Primitive Race - Soul Pretender album review

Chuck Mosley’s unique and gritty sonic legacy

Cover art for Primitive Race - Soul Pretender album

You can trust Louder Our experienced team has worked for some of the biggest brands in music. From testing headphones to reviewing albums, our experts aim to create reviews you can trust. Find out more about how we review.

Primitive Race began as an industrial supergroup, created by producer/bassist Chris Kniker and featuring a rotating cast of musicians who’ve been involved with the likes of Gary Numan, Skinny Puppy, Combichrist and The Mission.

While their 2015 self-titled debut was heavy on the electronic and industrial, second album Soul Pretender saw them adding new members – ex-Faith No More vocalist Chuck Mosley and Melvins drummer Dale Crover – and making a sonic U-turn to produce a gritty mash-up of alt.rock, grunge and punk that’s boisterously unique yet undeniably 90s.

Sadly, Mosley passed away unexpectedly a mere week after the album’s release. His gruff gravelled vocals are centre stage, from the ragged chants of Row House to the punk grooves of Cranial Matter, and the best way to approach Soul Pretender in light of this tragic news is to hear it as a diverse piece of work that honours his memory.

Hannah May Kilroy

Hannah May Kilroy has been writing about music professionally for over a decade, covering everything from extreme metal to country. She was deputy editor at Prog magazine for over five years, and previously worked on the editorial teams at Terrorizer and Kerrang!. She currently works as the production editor for The Art Newspaper, and also writes for the Guardian, Classic Rock and Metal Hammer.