SPLENDID MAGAZINE, (July 21, 2003):
TURN PALE - 'Kill the Lights' CD
As much as I shouldn't resort to cheap shots or bad puns, I can't resist branding "Kill The Lights" as a pretty pale, stomach-turning imitation of early '80s post-punk industrial disco. The most obvious influences here are Gang of Four and Public Image Ltd., and while it's not necessarily a bad idea to ape those bands, the results utterly pale in comparison (okay, I'll stop) and seem toothless and tame following the likes of Trent Reznor (see the NIN homage "Light Melts Away") and Marilyn Manson. It doesn't help that Michael Anderson's excruciating caterwaul is more Emo Phillips (through a southern Indiana filter, no less) than John Lydon. I'll take the up-tempo, genuinely danceable, riff-heavy numbers like "The Very Center of It All" and "Beneath The Wheel" over the ponderous, grinding, endless ones (the eight-minute opener, "Submit to Me"), but not by much. However, I'll bet even Lydon would get a kick out of a lyric (from "End of Words") that goes, "It's all talk, talk, talk, / yak, yak, yak, / blah, blaaahh, blaaaahhh."
- Chris Kriofske