Systems Overload was the name of the 1995 INTEGRITY album that got me hooked to these guys, ‘systems overload’ was also the term that might be fitting with the situation the band released this album in the nineties. A engineer named Bill Korecky oversaw the production and apparently the jagged vision of Dwid and Aaron’s mix didn’t compute with those of Bill. After numerous discussion and attempts to lay down the final mix Aaron Melnick gave in to Bill’s madness and called it quits. Systems Overload was released as such but to those who gave birth to this masterpiece it remained an unfinished symhony with much more potential.
|No hardcover but a space age material bag|
That’s when Organized Crime Records steps in with the aid of current and former Integrity masterminds Robert Orr and Aaron Melnick. Together they created this special edition release of Sytems Overload,
remixed from the original tapes by Orr and Melnick to release the original sin.
|Thick sturdy vinyl to overload your stereo systems|
All this madness came into the highly anticipated Halloween package that Organized Crime Records throws every year around Halloween, ever so mysterious many awaited their faith to grasp a glimpse at the diabolical schemes that would unravel from this godforsaken package. Inside this box of Pandora a bloodred vinyl record bearing the INTEGRITY skull greets us through some mylar packaging embossed with the title and year of this joyfull event. Halloween MMXII.
|No distinction between A or B side, except in the matrix etching|
Within the bag there is also a gigantic poster with distorted art by Dwid, a decal sticker of the INTEGRITY skull , a booklet regarding the how and why of this album by Robert Orr and Aaron Melnick and a download card for the digital hocus pocus files of this magnificent piece of wax. Next to that there is also a T shirt included in the package.
|OCR , Orr and A2 , the unholy trinity|
This special edition comes on thick as blood red wax and according to the numbers are out of /165.
It appears there will also be a black edition on /365 copies to appear on this earthly realm soon.
|History and Future of INTEGRITY team up|
So this round is another reissue of a classic INTEGRITY records, nothing new you would say since INTEGRITY seems to release all their records on a thousand different versions making it’s a collectors nightmare (or wet dream) to collect, but this time it’s not the artwork or vinylcolor that stands out but the fact that we get the whole mix redone by original bandmembers the way it was meant to be. Quite a unique release for a true INTEGRITY afficionado.
|Psalms of Sarin|
With this remixed version of Systems Overload we really get to hear the full exctent of how
this album was recorded. And since receiving this masterpiece in my mailbox i’ve given it quite some spins on the ‘ye olde turntable’ with the remastered version that Clint at OCR released last year to compare the differences. And indeed the remixed version offers a world of difference once heard side to side with the original mix.
Since i do not want to bore you all to death with a track by track comparison and also you should indulge in this experience yourself and try to get a hold of a copy of this remixed album.
A few of the things that grasped my ear when listening to this remixed version are as following :
– The overall sound of the recordings are much more separated and distinctive sounds can be noticed, the original mix tends to be noisy and crafted as a wall of sound to speak.
– The vocal parts are amazing on this one, you can hear the back of Dwid’s ferocious throat when listening, in the original mixing a lot of the roaring sound ,that Dwid as self proclaimed hellhound can produce, seem to be banished to the background into a blur.
– The bassline in No One plays a massive role when heard through the proper mixing, you can really hear those strings get plucked with the bassline that supports this whole track. Compared to the original mix where the bass gets lost in the over the top production.
– Incarnate 365 still starts with the epic Manson sample but it’s put more on the foreground and some additional samples get the upperhand during the track. A snippet of the Manson girls talking adds another layer to this already excellent track.
|MMXII shirt front|
And to finally close the chapter behind the overdue remix of Systems Overload the final words that we hear on the record are. That’s all Bill…
|MMXII shirt back|
As it is, so it be