This is a quite silly science-fiction concept album I wrote mainly as a present for a friend of mine. We both have a great love for concept albums, such as Genesis' "The Lamb," Gary Numan's "Replicas" and Pink Floyd's "The Wall," so I thought it appropriate to do an all-out 70's style concept album, complete with radio-theater-esque dialog-bits in between the actual songs.
It's a science-fiction story set in the future, where religious fundamentalist groups are opposing the government's plans to electronically tag every citizen in the world through what they call the Global Digitalization Initiative. So, in essense, we have two reprehensible antagonists at war with each other, and us, the citizens, caught in the middle - unable to choose sides, because both are equally defeating.
The Global Digitalization Initiative is being spearheaded by a small group of programmers, working over the distances of the internet (which, in the future, is accessed through terminals called Access Points, or just "The Access"). Three of them are already dead as we open the story, despite being under heavy guard, and the police are still at square one.
It is, of course, obviously the religious fundamentalist group, who call themselves the Human Preservation Society, who are responsible for the deaths of the Initiative programmers. And they make this perfectly clear to the authorities - but continue to elude them, by using our society's advanced technology against it.
The story opens at 5.15 am in the morning, when rogue programmer, Carl McIntyre, phones the police with a tip about having potentially seen one of the assassins, hacking into a public Access Point behind a seedy dive called the Server Café (yes, I know, very cheesy). Just as he is about to give a description of the assassin, an unknown force pins him to his seat. Unable to move, a disembodied voice admonishes him - and then, Carl's head spontaneously explodes.
And so begins our silly little tale. Later, we'll meet Detective Clements, who is the lead investigator of Carl's murder, and the last surviving programmer of the Initiative, Carla Regina Arigold, who is put into protective custody. (Of course, Carla doesn't actually SPEAK, since I can't impersonate a female voice at all convincingly.)
The ending is intentionally ambiguous: the final track of the album presents you with two different endings. In one, the Global Digitalization Initiative is completed, and every man, woman and child on the face of the Earth is digitally tagged and under constant surveillance by the government. In the other, the Human Preservation Society succeeds in stopping the Initiative, then goes into politics and tries to overthrow the world's government on a platform of rejecting all technological advancements; basically sending everyone back to the stone age. Both horrible outcomes; no happy endings; just the way we like it.
Again, don't take the whole thing too seriously. It was recorded in about a week, only a month after Complacency Kills. Despite having 11 tracks, the album is quite short, since most of the tracks are brief dialogue scenes.
This version of the album features a freshly remixed version of the final track, "Dealt an Unwinnable Hand."
released July 1, 2007
Music, lyrics, script, production, engineering, mixing and mastering by Troels Pleimert (whew).
All voices, guitars, keyboards, sound effects and drum programming by Troels Pleimert, except: lead vocals on "Dealt an Unwinnable Hand" by David Warmind.
Cover artwork and photography by Troels Pleimert.
Dedicated to Thomas Arnt Jensen.