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Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
(Limited Edition Re-Release)
Artist: Argyle Park
Label: Retroactive Records
Length: 21 tracks (16 songs); 65:48
In the spring of 1996, I first heard an Argyle Park song on the radio. "Doomsayer" intrigued me, and I immediately went out to try to find the album. Unfortunately, by this point, R.E.X. Records had closed their doors, and the _Misguided_ CD was already difficult to find. While I continued to search used music stores and the like, I settled for a dubbed cassette copy, courtesy of a fellow youth group member, the guy responsible for introducing me to both Mortal and Circle of Dust.
Finally, nearly nine years after its release on an unprepared Christian music community, Argyle Park's classic album Misguided is back on CD, in a release that is even better than the original R.E.X. version. New bonus material includes full lyric sheets, a definite plus when listening to music that is this instrumentally intense; some AP facts, including the real names of the whole cast of characters found in the credits; Flaming Fish Music's review of the CD; and HM Magazine's interview with Buka.
The industrial music community tends to appear everywhere on each other's albums. Members of Mortal, Chatterbox, and Klank all make appearances here. Tommy Victor of Prong collaborates on both "Skin Shed" and "Doomsayer," while "King" Mark Salomon (Stavesacre, Outer Circle, The Crucified) lends his vocal talents and lyrical skills to a couple of tracks.
This re-release is mistracked; "Skin Shed" is spread over three tracks rather than a single. This doesn't affect play on a normal CD player, but if you have a player that inserts silence between tracks, this will become very annoying. The re-release includes the bonus tracks from the original version, minus the blank tracks. A couple of these tracks are merely fun stuff, like Circle of Dust bassist Og's rendition of "Bang a Gong." The real gem among the hidden tracks is the spoken word piece that was excised from the end of "Doomsayer."
My favorite track on the album is still the first one I heard. "Doomsayer" is powerful, blunt, and heavy. As the world is falling all around him, Mark Saloman cries out for the Spirit of God to move in him, mobilizing him for the time at hand.
This album was never intended to speak to everyone, and it still won't. It's dark and depressing at times. AP was accused at the time of glorifying the enemy rather than God. But, as tracks such as "Doomsayer" bring out, there is a glimmer of hope. The world may be dark and cold, but the light and fire of God are coming.
For those who have been long-time fans of Klay Scott's work and who haven't heard this album, or for those who have been waiting for its re-emergence on CD, go get this one.
Josh Marihugh 6/7/2004