Music Reviews



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Artist: Hungry Lucy
Title: Pulse Of The Earth
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Rated: *****
Hungry Lucy have been around for over a decade, and I've definitely enjoyed everything that I've heard from them in the past. "Pulse Of The Earth" is to the best of my knowledge the fourth full length album from this trip-hop/ electro-pop/ darkwave duo, and it is in a somewhat more organic direction than their previous releases. By "organic", I guess I mean that while the songs are still heavily electronic, there is also quite a lot of piano and occasional string work mixed in as well, and also there is a little more emphasis on Christa Belle's vocals (not that she was at all lacking in vocal presence in the past). These are all definitely good changes.

All of the 10 tracks here are extremely well produced and arranged, with a very potent emotional resonance to them.
These songs are all very lush and dramatic, both in theme and in sound, much like their contemporaries BloodWire (who I like a great deal).




It's hard to pick favorites from these tracks, since they're all quite good, but there are definitely a few that stand out: "Balloon Girl", with it's catchy chorus yet somewhat sombre tone (it kind of makes me think of what Depeche Mode could sound like with a female vocalist), "Bumble", which reminds me a little bit of mid-nineties era Tori Amos, and "The Standing Ones", which has another amazing chorus, as well as some orchestral stabs in the middle that seem quite close to the opening part of the imperial march from Star Wars. "Sunday Smiled" is also a highlight for me as well. But like I said, all of these songs are great, so it's hard to choose.


All in all, "Pulse Of The Earth" is a warm, beautiful piece of dark electronic pop music. It is currently available as a free download, so you have no excuse not to check out this masterpiece. You won't regret it, I promise!



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Artist: ATTRITION (@)
Title: Ephemera
Format: CD
Label: Two Gods
Rated: *****
Originally released in 1995, after Attrition changed or updated their sound on the albums "A tricky business" and "The hidden agenda", EPHEMERA sees the band producing an instrumental soundtrack album for the second time after 1982's "Death house". The main differences between the two is that on EPHEMERA Matin had new digital keyboards and samplers on his hands to experiment with. If "Death house" was sounding dark and deeply influenced by the use of analogue synths, EPHEMERA, thanks to the new technologies, had a wider sound palette. Percussions, vocal samples, piano, organs, strings and digital sweeps were the core sounds that Martin used to write five long (almost ten minutes each) tracks that were aiming to explore different sides of the themes he usually covers: love, death, religion, sex and despair. "The Long Wait", "A Great Desire", "The Big Lie", "Wetenschap" and "Lang Zal Jij Leven" have a richer "open sound" but I feel that they are also a bit dispersive. Probably the new tools offered too many sounds and options and this didn't help Martin focusing. This new edition offers the same tracklisting without bonuses but, as usual for the new reissues, it has been remastered.
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Artist: SIMULACRA
Title: There Is A Fountain Filled With Blood
Format: CD
Label: Consouling (@)
Rated: *****
Co-produced by Consouling and No Angels Productions (www.no.angels.glt.pl), THERE IS A FOUNTAIN FILLED WITH BLOOD is the latest album by Miguel Boriau's Simulacra. Already active also with Weihan, Mannus, Beyond Infinity and Nihilum, Miguel, since 2006, made of Simulacra his main musical project. Printed in 500 copies and released the next month, THERE IS A FOUNTAIN FILLED WITH BLOOD presents to the lover of sidereal dark ambient five tracks of gloomy icy drones. "Unsullied by the touch of time", "There is a fountain filled with blood", "In solitary confinement", "I have no blood | I have no heart" and "Above me only a shimmering light" (remixed by Mystified) offer hypnotic soundscapes where humming sounds blend forming light melodies that are finding themselves lose in a sea of torment. Focused on the bleak effect created, Miguel, didn't change much the sound/frequencies of the tracks and sometimes you feel that something is missing. Mystified, on their mix, offer a similar sound but playing a bit with melodies resulting interesting.
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Artist: URAL UMBO
Title: Ural Umbo + Latent Defects
Format: CD
Label: Utech Records (@)
Rated: *****
Formed by Reto Mäder (Sum of R, RM74) and Steven Hess (On, Haptic) Ural Umbo release on Utech Records their self titled début album. The nine track of the CD present a wide palette of influences and sounds. The opening track "The Lights Would Stop Flickering" recalls me the first Coil vinyl release "How to destroy angels", because of its gong/cymbal sounds but soon after the duo show us their true spirit by adding French horn, guitar drones and a xylophone. "Theme of the Paranormal Feedback" is a kaleidoscope of guitar improvisation duetting with cymbals. Toward the end of the track, from the chaos, rise a feedback melody which add a particular melancholic effect. "Förlåta Jag" mix guitar drones, slow drum beats and horns making result Codeine an happy band. "Voices from the Room Below" mix drones, metallic percussions and feedback while the following "Don't Eat Carrots, My Little Ghost Horse" sounds quite rarefied with its mix of clean electric guitar spare sounds, light guitar drones and little-bells. "Stumbling Upon Blood and Mercury" is a tense tune with low guitar drones and metallic percussions. On its middle a drum starts its funeral beat and between rising high frequency guitar drones a two notes catchy melody cries like a siren. "Among the Bones" is another track that got my attention because of its jazzy approach using organ sounds as background while brushes run on a snare drum and guitar sounds clashes creating sometimes some melody. Also available as mp3/flac download is a sister mini album titled LATENT DEFECTS". It is based on the sounds of the album but it shows the minimal side of Ural Umbo: its six tracks have less sounds interactions and I can define them as monolithic. Personally I prefer the album, because it is kinda extreme but more varied.
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Artist: POEME ELECTRONIQUE
Title: The Echoes Fade
Format: 12"
Label: Anna Logue Records (@)
Rated: *****
We left Poeme Electronique two years ago with the release of a renewed version of The Echoes Fade 7" and we already knew that something else was going to be released but I wasn't thinking it would be this huge! THE ECHOES FADE double vinyl album contains sixteen songs recorded during the 1981/1982 period of which fourteen are never been released before! Basically this is an extended version of the first Poeme Electronique unreleased album. The first record begins with the original 7" versions of "The echoes fade" plus "Voice" and follows with "Rendezvous" and "She's an image" the first tracks of the unreleased lot. Since the first melodies I hear echoes of Gary Numan and Toyah/Nina Hagen for the vocal parts and this is so true on "Theories" thanks to the rich female vocals and the synth lines. With "Inside his Head" the atmosphere gets darker and robotic late 70s synth lines (it recalls me of "Oxygene") are the perfect background to a theatrical vocal performance. A perfect atmosphere for a song that talks about someone in coma (the refrain says: "Oh God don't let him stay this way, hear my prayer and what I say, release him from the cage he's in, bring him out of this tormenting"). Also "Fragile" offers interesting atmospheres coupled with upbeat rhythms, a catchy refrain and tons of synth leads and bleeps. The second vinyl opens with a slow epic/atmospheric tune titled "It's in the atmosphere", it introduce you to a sort of horror poem where the refrain says: "It's in the atmosphere, on the wings of the breeze, the force of almighty, in the tombs of the beasts". Also "This night" is quite atmospheric while the following "My complicated personality" mix upbeat tempos, pop sensibility and a certain dark feeling. Poeme Electronique used electronic equipment but weren't minimal at all (all their songs have many synth sounds and rich arrangements) and unfortunately they had to wait for thirty years to get the exposure they deserve! If you are a vinyl addict don't miss this luxurious gate-fold edition with glossy inner sleeves with lyrics of all the songs, as well as individual mini 7" sleeves for each of them. Next to follow Anna Logue will issue also the CD but I don't know if it will include all the tracks.
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