L.O.T.I.O.N. W​.​A​.​R. in the Digital Realm LP

The Valhalla of my sweetest dreams looks something like a dust-filled warehouse in which survivors of the apocalypse mutually exchange their wares, spoils, scavenges, and excesses. At the center of these festivities is a massive circle pit. Spiraling layers of punks, ravers, goths, heshers, and other survivors each dancing their own individual dance. The bass-heavy music filling this sacred hall is L.O.T.I.O.N. MULTINATIONAL CORPORTION’s W.A.R. in the Digital Realm on repeat, ad infinitum. Sure, there are a million reasons to hate this album, from having too many capitalized letters and periods, thereby making it a real bastard to type when searching online, or the insidiously infectious pop dance drivel of “Cybernetic Super Lover,” but somehow I keep coming back to this album again and again, Pavlovian-style. If you have no idea what I’m on about, imagine a talented  Sakevi Yokoyama impersonator singing over a perfectly orchestrated mashup of WHITE ZOMBIE, MINISTRY, DISCHARGE, and ’90s rave music. The good news: this album makes for a great entry point into the world of L.O.T.I.O.N. The bad news: you’ll find out when you play this.

L.O.T.I.O.N. World Wide W.E.B. LP

This is the one. This is the moment that L.O.T.I.O.N. evolved from an interesting concept into a fully-realized, impeccably executed cyber juggernaut. The base of early industrial is still there (they’ll never not owe a debt to SKINNY PUPPY) but that skeleton is fleshed out here with a range of new sounds and textures, including thrash riffing (“New Prosthetic Metal Arm”), industrial dance (the KMFDM-ish “Gabber Punks of Dabs/Downed Police Helicopter”), and even downtempo electronica (the wonderfully out of left field “I.C.B.M.” with its club-ready female vocals). If you’ve been a bit dubious of this band’s earlier output, put that aside because this is a new-model L.O.T.I.O.N., equally prepared to conquer fetid punk dives and velvet-roped VIP rooms. It probably goes without saying, but this packaging is fantastic as well, utilizing a Soldier of Fortune mag-styled sleeve and insert along with a fantastic poster featuring one of vocalist Alexander Heir’s best works yet.