The 1990s was a very interesting time for Electronic Music. After the post-Acid House scene of the late 1980s morphed into the UK Hardcore scene of the early 1990s, EDM got a lot more recognition than it ever did in the 1980s. There were various trends that lifted off from the early 1990s that eventually led to EDM being a very mainstream thing, with crossover groups such as The Prodigy being almost as big as guitar-led groups such as Oasis. That says a lot about the popularity and artistic nature of EDM, even back then in the 1990s. Atari Teenage Riot are based in Germany, where it was commonplace by 1995 for huge Rave festivals to be held. Despite that in the UK, John Major’s Conservative government introduced specific legislation to limit such underground festivals, EDM based Electronic music was very popular in Europe by this time. It was time to start a riot, or more specifically, an Atari Teenage Riot. Let’s take a listen to this debut album from the group and hear how it sounds.

Start The Riot! begins with a sampled phrase: “I would die for peanut butter” and quickly launches into an Amen Break sample, along with some other strange melodic noises, before a scream enters and guitars and drums follow. This is clearly music for those who like hard drugs, and it sounds insane. Many profanities and other sonic assault sound effects are present here, and this sounds insanely good but weird. Towards the middle of the song are some interesting and full-on Roland TR-808 styled sounds, which sound very good. An intense and interesting tune and something that is a bit of an acquired taste, but humourous and intense simultaneously. Great to hear, even if it is very niche-styled music. It is definitely varied and interesting, with horror movie samples and the like, before Rob Zombie launched his solo career. It ends with loose samples of movies, really random but good fun to listen to.

Into The Death begins with some crusty sounding guitar riffs that are awesome, before “BANG YOUR HEAD!” is screamed and some awesome EDM sounds and beats enter to match the guitars. This is hilariously awesome, and although it is a very niche style of music, this is truly awesome for what it is. It sounds really impressive and amazing, a lot like the Dead Kennedys in many ways. If you ever need a good start to the day musically, this is it. Many excellent sounds and samples persist throughout and this will give mainstream music fans a headache. There are a huge variety of interesting and different sounds which mix Hardcore Punk, Metal, and UK Hardcore Rave music together into a great mixture of music. This is exactly what you need to annoy your parents if you are between the ages of 12 and 18. Hence the name, Atari Teenage Riot. Excellent tune for what it is, and nicely structured. Excellent work. It ends with some high-end frequencies to hurt your ears.

Raverbashing begins with distorted riffs and real drums, launching into a sample of warning about not being played on the radio, before going straight into another Amen breakbeat and a seriously funny and hilarious style of music. Again, this is absolutely brilliant music, provided that you don’t take it at all seriously. “Go!” is repeatedly shouted before an EDM styled breakdown, as this manic mania continues. It’s a parody of the UK Hardcore scene, hence the name of this tune. Still, intellectually, this is very decent and enjoyable listening. The musical equivalent of World War III, complete with sounds to fight the enemy with, there are intelligent samples and sounds galore. A full-on and fun listen, especially for those who need lines on the mirror each day to survive. A brilliant piece of music, it ends with some digitally altered Amen breaks and a scream, before a burp is heard. Silly.

Speed illustrates the point further. It has more Punk/Metal riffs and launches into a song with actual shouted lyrics. This is way better than Black Flag though and again is very difficult to be taken seriously. This tune is awesome and shows plainly the drugs that these guys were using during the making of the album. This one has some 8 Bit styled sounds and melodies and sounds fantastic, provided you get it musically. An awesome listening experience, especially for those who want Hardcore Punk made in an EDM format. Excellent work, this one is a little more serious, but fantastic all the same. It ends with crunchy guitar riffs and Roland TR-808 hits. Great.

Sex begins with some faded-in guitars, glistening sounds, and a freaky set of overtones. This is a slower piece, showing that these guys had an actual process about what they were doing. Nonetheless, this short tune is interesting. It has some whispered lyrics in a sensual, sexual way and this launches into a musical equivalent of a ballad…for these guys anyway. The lyrical samples here discuss sensual sexual desire, and it sounds really cool and amazing. Not to be taken too seriously, Atari Teenage Riot lives up to its name musically. A brilliant listening experience, with some interesting and sensual sounds, this is what musical lust should sound like. A really good listen, again, this does sound wonders musically. It eventually ends with the glistening sounds to conclude, nice work.

Midi Junkies begins with some distorted and digitized slowed-down vocals. Soon enough, some digital Atari-Esque sounds enter, followed by a fantastic digital riff. This quickly goes straight into a dynamic and excellent tune showcasing a more serious and interesting side to the group, but still retaining the brilliance and excellence of this piece. A really cool and excellent tune, this breaks down into a quirky section with vocal samples, breakbeats galore, and excellently positioned vocals. These guys were on a mission to eliminate everyone else in the music scene, whether others understood it or not. This five-minute-long tune again is excellent listening and very humourous music. Sure, it’s a different sort of humour from what Kid Rock displays in his music, but this is more silly than serious. There is another breakdown in the second half, before full on percussive based sounds enter. In all honesty, this is very intellectual music and brilliant, too. A really decent listen, this is weird. It has a strange digital melody towards the end that is reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix’s music that drifts in and out of audibility. It comes back right at the end to surprise you before this track concludes. Cool.

Delete Yourself begins with a partial re-hash of the digital melody from the previous track, followed by some audience applause. This is a strange tune and has some Nine Inch Nails style spoken lyrics, before launching into an absolutely brilliant piece of Hardcore musical mayhem. If there were any name to describe this style of music, it would be Hardcore, both analog and digital. This is a fantastic blistering assault that makes perfect sense to those who enjoy the gonzo humour of the Dead Kennedys, the rave-based UK Hardcore scene, and early Metallica. It also samples the guitar riff from The Sex Pistols God Save The Queen. Obviously, these guys had a good musical brain at hand. This is a punch in the face musically, and it is ferociousness and fury, 1995 style. A really interesting and great listen, there is chanting throughout that is awesome, along with brilliant shouty/screaming vocals. This tune, again is amazing, provided you can stomach this sort of thing. It launches into some excellent musical choruses with earlier mentioned sampled riffs. A great anthem for those who are young and furious. Mindblowing tune.

Hetzjagd Auf Nazis is an unusual name for a tune, but seemingly appropriate given that these guys were German. If these guys were Neo-Nazis, no surprises at all here. It continues with the crowd cheering, followed by some loose electronic sounds and some talk at a gig in German introducing the tune. Eventually, this rather lengthy intro concludes with the tune beginning, which sounds really dark, satanic, and aggressive. Again, there is no way that this music can be taken seriously at all. A headbanging and pounding piece to hear, this is more minimal than what came before but is still retaining the excellence and quality of the earlier tunes on this record. A bombastic, exciting, and punchy tune, complete with machine gun sounds, this is direct. Nonetheless, this works very well if you are a fan of moshing in the pit. A really excellent listen, despite there being obvious references to the German Nazis (Adolf Hitler’s mob) and designed to be a sonic assault. Brilliant musicality is here, and the whole thing sounds like The Chemical Brothers on meth at a Klu Klux Klan rally. Still, it is interesting music and musicality. If the Atari Teenage Riot wanted to shock anyone, they have done so here. Brilliant. It ends with Acid House style washes, cool. It segues into the next song.

Cyberpunks Are Dead begins with some clever breakbeats and cut-up sounds, followed by a strange and sustained guitar sound that is very much like Industrial Music, before launching into a beat heavy and interesting tune, once again. This is another interesting effort that owes more to EDM than Rock music of any sort, and it is a great musical assault on the senses. This short three minute long piece does extremely well to annoy anyone who ever loved The Beatles or ABBA. In the middle is a stop/start breakdown, before musical elements and guitars build up to surprise you. A Ministry style guitar sample is present here, just as the tune continues. This is awesome. It leads into some unorthodox EDM beats and breaks over the drum loop. A wicked listen, and 100% worth your time, if you dare. Great music. It ends with some loose guitars. Great job.

Kids Are United begins with a take on of The Clash, before launching into a good mesh of Punk guitars and breakbeats. This brutal Rap styled tune then gets going, and it retains the passion and energy of Atari Teenage Riot. Again, this is a very acquired taste of music, but if you understand it, it is awesome to hear. Some talk and sing shouting for those who likely are the audience of this group are present. There is a meltdown into an electronic riff, followed by the second half of the song. This is a good devotional piece for the people who follow Atari Teenage Riot. This seems a little weaker than the earlier songs, but this is still a consistent tune nonetheless. Interesting music nonetheless, and it works. It ends with chanting and clapping, which is weird.

Atari Teenage Riot is the mission statement of the group. It begins with weird electronic science fiction sounds, a sample of Martin Luther King Jr. before launching into a truly awesome mixture of guitars and the Amen Break, once again. This sounds ridiculously good, and for a mission statement, this is sonically awesome and it works nicely, too. Sirens and other different sounds are present in this tune, and it is full of catchy guitars and brilliant sounds throughout. Youthful angst is the main game here, and the group does a fantastic job here. It sounds quirky and demonic, likely because it is supposed to. Nonetheless, this is really fantastic and amazing to hear. The mixture of electronic sounds, guitars, and breakbeats make this an amazing tune to hear. Fine work. It ends with some strange and disturbing sounding melodies. Great work.

Riot 1995 is the last tune here, and it begins with sonically impressive guitar loops and a punchy tune at hand. Again, this continues the fluidity and amazingly shocking listen that Atari Teenage Riot has made on this album. This is a bit of filler styled music, but still, it works exceptionally well. An impressive listen with a multitude of digital sounds, guitars, and sonic elements to take you by surprise. Towards the midsection is a nicely mixed job of the repeated song section. Okay, this is filler, clearly, but Atari Teenage Riot really care, not. These guys were the 1990s answer to The Sex Pistols, and they fit this slogan perfectly. This tune is rather tripped out, and it ends an unexpectantly amazing album. It finishes with some Atari Pac-Man sounds. Cool.

This is one of the most politically incorrect albums out there that is memorable, interesting, and above all, humourous. As mentioned, this is not easy listening music but it is so good that it works, even as a niche record. A great album to have tucked away when you need to freak out your parents, friends, or neighbours. It is underrated and simply impressive. Nice work.

Brutally funny.

9/10