Music Reviews



Psyche: Club Salvation

 Posted by Andrea Vercesi (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Jan 22 2008
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Artist: Psyche (@)
Title: Club Salvation
Format: CD
Label: Rivetting Promotions (@)
Rated: *****
Psyche formed in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in late 1982. Through the years they gained a cult status for the, here included, Q Lazarus cover of "Goodbye Horses" (that appears in the "Silence of the Lambs" OST) and released many albums with a distinct but ever-evolving style mixing ebm, minimal synth, synthpop and a softer blend of industrial. The first album was out on the legendary New Rose label, home of French coldwave bands Charles De Goal and Résistance and famous for having put out the first cd edition of Virgin Prunes. From the beginning the nucleus of the band consisted of Darrin Huss - with the help of many collaborators. This collection is meant both for fans that didn't follow Darrin's latest progressions and for people approaching Psyche for the first time because includes some classic stuff. There's also an update to their classic hit called "Unveiling the Secret 2.0" (which came out in 2006 both on cd and 12" with lots of interesting remixes). Judging from the many dates on Darrin's myspace (http://www.myspace.com/psyche), Psyche are alive and kicking in 2008.

COMANDO SUZIE: Probres Chavales

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Jan 21 2008
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Artist: COMANDO SUZIE
Title: Probres Chavales
Format: CD
Label: Punch Records (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Released as the previous split 7" by Punch Records, here's the first full length by Comando Suzie. Sung only in Spanish language, POBRES CHAVALES brings to the lovers of electro wave eleven songs in balance from dark minimal electro and synthpop. As for the single, Comando Suzie, is formed by Raul Lopez, Ella and helped out by Demian (active as O Paradis, as you probably already know). If I'd tell that it's the first time that I listen to electronic Spanish music I'd lie, because I know Aviador Dro (best known as the Spanish Kraftwerk even if most of their songs aren't comparable to the ones of the German gods as they sound different and born from from a totally different background). Instead for Comando Suzie I'd avoid any link to Kraftwerk as this time we have something different: Comando Suzie play a minimal electro pop a melancholic and dark but also capable of proposing potential hits like "Descabello" (arranged differently it could be a dance hit) or a dark anthem like the following "Disciplina". Proposing a blend of Die Form meet Telex the trio made a good debut CD that unfortunately has been printed into a limited edition of only 333 copies. Check them on the Punch Records page and hurry!

The Crystalline Effect: Hypothermia

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Jan 14 2008
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Artist: The Crystalline Effect (@)
Title: Hypothermia
Format: CD EP
Label: Advoxya Records (@)
Distributor: DSBP
Rated: *****
Well, I just noticed that I’m a bit late with the review on this release, so let’s hope the best that I can resist the spoken curses of the Siberian tiger :-P . The Australian duo of THE CRYSTALLINE EFFECT is one of the new signed artists to the growing Advoxya-armada consisting of Pete Crane and Elenor Rayner. Although I had discovered them only with some compilation appearances (Crash Frequency, Interbreeding) before, this bands has a past with a previously released album "Glass" out on the defunct Polish label Black Flames. This seems to be a fact which still hurts the band, because thanks to the not-happened promotion efforts of the undergoing Black Flames label, the sales of their debut went down to be almost ridiculous. Musically and technically there’s nothing to complain with the efforts of this duo. They play live as often as possible in every thinkable country, they are active members of the Australian Crash-Frequency-community, they invest a lot into self-promotion, Pete is also a member of PLAGUE SEQUENCE, another international recognized act – in short, they’re one of those bands a label nowadays wishes to sign with. This EP nevertheless is the result of a bad happening for this band, because this release was initially planned to be out under the title "Do Not Open". But since the complete content of the originally planned EP went illegally online on a Russian piracy download portal, band and label agreed to refresh the track list and to offer the listeners some more exclusive stuff. So you’ll get here some newer recordings of the band which offer a decent look-out to the upcoming new album. And with 14 tracks this EP is still richly filled. "Hypothermia", the title track is a straight and catchy moving Futurepop-tune, which could give out a small club hit. The initially planned title track "Do Not Open" rather represents the more-Trip-Hop side of this duo. Several remix works accomplishing this EP, you’ll get to hear some cool tunes by BLANK, IMPLANT, NEGATIVE FORMAT, URCEUS EXIT, NEIKKA RPM and both Advoxya-bands CB and SCHYZZO.COM. You’ll see on this illustrate list that most of the acts share the sort of more "intelligent" produced Electronica efforts – this fits well with the diverse attitude of THE CRYSTALLINE EFFECT. This is a quite good and regarding the chosen sounds on-top of the times released EP, which guarantees valuable stuff to listen and to dance. A nice appetizer to their next album.

EMPIRE STATE HUMAN: Rarity?

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Jan 12 2008
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Artist: EMPIRE STATE HUMAN (@)
Title: Rarity?
Format: CD
Label: Ninthwave (@)
Rated: *****
Soon available on iTunes or on Amazon, RARITY? is the counterpart to the first Empire State Human compilation "Popularity? and it contains seventeen tracks of remixes, unreleased and compilation tracks. For every ESH fan this download only album is a real bonanza as it gathers great tunes that are difficult to find: their covers of "Together in electric dreams" (the original was played by Moroder/Oakey), Eurythmics' "Love is a stranger", Fixx's "Saved by zero", Boytronic's "Photographs" and Dead Or Alive's "Special star". The four remixes (specially Qubiq's ones) give to the tracks a new appeal with a particular sensual dancey approach. RARITY? despite all these facts (good amount of tracks, rare ones, covers, remixes) it's unbelievably enjoyable by whom don't know Empire State Human at all and I find this a fantastic thing to tell about a band but if you already know ESH, you are already aware of this! P.s. Here you can find all the songs informations http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendID=164650750&blogID=331767818

CELLULOIDE: Naphtaline LP

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Jan 12 2008
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Artist: CELLULOIDE (@)
Title: Naphtaline LP
Format: CD
Label: Boredom Product (@)
Rated: *****
Partially available since 2003 at the band's website, NAPHTALINE is a tribute E.P. which has now been expanded and released on CD by Celluloide thanks to their label Boredom Product. I already appreciated their version of classic of the 80's which span from pop to new wave/goth arriving to electronic pop concerning the unreleased tracks and the ones which have been previously available only on compilations. Recorded during pauses they did on recording sessions (this is why the tracks have the same sets of sounds. They weren't able to change them because of the songs the were recording) the thirteen tracks of NAPHTALINE transpose songs like "Amoreux solitaires" (cult song of the early 80's by the French pop icon called Lio), Dead Can Dance's "In power we entrust the love advocated", The Cure's "Three imaginary boys", Siouxsie's "Happy house" and Lush's (do you remember them? They were one of the first shoegazer band that signed to 4AD. Personally I have only their first E.P.s and their album "Gala" because after that they kinda lost their touch) "Lights from a dead star" into something particular thanks to their bleeping cold electro style. These are the tracks you can still find on the website and that will be still available even if the album is out and these are the tracks which impressed me most because I knew really well the original ones and I think that it isn't easy to do good and personal versions of other genres' tunes which are deep rooted into people's personal track list. The other seven tracks, instead consider classic bands of the electronic scene but Celluloide did a good move by picking Depeche Mode's "Reason man" along with "Somebody" (track which have been speed up a little) because the occasional Depeche Mode listener don't know know this song which they performed only live during their early years. The other tracks are Camouflage's "Love is a shield", Boytronic's "Luna Square", Dark Distant Spaces' "Fashion", Trisomie 21's "Logical Animals" and Sista Manned Pa Jorden's "L'air". In my opinion this is an album to get but this time you have the opportunity to check half of it, so basically you'll be able to judge by yourself, but I know you'll agree with me.


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