Somewhere, an old T-shirt from Illusion Of Safety exists (the last we saw was affixed to Sigtryggur from Stillupsteypa some 10 years ago) with a deadpan/ironic catch-phrase "Illusion Of Safety gives you that soaring feeling" next to an image of a man tumbling headfirst out of a skyscraper window. Such a calculated juxtaposition of word and image was emblematic of the '80s art world (e.g. Barbara Kruger), often speaking to the underbelly of callousness, cruelty, violence and general amorality within consumerist society. Outside of this bold piece of iconography, Illusion Of Safety has operated within a more liminal state of mysteriousness through signifier and meaning. Even in their most placid albums of soft-focus ambience, the specter of some unknowable threat lurks in the background. More common in the Illusion Of Safety catalogue is an iron-fisted grasp of that sense of foreboding and dread through psychologically tense sound design. Over three decades in existence, this Chicago based project has been whittled down to its core member Dan Burke - with a few comrades-in-arms joining him occasionally - and is probably the longest running American industrial project, having produced a very impressive body of work. The 2014 album Surrender fits comfortably next to some of the masterpieces of the IOS back catalogue (e.g. Cancer, In Session, Historical, etc.) through the trademarked juxtaposition of noxious frequencies snaking in and out of harmonic phase patterns only to snap out of existence with a razor-cut edit into an electrical burst of tesla coil noise (for example). Disjointed rhythms, mediated collages, decontextualized field recordings, and psychoacoustic phrases map this album with incredible control and precision. Illusion Of Safety proves once again that they are one of the greats of industrial culture. Grab this album before it disappears, the pro-duplicated cd-r is limited to just 100 copies. Same for the cassette.
MPEG Stream: "East Of Easement"
MPEG Stream: "Popular Delusions"
MPEG Stream: "Roller Coaster"
Daniel Burke (Illusion of Safety) can be heard performing with Thomas Dimuzio on the radio in San Francisco today at two different stations:
3/4 KFJC and KPFA: DBTD radio performances
3-4PM Dan Burke & Thomas Dimuzio Live on KFJC
stream it here: http://www.kfjc.org/
11:59PM-1:30AM Dan Burke & Thomas Dimuzio Live on KPFA
No Other Radio network: hosted by Russ Kent (Mr. Hate:)
stream it here: http://www.kpfa.org/nootherradionetwork