Matt Hart comes from London, England, where he cut his teeth as the live guitarist and bassist for Concrete Lung. In 2013, Hart first began DJing, and eventually became a regular act at Slimelight in his native London. Starting in 2017, he started releasing music as a solo artist, beginning with Anthology of Corrosion, and most recently Terra 3808, which he describes as “part sci-fi/post-apocalyptic concept album, part commentary on the current state of the world.”
Sonically speaking, Terra 3808 is a dream for industrial metal fans. Low-tuned guitars, especially what sound like eight-strings in tracks such as “Outlaws” and “Edge of Life,” double-kick patterns that batter the eardrum in the best way, and some old-school electro-industrial sounds for good measure. It is unafraid to be heavy, and vocally, Hart is unafraid of making some interesting choices, with black metal howls in “Superficial” and its Ruinizer remix, the latter of which somehow sounds even harsher than the former.
As someone who grew up on metal, and thought they were the coolest, baddest high schooler on the planet for doing so, I cannot praise the double-kick work enough on this record. It’s not something that straight-up industrial is going to necessarily highlight, but here, Hart uses the techniques to great effect. Look no further than tracks like “Deep Mind Formulates” and “Infinite March” for proof of some fancy footwork.
“Gone to Shit” is a highlight from this album, for its talk-sung vocals and quintessential electro-industrial sound. It has an infectious, four-square groove to it that gets stuck in your head all too easily. For the metal-oriented of us, there are tracks like the crushing “Outlaws” and “We Burned the Sky,” though Matt Hart proves that guitars aren’t a requisite to make a great industrial record.
Even though dystopia is not breaking new ground anymore, especially given today’s political climate, the art that it generates can be a sign of the times, as well as transcend the time period in which it is crafted. Such is the case with Terra 3808, a well-rounded offering from the London industrialist Matt Hart. Something tells me that Mr. Hart will be one to watch for 2020 and beyond.