EC80R with SHALLOW, N.D. and DJ JIMI LA MORT at the El Mocambo (464 Spadina), Monday (May 14). $8. 416-968-2001.
Once the pride of Alec Empire's Digital Hardcore Recordings operation, Berlin's EC8OR were just as surprised as anyone else to find out they'd been canned.
Judging by the buzzing bursts of mid-range noise that come disguised as club jams on their latest and final album for the label, The One And Only High And Low (DHR), EC8OR couldn't have been dropped for going soft.
However, the open display of humour in Patric Catani's ode to life on the road, Gimme NyQuil All Night Long, and Gina D'Orio's use of non-DHR-issue cheerleader costumes as stagewear could have been contributing factors in their abrupt termination. Maybe not.
"Since I knew Alec long before the whole DHR thing began," says D'Orio over the phone from Berlin, "it was quite weird to be dismissed from the the label with a four-sentence e-mail message.
"But the exact reason why it happened I don't know. It could be that Patric and I didn't fit in with DHR's plans because we're not so dogmatic. We don't have a political agenda and we're not teachers. We don't want to tell anyone how to do anything. How could we? We don't like to follow rules ourselves."
According to D'Orio, EC8OR wasn't the only group to part ways with DHR. "I don't know if there are any bands left on the label," she muses.
And where is Alec Empire? He supposedly has a factory loft in Berlin not far from D'Orio's place, although she hasn't seen or heard from him in months.
"I'm not the sort of person who likes talking about such matters. What's the phrase: I don't want to wash my dirty clothes in public? I'd much rather speak to him directly. It's just that this whole situation is very weird. Maybe DHR likes the mystery."