active cell

"K-Nitrate comes back to live after nearly 11 years of silence! This British project set up by Graham Rayner made a very successful debut in 1993 with the "Xenophobia"-cd, followed by the "Hyperphobia"-ep in 1996. For "Active cell" Christian Weber joined in. Both artists are already active in Audio War and Audacity.

They now seem to have surpassed themselves releasing an outstanding album! K-Nitrate remains hard and powerful, but seriously evolved in style. "Active cell" sounds like a mix of psy-trance, hard-techno and distant elements reminding to arrangements of The Prodigy. The album remains instrumental and it's a pity they didn't use a bit more spoken samplings, but the result is simply wonderful. This is music for the dancefloors of the best underground hard-techno clubs.

Be sure K-Nitrate will simply blow you away with cuts like "Mental poison", "Atomic", "Transmit", "The ascension" or yet "Laser guided". This last cut starts with a spoken sampling reminding me to the very early years of The Klinik. It next evolves into an overwhelming hard dance assault of techno ingredients and psychedelic vibes. I've been deeply impressed by the arrangements and manipulations running through the songs. The effects and filtered tones are simply hallucinating.

K-Nitrate comes back as a different project, which has reinvented their own sound! 10 songs to discover without hesitation!

This is brilliant!"

9/10 - DP (Side Line)


"Active Cell is the new album from the UK band K-Nitrate, which aurally assaults you with energy in its truest techno-musical form.

This album is designed to get you moving, pure and simple. Think 90's old-school techno in the vein of bands like Orbital and older 808 State and you've got the idea. I suppose this shouldn't be surprising since the band formed in the early 90's. Songs like "Metal Poison", "Transmit", which strongly reminds me of Orbital, and "Fat America" absolutely demand movement of the listener. You won't find any singing on this album, but the occasional sample here and there. That's ok though, more space for you to appreciate the undulating rhythms flying past your head at full speed.

Active Cell is recommended only for those who remember and enjoyed the older techno style - a small treat in a world of sedentary complacency."

8/10 - Legion (This Is Corrosion)


"Call it hard house, call it techno, call it industrial, we'll even concede that you might call it electronica if you're of an American persuasion, but if you're into thudding, acid fried music which makes you dance like a monkey on a hotplate then you're gonna love the latest from K-Nitrate.

Fashionability be damned, genres be damned (in fact it was the idiotic genre-fication of dance music which helped sink it), if, like us, you miss the days when performers worked on dark stages with torches strapped to their bonces and you flung yourself around euphorically for hours on end then this is just the legal flashback you're looking for."

(Total Music Magazine)


"Back after 13 years from their full length debut, K-nitrate (now formed by Graham Rayner and Christian Weber) present a new album titled ACTIVE CELL.

The ten new tracks see the duo using real synthesizers only (as stated inside the CD booklet) to create their mixture of acid techno electronic music. With a different kind of sounds we could call it danceable industrial music but, in this case, I can hear echoes of 90’s acid music (don’t ask me names, because acid music isn’t my cup of tea) that mixed with distorted lead synth lines form a new kind of explosive mixture.

If you want me to compare the sound to something I know, try to imagine The Prodigy of tracks like 'Hyperspeed (G-Force part 2)' but add an aggressive tone and raise the techno influence. The choice the band did of making instrumental tracks increase the effect of a dancehall in distortion.

With vocal lines they could smash the charts just like The Prodigy did."

4/5 - Maurizio Pustianaz (Chain DLK)


"K-Nitrate’s second full-length release, "Active Cell", is an adrenaline infused blast of old school techno that is pure dance floor bliss.

“Active Cell” is the first K-Nitrate release since 1997’s "Hyperphobia" EP and their first full-length since "Xenophobia", which was released in 1994.

It’s not that Graham Rayner and Christian Weber have been quiet all this time, they’ve just been busy with other projects, most recently and notably with Audio War, but have also contributed plenty of remixes throughout the years as K-Nitrate and appear on the MoMT Records 2007 Chemlab tribute CD.

The K-Nitrate and Audio War projects have one thing in common: a penchant for creating electronic dance music that moves at a blistering pace.

Whereas the Audio War project relies more on heavy bass grooves and guitar samples, K-Nitrate is strictly sweet synth manna, light on the samples, and uses no vocals. Recalling the glory days of bands like Juno Reactor and other similar acts of that era when techno began to take itself seriously, "Active Cell" was mastered by John Sellekaers (Xingu Hill).

In my opinion this CD is Rayner’s and Weber‘s best work in terms of energy and sound quality. There is also a remixed version of this CD entitled "Mutagen", which I’m sure MoMT will be sending me to review, right MoMT."

9/10 - Michael Casano (Virus Magazine)


"Like taking a trip back in time to the '90s techno and EBM scene, yet staying in tune with the current electro crop, K-Nitrate's first album in a decade is full of pulse-pounding beats and searing synth leads that will have you oscillating wildly on the dance floor.K-Nitrate has returned after a decade of hibernation from the electro/industrial scene, releasing 10 tracks of full-throttle pulse-pounding EBM, techno, and hard danceable electro. Active Cell is like taking a trip back in time to the genre's infancy before the advent of software synthesis and laptop DJs took over the culture. The album sleeve proudly declares that no soft synths were used in the making of this product, and it certainly shows as every sound, from the scorching leads to the distorted bass lines, pumps through your speakers with a fervor only hardware synthesizers can achieve without extensive tweakery and overproduction.

The duo of Graham Rayner and Christian Weber may have kept busy over the years with Audio War and Audacity, but K-Nitrate captures the simplicity of the '90s EBM sound when groups like Cyber-Tec, Psykosonik, and Cubanate were the kings of the scene. From the onset of "Fusion," listeners are immediately sent hurdling through a maelstrom of pounding percussion and urgent synths that will surely send you running to the dance floor, leading into the breakneck assault of speedy techno that is "Mental Poison." The album doesn't let up for a second, as tracks like "Reactor" and "Laser Guided" shoot forth a frantic array of beats that will get your heart pumping and searing leads that will have you dancing like a ninja on amphetamines, while the rave styling of "Cyanide" will have your body oscillating wildly. The title track offers the only interlude of sonic solace, yet still attacking the listener with layers of scathing atmospheres and echoing beats.

It's rare to hear an album so in tune with the modern era, yet possessing an element of nostalgic bliss. There's something inherently anachronistic about the construction and concept of Active Cell, yet K-Nitrate manage to produce enough interest and bite in their brand of hard techno that it could stand up to the current wave of zombified terror EBM and power noise expulsions. With Active Cell, K-Nitrate proves that they can still dish out a hard-hitting set of bombastic electronic fire; it's as if they never left."

3.5/5 - Ilker Yücel (Regen Magazine)


"The previous cd from K-Nitrate was released in 1997. Now, ten years later they are back with a fully instrumental recording entitled Active Cell.

K-Nitrate is Christian Weber (also in Audiowar) and Graham Rayner (ex-Cubanate, also Audiowar). Their previous cd Hyperphobia was released by Synthetic Symphony and featured vocals. This time around on the new Active Cell abum these are gone, instead you’ll hear kick-ass industrial dance, in which psytrance, British rave and industrial EBM are merged.

This sounds really awesome.

‘Mental Poison’ is strongly influenced by British rave. ‘Cyanide’ is towards hardstyle dance, ‘Transmit’ and ‘Atomic’ are more towards techno and ‘Laser Guided’ is towards progressive trance.

The cd is mastered by the Belgian Canadian Canadees John Sellekaers (a.o. Xingu Hill, Dead Hollywood Stars, The Missing Ensemble) and his contribution appears to have been essential as the sound is powerful and spatial.

The material of Rayner and Weber with Audiowar is quite good, but what they deliver with K-Nitrate is a whole lot more powerful and focussed. Active Cell kicks ass! When you buy this album you will get a bonus with the remix album Mutagen."

8/10 - Teknoir (GothTronic)


"A new album from two veterans of British Industrial Techno-Trance, Graham Rayner and Christian Weber, who until recently have spent their energies on their side project 'Audio War'.

'Active Cell' contains vigorous, groovy, harsh real sounds and high quality electronic dance music for the masses of both alternative youth's and extreme adults. K-Nitrate was unexpectedly re-animated after 10 years of silence and what we've got with 'Active Cell' is bloody contagious and quite close to musical perfection. Fit for futuristic raves, soaked in human sweat, the sounds of euphoric choral screams violently fired by laser beams and strobe lights. It's a similar sound often heard in sci-fi movies, during night club scenes, inhabited by cyberpunks, electro freaks, fetishists and other undergound movements.

The length of the album allows the listener to enjoy 'Active Cell' in one sitting as background music at home without anything annoying sticking in one’s head and obscuring one’s mind. However, this CD is recommended for party dance floors. That is the place it will work perfectly, like a dancing engine forcing all clubbers to stay convulsing on the floor without rest. Floating in slow-motion effects, effecting minds and muscles, erasing the edge between reality and hallucinations, throwing the crowd under one insane, melodic rhythmic attack after another.

All of this lays beneath sharp instrumental K-Nitrate tracks, balanced between harsh and fashionable dance ('Cyanide'), hyperactive psychedelic hard-trance with a hint of guitars and space synthesisers ('Fat America','Reactor','Transmit'), rhythmic brutal techno ('Atomic') and reckless mutated EBM ('Mental Poison').

As an aside, I would like to point out that the British musicians used only real analogue synthesisers, not software, and John Sellekares (Metarc, Xingu Hill) did the final mastering. All of this alters the quality and characteristics of the album. It overflows with energy, threatening to quite literally overload and choke the adrenaline from the songs. However, the songs never go of the course set by the musicians with their fixed rhythmic beats.Nevertheless, the main strengths of this album are only truly revealed on the dance floor. So, the usage of this music isn't necessarily universal.

I recommend this record to all techno/trance/industrial DJ's (8 out of the 10 tracks are club tracks) and to lovers of Cubanate, Think About Mutation, Juno Reactor, Holeg & Spies, Biopsy, Syrian, Cydonia and other similar acts."

(Many thanks to Maria Vlazneva for the translation!)

8/10 (Machinist Music)


"Dance floors will easily ignite over this easily digestible tracks of complex arrangements and loaded loops. Detroit will be proud..."

J-Sin (Smother)