It’s weird how things turn out. After Chris Peterson left Front Line Assembly and concentrated on his own project Decree, you would perhaps expect him and Bill Leeb to never work together again. But lo and behold, this resurrection of Bill’s old project Noise Unit sees them making noise together once more. A bunch of friends are included as well, such as FLA collaborator Jason Filipchuk, and ex-FLA member Michael Balch. It even features the vocal talents of fans from the Mindphaser internet forum, where Chris asked for weird phone calls to use on the hidden bonus track. A very cool thing to do and it turned out great, even though the track in question is not one of my favourites on here, being a bit too unfocused and simple.
However, the album opener “Illicit Dreams” is a real treat. The obligatory long intro sets the scene with tremendous ambience and with fantastic, sweeping synth pads building up before the heavy beat sets in. Just about now, we’re in vocoder heaven, and although it’s impossible to hear what is sung, I really don’t care. The song is pretty monotonous, but it drives the point home with pneumatic precision.
After this fabulous opening, we’re treated to “Seclusion”, a more laidback track with fat strings and a killer lead synth melody chipping in after a while.
The absolute joy of the album though, is “Submerged”, a track first made under the FLA moniker for the “Epitaph” album as a hidden bonus track. This time it’s expanded in every way, creating an underwater tidal wave of bass, ambience and rhythm. I implore you to take a dive.
In short, "Voyeur" shows a more experimental side of Leeb and his friends than usual, and it’s nice to see they still want to try new things, after all these years. Not all tracks on “Voyeur” are equally great, but for some reason, even the lesser tracks are better than most stuff out there today.