Cassandra Complex

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Finland by Cassandra Complex

Waxtrax Records, 1990

Tracklist/ faves
(side one)
A. I Believe in Free Everything (Charlie Victor)
AA. Let’s Go to Europe
(side two)
AAA. What Turns You On? (Plastic Mix)
B. Fire and Forget
C. Forests

The Cassandra complex is a psychological phenomenon in which an individual’s accurate prediction of a crisis is ignored or dismissed. (x)

Cassandra Complex is a band with quite a history. For once, this is not a little-known and completely forgotten record that I’ve dug out of Amoeba’s dollar bin; CC actually released seven studio albums and many other EPs and 12″. They are listed as a gothic post-punk band on Wikipedia but, honestly, I can’t take any of it seriously. 

I have three words for this album art: Pontius Pilate’s Galaga. The colors are bold and the image of Christ from his Passion adds a certain humor to it, assuming you find this funny. I certainly do. However the music is not cohesive at all. Some tracks are simply not enjoyable (let’s not go to Europe) but I was thrown by the lyrics of others. “What Turns You On?” is a story of an offensive criminal who murders women and apparently loves Jesus. I can appreciate the satire, but the song is just not good. (”What Turns You On?” as well as “I Believe in Free Everything” also appear on Cyberpunx, the next album the band released after Finland.)

Cassandra Complex do have some high points though, namely the final track, “Forests.” As the C-side, this track has depth, compelling melodies, and the least annoying structure, as most of the others were just experimental messes. What I hear in “Forests” is what I would have expected for the entirety of this dark industrial release, but maybe their studio records are less of a hodge podge than their EPs. We can only hope. 

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