ReviewsAVGMNT Gets Off To A Positive Start On Its...

AVGMNT Gets Off To A Positive Start On Its Debut Album


This past Friday, independent industrial/electronic music duo AVGMNT (pronounced Augment) released its debut album, SEQVENCES (pronounced Sequences) to the masses.  While it runs only 26 minutes across eight songs, the record is a presentation that the band’s established audiences and industrial metal fans alike will be quite interesting.  That is due in part to its featured musical arrangements, which will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record is of its own interest and will be examined a little later.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements and will also be examined later.  When it is considered alongside the album’s overall content, the whole becomes a presentation that proves itself one of the most unique independent albums released so far this year.

SEQVENCES, the debut album from the independent industrial/electronic metal duo AVGMNT, is a presentation that audiences will agree is an interesting first outing for the pair – Zach Wager and Fernando Ruiz.  That is because it is a presentation that takes the two genres in a wholly new musical direction over the course of its 26-minute run time, as its musical arrangements show.  Throughout the course of the record’s eight total songs, the use of the electronics, keyboards and percussion show the combined influence of more well-known acts, such as Marilyn Manson, Orgy, and even Nitzer Ebb.  At the same time, listeners can also make comparison to the duo’s fellow independent industrial/electronic act Blue Eyed Christ throughout the record.  The catch here is that while the noted influences are evident throughout the course of the album’s arrangements, they still very much hold their own alongside the works from those fellow acts.  One of the most notable songs that proves that is the late entry, ‘Burial.’  While it runs only a minute and 47 seconds, the use of the keyboards here really gives the song an 80s synthwave vibe.  The ethereal mood and sound presented through the song is so immersive even in its short run time and is so unlike much of what its counterparts have done in their own catalogs.  That is not to say that synthwave is something unheard of by any means, but in the bigger scene of the album here, it is definitely notable.

On another note, a song, such as ‘Copy <Waste>’ incorporates the industrial influence of Orgy while the vocals are just as comparable to the sound and delivery style of Marilyn Manson.  At the same time, the incorporation of the metal leaning here makes the song all the more interesting in regard to its overall presentation.  It definitely is a prime example of how the album’s arrangements are so able to maintain their own identity separate from the works of the works from the acts that have clearly influenced the pair.

‘SLVMTROPOLIS,’ which comes late in the album’s run, is yet another notable example of how the record’s musical content stands out.  The duo’s industrial leanings are just as present here as in the other songs that are included in the record.  The cyberpunk elements and the guest vocals from Jax Ayers add another unique touch to the whole what with the rhythmic manner in which she delivers the lyrics.  The song is another industrial/electronic work but again, its overall approach and sound here still boasts its own identity, keeping things engaging and entertaining.  Between these songs and the others that round out the record, the whole makes the album’s musical content original from beginning to end and in turn, reason enough for audiences to hear the album.

As much as the musical content featured in this album does to make it an interesting presentation, it is just part of what makes the record so engaging and entertaining.  The lyrical content that accompanies the record is of its own interest.  According to a statement recently released by the band about the album, it is apparently a concept record of sorts.

The statement reads in part, “Our debut album – SEQVENCES – introduces and explores the fictional city of Hexatropolis 2.0 through a loose narrative.  It was important for us to really establish a voice without limiting ourselves stylistically but maintain cohesion.  We felt by having this strong foundation, it gave us the freedom to still be thematic.  The state of our current dysfunctionally dystopian world was the biggest point of inspiration – just injected with a little (but not much) sci-fi flair.  A global pandemic and the resulting response can force some really hard re-evaluations about society as a whole.”  Now examining the world as dystopian and commenting on said situation of the world is not necessarily anything new.  Pharmacose has done this already as has Fear Factory and just so many other musical acts out there.  The manner in which AVGMNT’s members approached the topic here is what makes the lyrical content so intriguing.  Case in point is the record’s latest single, ‘Somatose.’

According to the duo, the subject in this song is in a drug-induced coma in his final hours.  The drugs are causing him to have various hallucinations, even in his comatose state.  The pair sks in quite the existential fashion about the theme, “What do we experience in our time of dying?  Is it a void?  Do we drift through space, do we travel between dimensions?”  This is asked, again, as the subject experiences all of the hallucinations even as his body shuts down.  It is really a deep topic that is certain to get listeners talking.  The man’s story is apparently just one of the many stories shared through the bigger story examining the fictional city.  ‘Null’ takes another look at the city and perhaps the role that people have played in its fate.

‘Null’ seems to be a commentary about how humanity has taken the world for granted and in turn ruined the planet.  From the mention of humanity’s decay to the very statement early on that “our actions made it clear/We don’t belong here” and so much more, the apparent commentary is relatively clear.  It is perhaps a larger macro look at the fictional city and how and where things stand as a result of what its people have done.  It is one more example of what makes the album’s lyrical content overall so interesting.

‘Human Skin,’ yet another of the album’s singles, is another example of what makes the album’s lyrical content so interesting.  In the case of this song, the theme seems to come across as being a commentary about how we as a society are conditioned to think we are not good enough, both from those close to us and by society itself.  That is just this critic’s interpretation.  If in fact that is the message being delivered, it is another theme that is not uncommon, but is still welcome.  Keeping that in mind, when the lyrical content featured here is considered along with the lyrical content in the album’s other singles and with the rest of the album’s songs, the whole undoubtedly gives audiences all the more reason to take in this album.

When the record’s musical and lyrical content is considered together it forms a solid foundation for the album on which rests the last (but hardly least) important element of all, the record’s production.  The overall production that went into SEQVENCES is so important because of its role in the album’s general effect.  There is a lot going on in each song, musically.  Between the keyboards, the guitars, electronics and vocals, what audiences get overall is eight songs whose impact is something of a wall of sound.  It hits audiences’ ears full on.  It would have been so easy for one aspect of each arrangement to overpower the others.  Thankfully though, that did not happen thanks to the attention paid to each part of each arrangement.  The result is that each song is expertly balanced with the others within each song.  In the bigger scheme of things, the result is that each song is unique from its counterparts within the album and equally engaging and entertaining.  Keeping that in mind, the overall result is that the production produces a positive general effect for the album.  That positive general effect from the aesthetic element pairs with the impact of the album’s content to make the whole a record that will appeal to the duo’s established audience base just as much as to industrial and electronic rock fans in general.

SEQVENCES, the debut album from AVGMNT, is an intriguing first outing from the industrial/electronic metal act.  That is due in part to its featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements take influence from the likes of Orgy, Marilyn Manson, Blue Eyed Christ and Nitzer Ebb and uses them to create eight immersive compositions that while similar in sound and style to works from those influences, are also unique to the duo.  In other words the arrangements give audiences the proverbial best of both worlds in each work.  The lyrical themes that accompany the album’s musical content are also of note here.  That is because they are apparently all part of a bigger, overarching concept record of sorts that examines a futuristic society and what has caused it to be in its current state.  The themes are all relevant to society today, even being about a future society.  All of this is reason enough also, to make the album worth hearing.  The record’s production rounds out its most important elements.  That is because of the attention paid to the finest details of each song.  The attention paid to each detail results in each song’s overall arrangement being so immersive in its rich wall of sound.  Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of SEQVENCES.  All things considered they make the album a mostly positive start for AVGMNT that gives hope for its future.

SEQVENCES is available now.  More information on the album is available along with all of AVGMNT’s latest news at: