Along with bands like Godflesh, Ministry, and KMFDM, Pitchshifter was among the first industrial metal acts to come around. Formed in 1989, the band released their appropriately titled debut "Industrial" in 1991. However, due to the band releasing their debut a couple years after Godflesh's groundbreaking Streetcleaner, Pitchshifter became commonly dismissed as Godflesh clones. Now, whenever a band does something new there's bound to be some copying, but like many of the thrash metal bands dismissed as clones back in the 80's, Pitchshifter simply wears their influences on this release.
The first thing to note, is that Pitchshifter is a bit more thrash-leaning than Godflesh. They've got the sludgy dissonance of Godflesh with the post-punk of Killing Joke also coming to mind, but they blend enough other elements to create their own sound. "Gravid Rage" is one of the highlights of the album, sounding like a clanking factory machine with Mark Clayden delivering gruff barks with much conviction. "Catharsis" stands out with the almost black metal-esque tremolo guitar picking that plays along with the sludgy dirge. "Skin Grip" has the forcefulness of Pantera, with a crushing groove that pummels the listener and vocals that sound straight out of the Fear Factory debut. "Eye" ends the album with an ominousness unique to the album, combined with the crushing riffing that is throughout the album.
If you're a Godflesh fan, you'll most likely enjoy this. The band do show their influences, and they would develop their own sound better on the next album, but Industrial gets the job done for what it is. All bands need a start to make something really great, and for Pitchshifter that would come soon after. Hope you found this review helpful, feel free to comment!