Massive Ego – Church For The Malfunctioned

A massive output after only two years of the last album

Massive Ego - Church For The Malfunctioned

Album facts

Release Date: April 26th 2019
Label: Out Of Line
Genre: , , ,
Discogs: Link
Partially sounds like: VNV Nation, Covenant, Pet Shop Boys, And One

The new 'Massive Ego' release 'Church For The Malfunctioned' comes for me unex­pec­ted after only two years since their last album. Because, if you took a look at the dis­co­graphy, then you will real­ize that Massive Ego's out­put in over 20 years of band exist­ence isn't that much. My first big ques­tion was: "Did they taste blood after the suc­cess of 'Beautiful Suicide' or did the label Out Of Line Music push them to do a new album?". This ques­tion will be cla­ri­fied in an inter­view with Massive Ego on Electrozombies soon.

It begins with a blast

The first Single 'Digital Heroin' is a club clas­sic from the start. It's catchy, it has the right kick and power to keep goth legs on the dance floor mov­ing. A com­puter-gen­er­ated voice spells the char­ac­ters 'H E R O I N' which sounds like a ref­er­ence to the 'Pet Shop Boys' song 'Shopping' (Actually, 1987). The song title was also pro­nounced in almost the same style: 'S H O P P I N G'. If you know this PSB clas­sic, then you know what I mean. In any way, the track is blast­ing fant­ast­ic and lyr­ic­ally, I've to admit that I looked in a black mirror.

Forever lost in cyber space.
To win esteem not just the race.
Conscious wak­ing hours gone.
Computer and brain meld into one.
Lyrics from 'Digital Heroin' by Massive Ego

With a drift of clas­sic Electropop vibes 'Malfunctioning Me' comes around the corner. The song has a crisp and clear mid-tempo bass­line which moves for­ward with pro­gress. In the chor­us, you will hear some lovely, rough gui­tars, but over­all it's really Pop.

My per­son­al favour­ite on the album is 'My Religion Is Dark'. This might sound like a liv­ing goth­ic cliché, but this song is so much more. Sometimes lyr­ics get inter­rup­ted by a sar­cast­ic: 'Ha Ha Ha …' that stays in my mind for a long time after listen­ing to it. The beat is simply awe­some and makes me want to dance imme­di­ately. This dan­cing beat has def­in­itely got some DNA from the early 'Covenant' works of the 'Northern Light' and 'Skyshaper' era.

Industrial reflection

Rough gui­tars break the dan­cing mood and con­fuse the listen­er for a few seconds as the track 'Fallen From Grace' begins. A rough­er Industrial tend­ency flows through this song. However, this vari­ation is exactly what makes an album excit­ing and shapes it into an over­all work of art. Even if not every line is per­fectly drawn, the fin­ished pic­ture can be a masterpiece.

'Point Of No Return' is a clas­sic EBM influ­enced Synthpop song which drives on a bit faster pace. The chor­us in duet comes as catchy as pos­sible. You can sing along in the second chor­us like you do this every day in your shower. Lyrically, the song is quite simply built, but with enough life exper­i­ence, it gets a spe­cial reflect­ive­ness and it becomes mean­ing­ful with a taste of bit­ter­ness. I love that one a lot!

No turn­ing back, now I've learned.
You dis­ap­point me at every turn.
All the bridges you start to burn.
I'm at the point of no return.
Lyrics from 'No Point Of Return' by Massive Ego

The song "Super Selfie Superstar" begins like an opus by 'VNV Nation' and in the chor­us, it has the light­weight and sound­scape like And One's 'Movie Star'. Another great change to the many extremely dance­able tracks. 'Massive Ego' knows how to enter­tain the audience.

The path gets darker

Massive Ego 2019 (Photo by Kirsty Shoesmith)
Massive Ego 2019 (Photo by Kirsty Shoesmith)

Another super fant­ast­ic song is 'Killing For Gods' with a glor­i­ous chor­us and a great mes­sage in the lyr­ics. It has a little bit of an "in your face" atti­tude, but in my opin­ion, it's far away from the edge to be too goth­ic cheesy or to hurt anybody's feel­ings. A life without reli­gion is always a good state­ment and flat­ters also my per­son­al attitude.

If I would use the word 'harsh' in a Massive Ego review, I guess it would be the track 'Kill The Conspiracy'. Here, we have a lot of rough noise elec­tron­ics, a march­ing beat and very dom­in­at­ing vocals. It's a power-loaded and dance floor crush­ing, smash-hit.

Anyone who doesn't know the uber club hit 'Military Fashion Show' from And One should leave my web­site now and nev­er come back! 'Massive Ego' faced the chal­lenge to cov­er this awe­some song. Honestly, it isn't really a chal­lenge, because tech­nic­ally you can't do any­thing wrong with this club clas­sic. So, basic­ally, you hear the song 'Military Fashion Show' in the typ­ic­al 'Massive Ego' style. It's a great cov­er, but I think it's a pity that they keep it so close to the ori­gin­al. An Electrozombies hint: A much bet­ter cov­er ver­sion is avail­able from my friends of 'Fatal Aim'.

'Is The Universe Trying To Tell Me Something' is anoth­er great piece of music­al work. A catchy Synthpop song out of the text­book with a touch of spir­itu­al and SciFi themed lyr­ics. Maybe I'm already son­ic­ally too much influ­enced, but I might hear ref­er­ences to some old 'Pet Shop Boys' songs again like 'Heart' in the melody synth sounds. The reas­on could be that it's almost mid­night and I'm really tired. What influ­ences do you hear out of the song? Write it down in the com­ments below.

The revelation

Of course, the album has some weak­nesses and is not 100% soph­ist­ic­ated. But for an album of such qual­ity and scope after only two years since the last album 'Beautiful Suicide', I respect­fully bow to 'Massive Ego'. One last point of cri­ti­cism: The cov­er art­work is a bit too clichéd for me and far away from con­tem­por­ary cov­er art­works. But that should not stop you from buy­ing. So, up, up and buy this music­al gem.

By the way, this album also made it into our art­icle ‘The best Synth Pop and genre-related albums 2019‘. Read now.

Track By Track Rating

Massive Ego - Church For The Malfunctioned
Massive Ego – Church For The Malfunctioned
The Last Sunrays In June
Digital Heroin
Malfunctioning Me
My Religion Is Dark
Fallen From Grace
The Wolf
Point Of No Return
Super Selfie Superstar
Killing For Gods
World In The Gutter
Kill The Conspiracy
Military Fashion Show (And One Cover)
Is The Universe Trying To Tell Me Something
Mother Requiem
Recommend
My Religion Is Dark
Digital Heroin
Killing For Gods
Is The Universe Trying To Tell Me Something
Weak
Mother Requiem
3.8
Venerable

A mini documentary – Making of 'Church For The Malfunctioned'

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The Last Sunrays In June
Digital Heroin
Malfunctioning Me
My Religion Is Dark
Fallen From Grace
The Wolf
Point Of No Return
Super Selfie Superstar
Killing For Gods
World In The Gutter
Kill The Conspiracy
Military Fashion Show (And One Cover)
Is The Universe Trying To Tell Me Something
Mother Requiem
Final Score