Music Reviews



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Artist: Zu (@)
Title: Carboniferous
Format: CD
Label: Ipecac recordings (@)
Rated: *****
Zu is one of the most interesting bands to come out of Italy in a long long time. A baritone saxophone player, a bass player and a drummer who also does electronics and Mellotron, is the Rome-based personnel who fuel the fire that burns within Zu, with a flame so high that even even Mr. Bungle/Fantomas' Mike Patton and Melvins' King Buzzo have taken notice and lend their talents and abilities to "Carboniferous" (along with a bunch of other local collaborators). Zu has also previously collaborated with Damo Suzuki, Thurston Moore, Mats Gustafsson, Guy Picciotto, Jim O'Rourke, Eugene Chadbourne, No Means No, Karate and many more, so obviously they understand the importance of exposure and cross-pollination, which is something their music thrives on, is full of and is based on. "Carboniferous" (released on Patton's label Ipecac) is equal parts heavy metal, avantgarde jazz, industrial experimental music. The sheer fury and sonic assault of the rhythm section reminds of Neurosis, Zorn's Moonchild/Crucible, Melvins or even Sepultura at times but the addition of the deeply resonating bari really takes this to a place where no one has (or very few have) gone before. Obviously when the sax whales and screams incessantly it's hard not to think of Zorn's amazing playing, but then when it blends in as part of the overall mood or of the percussive patterns it almost sounds a little bit like Lou Reed's latest incarnation of the Metal Machine Trio. Needless to say the pieces where Patton lends his voice are incredibly powerful and anthemic (in the first of the two he screams Moonchild/Crucible style but in the closing piece of the CD he growls and regurgitates and even manages to sound like a cross between a didgeridoo and a tuvan throat singer).
Overall I love this record. It is different from what's out there, diverse within, powerful and aggressive but innovative and interesting at the same time. Highly recommended if you like extreme stuff that's out there and yet lets you do some head banging!
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Artist: YUMMA-RE
Title: EDEN
Format: CD
Label: MY KINGDOM MUSIC (@)
Distributor: AUDIOGLOBE
Rated: *****
YUMMA-RE are the new ADD N To X but more organic-rock-based, we can hear inside Talking Heads, King Crimsom with a female approach, for sure inside their art there is nothing of USUAL and COMMON, these kind of concept are banned in this great project. Yumma-Re are Portished with the sense of irony of Talking Heads and the acid style of ADD N To X: Yumma-Re is pure Genius! The artistic path they follow seems driven by the god of Chaos in person, and I confess that I like it. Every track is a remix of the track itself with at least 5-6 genre!!! This work is an experience difficult to explain and it's something really nice to hear. It's a STRAY kind of music that is not only played is a challenge for the listener to feel all the musical sensations YUMMA-RE plays with and in the same time is vital, is not a menaceful of obscure, it is music perfect for a noir film based in Mexico or in a place where there are no limits for excess. The last track, a sort of PALOMA under LSD is a master piece of "cruelty" :) They soar among JAZZ, New Wave, Electronic, Glitch they are sons of the modern sound engineering and in the same time they seem to surf on you tube in a lysergic state. This band is really something new and powerful, they are put in their art the messy culture we live; they make a zapping with music and styles; and I think that are more more more funny than Portished. Plus they are Italian: congratulations ragazzi!
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Artist: Lili Roquelin (@)
Title: Lili Roquelin
Format: CD EP
Rated: *****
LR is something very peculiar and precious in the indie music media scape, she is a solo artist that had the ability and the art+heart, above all, to put with a great success in the social network arena her voice. In many sense is the proof that the talent pays sooner or later and her art is so genuine and honest that every written word is not enough to describe her potential. Lily is a great singer. It's far better to hear her voice, her passion and her pure talent. For sure she has to measure her talent inside a band but I think that for now she could play her game "alone" by the way her Sound Engineering had a good part in this EP. And to be more clear what I would love is to hear her great voice singing covers to spread more her huge talent. Please LILY don't stop singing.
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Artist: ARTESIA
Title: Llidaw
Format: CD
Label: Prikosnovenie (@)
Distributor: AUDIOGLOBE
Rated: *****
Guys, I know very well this area, because when it's possible I escape the world to reach Bretagne to feel these atmospheres. This project follows the rules and path signed by Breton traditional music but obviously there is more: the SYNTH used to create and entire world of sensations. We gotta stress this point b/c this "genre" live a double level of intensity: the first one is the tradition, that here is very well respected and second one is made out by synthesizer's carpet that sustains the tradition and creates a sort of mantra really deep and huge. Artesia wants to bring (TO CALL) the listener inside Broceliande forest, we literally hear the wind and the rain and knowing very well the smell, the "fragrance" of the Bretagne it's very hard to me not to give 5 star to this project. Everything is in the right place above all the passion for that immense culture; best track the SIXTH!!!
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Artist: ELANE
Title: THE SILVER FALLS
Format: CD
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
ELANE is inviting us in a journey not so absurd or impossible, neither innatural, it's a journey inside our ancestral memories, a trip that has an aim very straight and simple: survive to the modern craziness. Elane use the music and the myths to do that and this art is not only great celtic music, well played and well recorded, is a tool to make better our daily-life and it's really useful to quit the distressing world we are forced to live. All the tracks are inviting the listener to do something, above all to discover a land of mystery and freedom, a world of hidden adventures lost in time. Something metal lies beneath this work a secret sound force that is able to rise up the level of db of some tracks.
The Ballads here are tormented but not necrophiles, all the "lights" suggested by the artists through sounds are low but not ominous, if you know northern light of Europe this concept is very easy to understand the inspirations of the band. I guess that ELANE is a borderline project, ready to follow the Breton lesson or to take the metal-way, in both case the ideas inside the project are very focused and well tuned. In some sense and from my personal POV the music carpet are very cinematographic and the lyrics cast images together with sound and also depict wide grey-clouded landscape. It's a project that suggests to the listener some memories and the desire to reach something we cannot define simply with words, a must to hear and to feel.
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