Music Reviews



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Artist: SPIRACLE
Title: Iris
Format: MCD (Mini CD)
Label: Cloudmirror
Rated: *****
I don't know much about this Switzerland-based project, except that he's involved in Cloudmirror and is going to release a cdr on Mystery Sea anytime soon - but this mcd is surely enough to make me drool for more! Apparently inspired by an Eastern legend, this quite lengthy single track is a hypnotic power drone probably originated by manipulated string bowing. The repetitive playing tecnique is nerve-breaking but also exhilarating, creating a fine example of hardcore minimalism lying somewhere between La Monte Young and a less electronic Colin Potter.
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Artist: DES ESSEINTES
Title: Les Diaboliques
Format: CD
Label: Malignant
Rated: *****
After the recent appetizer remix-ep with Darrin Verhagen/E.P.A., here's the new anticipated album by Magnus Sunström's side project, while a new release by The Protagonist is in the works. Not that the kind of industrial music of the two names is that different: "Les Diaboliques" shares a similar heavily percussive style, which would be a perfect soundtrack for a suicide mission. The Ant-Zen/Hands-styled beat-oriented tracks are here limited to "Due", while the rest of the album maintains the same doom-filled mid-tempo, not far in its atmosphere from the structured industrial of Negru Voda's "Dobruja Region", which Sunström himself released a while ago. A disciplined, harsh but not overtly noisy record, though certainly not as sexy as the stripping lasses on the cover could suggest.
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Artist: DavidR-XV (@)
Title: Le Funeral Lounge
Format: CD
Distributor: CD Baby
Rated: *****
DavidR-XV seemingly comes from nowhere with the album Le Funeral Lounge, the second release by the obscure prodigy known only as DavidR; recording, mixing, and mastering this wonderful work of technoid IDM and meeting standards well beyond what I’d expect from a self-released artist. From the very beginning there is an uncanny sense of familiarity and comfort. Drifting ambient textures, grooving beats and an overall grasp of what makes a song enjoyableLe Funeral Lounge sounds and feels like a long lost album that I’ve always loved but never heard.

DavidR’s sound is very close to, and I’d venture to say heavily inspired by, early 90’s IDM. Le Funeral Lounge reminds me of Warp/Wax Trax’s Artificial Intelligence series, mixing the jazzed grooves of B-12 with the complexity of early Autechre, atmospheres of Polygon Window, and the perpetuating beats of Black Dog Productions. Le Funeral Lounge is the perfect compliment to this series, and a welcome return to more listener-friendly IDM. In Le Funeral Lounge DavidR manages to pay tribute to the strongest era of IDM while keeping his sound fresh and interesting.

DavidR-VX’s Le Funeral Lounge is the perfect IDM sound for anyone. Intricate and layered enough for the smart listener while retaining enough structure for the average ear. Le Funeral Lounge is an excellent album that, unlike many IDM releases I own, plays from start to finish every time I listen to it. If you have the means I strongly suggest adding this to your collection today.
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Artist: MOON FAR AWAY (@)
Title: Belovodie
Format: CD
Label: Prikosnovenie (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Forming ten years ago in Russia, Moon Far Away released their first album "Lado World" in 1997 and it has been recognized as the first gothic Russian release. "Belovodie" is their first album since the "Sator" album, released back in 2000. Their music is deeply influenced by the classic Russian folk music (the band also use some traditional instruments) but the band decided to blend the traditional sounds with electronic moments and with a darker atmosphere. In this way tracks like the opening "Na zore", "Zhito zhala" or "Volna shumit" are more influenced by new wave and gothic music while "Sobiraetse liubeznoy", "Iz-za gor", "Ekoy vania" or the following "Zvetiki" sound more folk and traditional. The effect created by this alternance of modern and traditional melodies is interesting and evidence that mixing different ideas is always a good thing. The forty six minutes of the album create a sort of ritualistic atmosphere that blend tension and calmness at the same time. The album has been released also by Shadowplay for the Soviet countries and it contains an extra track.
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Artist: NON TOXIQUE LOST (@)
Title: Siga Siga
Format: CD
Label: Dossier (@)
Rated: *****
On the digipack of this release you'll get just the basic infos like, name of the band, title of the records and the tracklist on the back, if communication means something this decision says it all. I'm almost sure I've recognized the voice of Sea Warton and the sound it's almost the same but there's something different in this release. I dunno if the band has suffered any line up changes but the songs are more skeletal, everything on this record goes straight to bone, the music gets even more visceral, the most o the songs lyrics are in german language. The vocals are more controlled or I'd better say that everything on this record is more in control, more tempered. "Siga siga" is less heterogeneous than "/bin/med/usa" but in a positive way, since for the whole length of the cd it will be like being thrown into the band's dimension. If the previous release was obsessive, "Siga Siga" is confidentially/visceral obsessive, these berliners are working on your skull with a screwdriver it clear from the beginning (Kein stern). If I were psychoanalist I'd say these people have finally arrived to meet their own "self" or well, maybe it all is nothing but a trip that has gone bad. If you're not confidential with the band my suggestion is to start from "Siga Siga", nothing could be Worse/better.
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