KMFDM - Retro ©1998 Wax Trax!
1. Power
2. Juke-Joint Jezebel
3. Brute
4. A Drug Against War
5. Light
6. Money
7. Vogue
8. Godlike-Doglike
9. Virus-Pestilence
10. Liebeslied-Leibesleid
11. More And Faster
12. Rip The System!
13. What Do You Know, Deutschland?
14. Don't Blow Your Top

Having disbanded in January '99, after 14 years, KMFDM was actually an important part of the industrial scene of the 80s and 90s. Retro actually began as a project by their record label in 1996, designed as a promotional tidbit for radio stations/journalists to induce coverage of their then-unreleased album Xtort. Word got out that there was a "greatest hits" album available, and the copies were snatched up like hotcakes by the music media types. Two years later, someone decided that it would be a good idea to release Retro to the general public, and so mote it be.

The songs from each album are bunched together, allowing for a little continuity, but they're not in chronological order by release date. Neither end of their career is well-represented, with the band choosing to focus mainly on their peak years of 1992-1995 (which makes sense, since it was originally a promo item for a '96 release). Unlike its predecessor, Agogo, Retro does not include any rarities or unreleased tracks, making it redundant for hardcore fans. For someone new to KMFDM, however, it's a good place to start because it weeds out a lot of the filler that characterized the band's output. As an overview of a prolific group's entire lifespan, Retro does its job fairly well. Even as a regular album, it's better than most of KMFDM's offerings: it is concise and there are variations from track to track. Admittedly, this isn't something I'll listen to every day, but it's a good cheap way to introduce yourself to a long-lived industrial band without having to sit through hours of their worst tendencies to meander through pointlessness.

Review by C. LeRoux

Review date: 07/2000

Back to top