd 2010 as KRIEGSERKLARUNG 1955 with vocals in German language. Still their most successful song as it remained 7 weeks in the DAC and GEWC and climbed until position 7! Now Jim the Blaster has replaced all the German lyrics with English!


ROBOTIC DISINTEGRATOR: Initially appeared in "THE KOSMOKRATOR" cd 2010 including Guest vocals by Deranged Psyche from NEBULA H/EX-ES. Now his parts are replaced by Jim the Blaster’s vocals and surely this song remains one of their best and one of their most "in your face" songs they have ever written!


EPOS OF THE ARGONAUTS (DARK MIX): Initially appeared in "Epos V" cd (2015) as a song with many Folk elements including Greek language and a Cretan lyra player. This is a totally different version keen to old school dark electro!!


PreEmptive Strike 0.1 is a Greek harsh EBM band formed in Agios Nikolaos, Crete, Greece in 2002 by Jim 'The Blaster' and Cryon. They combed the harsh EBM sound with powerful melodies, eastern elements and sci-fi thematology. On 2015 Yiannis Dseq joined the band and since 2020 the band has become a duo with Jim 'The Blaster' and Yiannis Dseq producing new material.

 
 

Interview


Q. Hi Jim, you've had quite a few changes in the band since 2019 and your last live performance was Belgium in 2020, what has happened with the band since then and are there any plans for new shows soon?


JIM: Really everything changed in the band since October 2019 and the release of “Progeny of the Technovore”; Then George Klontzas (currently TEKNOVORE) and a founding member of PREEMPTIVE STRIKE 0.1 left the band. Since then we have had a new line-up (which I mention below) we released again on DWA, the mcd “The Dread Files” in the summer of 2020. Unfortunately, since then DWA remains (mainly due to Covid19) a ghost label and due to this in the summer of 2021 we decided to release the only tape work “Redeclaration of War 2006-2015” in which there are some of our songs from the golden period of the band (especially 2006-2010) re-recorded. It was a release for our die-hard fans, but also a reason to stay in the spotlight….


As regards shows after the last one in Belgium the things are much worse. We tried to book some shows abroad but nothing happens. I could easily arrange something in our island but I don’t think that it is worth doing….


Q. Who is in the band now, how did you start working together, and what are your musical backgrounds before Preemptive Strike 0.1?


JIM: From October 2019 is me “Jim the Blaster”: vocals, lyrics, drum programming, samples and “Yiannis Dseq”: synth programming, production. Yiannis joined the band back in 2013 and we were a trio then. As regards me in my teens and until my early 20s, I was a drummer in metal bands with some of them to have a career later(ie

HORIZON’S END and DEVISER). Then in 2001 I was establish the death industrial band EXTINCTION REPROGRAMMED and a little bit later the industrial metal band TRANSMITTED TERRORPULSE.


Yiannis: My musical background is a combination of genres, basically of Metal and Electronic music. Mainly death metal and with concern to the electronic scene I’ve mostly been in EBM, Industrial Trance, and Techno.

Q. Which song on this release were you most happy to take another look at and include for a modern day audience?


JIM: It was definitely the song “Robotic Disintegrator”. It has always been one of my favourite songs of the band and we played it constantly on our gigs. Of course it's original form was completely different and this was because Deranged Psyche from NEBULA H, FUZE BOX MACHINE sang in the verses but also because in the same old version my vocals had come out chaotically mainly due the (wrong) way I sang that period. So catching the song from the beginning everything was done exactly as it had to be done to make it perfect! In fact in this song we’ve made the most changes compared to the original. And I clearly consider it the best track of “Redeclaration of War”!


Q. Do you have any new music in the works, maybe even working towards a new album?


JIM: Yes we have already finished two new tracks plus 2 cover versions. As for a new album, I don’t know…. As I've always said I don’t find any reason to write new music without been able to present this material live. In fact, that was the reason

we changed the band line up because of the exact opposite view on live shows.

I have also sworn repeatedly that I would never write a single note, not a single lyric since we were in quarantine because of Covid19. And I kept my word!! What was written in the “Dread Files” and in “Redeclaration of War” has been written since society opened again and I was not locked in the house, writing music in order to escape from my misery.

However as I said we have 2 new songs and maybe we will compose another 2 but we think that we should probably find a new European label to move to! Finally I would like to add that we make remixes with other bands from time to time.


Q. How has the sound and direction of the band changed over the years since you started and what direction do you expect to take in the future?


JIM: There is always a slogan that says: “PREEMPTIVE STRIKE 0.1 never release the same record again!” So even though our basis remains the industrial genre and sound, we have mixed it with different styles as dark electro (“Lethal Defence Systems”,

“Through the Astral Cold”, “The Dread Files”), aggrotech (“Extinction Reprogrammed”), goa trance(“Progeny of the Teknovore”), extreme metal with hard guitars(“Eternal Masters I+II”, “Pierce their Husk”), folk and traditional elements and organs(“The Kosmokrator”, “T.A.L.O.S” and most of all “Epos V”)!!!

So we change our style and music direction from record to record. But if I had to make a prediction I would say that we will continue to the pure dark electro style!!


Yiannis: I believe that each period of our life has different elements in general. This is reflected on the way I express myself through music. The main direction is for sure dark electronics but elements from techno, industrial and trance will always be there.


Q. Who have been your top three music inspirations of the past, and who are your current top three inspirations or favourite artists in the industrial world?


JIM: Very good question! When I started PREEMPTIVE STRIKE 0.1 my top 3 music inspirations were DECODED FEEDBACK, SITD, SUICIDE COMMANDO

and I will add also E-CRAFT.

Currently my top 3 industrial favourite bands are FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, NUMB, DECODED FEEDBACK and if we talk for all

time favourites I would added FEINFLUG and FUNKER VOGT (until “Companion in Crime” and the departure of Jens Castel)


Yiannis: As I’ve mentioned before, I find myself related to different sounds and styles according to the current period of my life. So during this period my main inspirations are HAUJOBB, RHYS FULBER, NOISE UNIT and also to mention DECODED FEEDBACK.


Q. Is there a favourite funny or important moment story from your music career you can tell us?


JIM: As regards important moments yes, it was in our gig in Belgium back in 2020 when I really felt proud and for the first time I saw so many people to ask for autographs and to dance like mad to our songs!

And I have a funny story to share with you as well: It was 2012 and 4 days before a festival I was playing football as a

goalkeeper and I cut the tendon of my little finger! When I saw it cut in 2 I thought, it's all over, I'm undergoing surgery, and the concerts are over, everything gone!

Eventually I tied it with bandages and it fixed itself. The concert went fine but my left hand was like a mummy from the so many bandages!!


Q. What life lessons has being in music taught you all, and what would you change about the scene if you could?


JIM: Being in music over 25 years taught me one and only thing: The only that counts in music scene is the GIGS!! Everything else is currently fake and digital! The views, the likes, the shares are all a lie!! Do you want to grow? Do concerts, otherwise you will remain nothing! You will remain a digital presence and then another digital

presence will listen to your music today but tomorrow you will be forgotten… But if they see you play live they will never forget you!


If I could change something yes I would like more print magazines to be published as the old glory days and of course to be able to organize festivals with smaller bands and not all the same and the same big ones…


Q. Anything you'd like to say to your fans?


PES0.1: We are still alive and we will write music if there aren’t new quarantines and if there are concerts on the horizon. Do you want a new album of PREEMPTIVE STRIKE 0.1? Go find your local promoters and suggest our band for a gig!! Then we will have a serious motivation to write a new album full of energy, emotion and

passion and not an uninspired and miserable one!!


Review

Starting off with 'The Base Was Overrun' makes for a chilling setting. Having been playing a lot of dystopia games recently, the softly spoken samples that has been added in to its beginning this time around about losing a base to an overwhelming attack, certainly creates quite the atmosphere! This track is both a calm before a storm and the quiet devastation after a previous one. You get a little lost somewhere in the middle of hope and despair as you sway softly to the beat.

'Lethal Defence Systems' is a nice stompy piece of industrial dance aggression with the signature cyber drum beats and the chillout sessions between, not quite one for the dancefloor with its tempo but definitely one that provides the ideal at home feel of industrial you want that mixes all of the good and heavy parts of industrial in to a smooth and easy listening piece.

"Resist, resist, resist and fight!" Of course this release would not be complete without the self titled 'Preemptive Strike'. It's one of those classic industrial rave like tracks that all of the last two decades did so well. Just the right amount of synths, samples, aggro vocals, drum loops, and section drops. A great piece that really does deserve another play or twelve!


'Declaration of war' strums out the military march drums and drill Sergeant-esque samples amongst the sirens, drums, and foreboding of warfare. A visceral aggrotech vocals backed up subtly by distorted guitars makes for a heavily destructive piece to damage dance floors to. Maybe not most reassuring track for the mind considering the way the world could end up very soon but at least it would make for a great soundtrack!


'Robotic Disintegrator' carries on with that same amazing aggrotech growl and dancefloor stomp vibe that we've all known and loved over the years. it's nice to hear that voice sample say 'JUGGERNAUGHT' again! I had almost forgotten about that great little hook in the track.


We are treated to an industrial telling of Greek Mythology in the form of Jason's Argonauts. This is a slower more progressive beat that again is an easy listening piece that can be both background industrial chillout, or turned up loud to get dancing to which makes for a fine balance.


Tracklist


The Base Was Overrun

Lethal Defence Systems (2002 Version)

Preemptive Strike (2021 Version)

Declaration Of War (2021 English Version)

Robotic Disintegrator (2021 Version)

Epos Of The Argonauts (Dark Mix)


Conclusion


This release is a really nice touch. It's always great when bands release unheard demos or mixes and give them a modern day production upgrade. Releasing in cassette format does bring out the retro collector vibe but as a digital release will certainly (Or at least should) put Preemptive Strike 0.1 back on DJ sets and playlists everywhere once more, which is where fan bases are made...


Scores


Technicality: 7.5/10

Soul factor: 7/10

Energy: 7.5/10

Vocals/Samples: 7/10

Re-play value: 6.5/10


Overall score: 7 / 10

 

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