Is This Hyperreal?
Label: Digital Hardcore Recordings
Don't assume that the title is a strictly rhetorical question. In the 12 years since Atari Teenage Riot's last album, the culture has shifted enough that they may well feel like a rave-punk Rip Van Winkle. Their industrial-strength techno and hardcore attitude once signified a mixture of raging nihilism, po-mo irony and good old-fashioned German leftism; today, bands like Sleigh Bells ply similar sounds in commercials for Honda. ATR, meanwhile, soldier on, with jackhammer beats, skull-crushing guitars and lots of shouting. Like any midlife crisis, it's kind of endearing.