The industrial techno-rock duo Cubanate have just issued a video for ‘Kolossus’, the title song from their
brand new EP. The spectacular, frenetic clip is directed by E Gabriel Edvy of Blackswitch Labs, who
previously made a video for a track from front man Marc Heal’s 2016 solo album ’The Hum’.
The EP marks Cubanate’s first new music in over two decades and contains five new songs plus
remixes of the title track by Rhys Fulber (Front Line Assembly, Delerium, Conjure One) and DROWND.
Released on 7th June, it was previewed at live shows in London (co-headlined with Pig) and Leipzig
(Wave-Gotik-Treffen festival) in early June.
The techno-rock crossover music made by Cubanate in the 1990’s was both controversial and influential.
They were one of the few ‘Industrial’ bands to cross over to mainstream audiences and were regular
fixtures in publications as diverse as Kerrang! and Melody Maker, as well as on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball.
They toured with acts such as Front 242, Gary Numan, The Sisters of Mercy and Front Line Assembly,
while their songs have appeared in film, TV and game soundtracks.
Formed in the summer of 1992 as a four piece centred around Marc Heal (vocals) and Phil Barry (guitar),
their early sound fused the rhythms of the then nascent techno scene with the lo-fi grunge rock sound
emanating from the US. Although the band later became adopted by Goth audiences, early Cubanate
was more influenced by Joey Beltram, Baby Ford and Nirvana.
Following a UK tour with electronic duo Sheep on Drugs, they signed to the Berlin based Dynamica
label and released their debut album, ‘Antimatter’ (1993), which included the single ‘Body Burn’ (heard
years later in the final series of ‘The Sopranos’). In 1994, they were paired with extreme metal outfit
Carcass for what turned out to be a notoriously violent UK tour. Heal’s antagonistic on-stage style resulted
in death threats and an on-air confrontation with Radio 1 Rock Show host Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden).
The second Cubanate album, ‘Cyberia’ (1995), featured the single ‘Oxyacetylene’, which also featured
on the 1996 compilation album ‘Mortal Kombat’ and was then used as the theme tune of the PlayStation
game ‘Gran Turismo’. It is regularly touted as one of the definitive Industrial songs of all time. The band’s
third album, ‘Barbarossa’ (1996) contained the single ‘Joy’ and was promoted with high profile live dates
supporting Gary Numan, Rammstein, The Sisters of Mercy and Front 242. Heal struck up a friendship at
this time with Jean-Luc De Meyer of Front 242 and the pair subsequently released two albums as C-Tec.
In 1997, seeking a change of label and direction, Cubanate signed to Wax Trax! for what was to be their
final album to date, ‘Interference’ (1998). Splitting in 2000 but reforming in September 2016 for a set at
the Cold Waves Festival in Chicago, they subsequently played several UK and North American dates in
2017 to promote a retrospective compilation entitled ‘Brutalism’.