Music Reviews



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Artist: Rammstein
Title: Liebe is für Alle Da
Format: CD
Label: Pilgrim
Distributor: Universal
Rated: *****
This is quite the controversial album. Rammstein's sixth studio album in 15 years came out a few weeks ago in the middle of heavy promotional buzz and censorship. The first single from it is called "Pussy" (chorus goes "you've got a pussy, I have a dick-e, so what's the problem, let's do it quick"...) so it's obvious that they are trying to shake people up a bit by making this become their new anthem (and, maybe I am wrong but I am pretty sure it's also their first single in English). Germany marked the album as inappropriate for minors due to some of its lyrics and some graphic violence and nudity in the amazing cover art work of the 11-track version I have (a cleverly made 5-panel digipack that creates different scenes based on how it is folded and depicts some S/M scenes involving the band members with a style and colors that aim to look like an antique still life painting). Allegedly the band also promoted this album with a music video clip showing them engaging in sexual intercourse and made the video available on an x-rated site. The cherry on top of the pie is an overpriced limited edition collector's edition, which packages six dildos, a pair of handcuffs, some lube along with the CD in a sizable road case type metal box.
Obviously "Liebe is für Alle Da" (which means "love is there for everyone") is part of a well thought out marketing plan that probably left the only german band to ever reach stardom singing in German AND doing metal exactly where they wanted to be.
Strictly musically speaking the album packages powerful industrial metal although the band is increasingly less industrial and increasingly more metal (probably only the sounds of the drums and some keys are left as a testament of the more specifically industrial origins of the band). The band seems to have been acquiring a taste for faster beats and doesn't necessarily go for the big anthemic teutonic choirs any longer.
There are actually two versions of the album. The one I am reviewing contains 11 songs but there is an another version with the same title that contains 17 pieces, so if you are a fan I'd recommend going for that.
One last thing I have report about this CD is that it is one of these new CD types that will ONLY play in CD players and not in computers so you can't rip it, so if you want to put it on your iPod you better buy the digital version.
Artist: Mesh
Title: A Perfect Solution
Format: CD
Label: Dependent
Distributor: AL!VE
Rated: *****
Everybody who thinks that synthpop is all about perky prancing on the dance floor is given a chance by Mesh to reconsider their opinions. The album is telling a story of two people that formerly loved each other while now they just live together. It is redundant to explain that the album is oozing with pain. Every song copes with the topic from a different angle. And, honestly, every adult person knows what Mark is singing about here.
The opener "If We Stay Here, we’re dying" tells of an urgent necessity to make a change in the present situation and change the life, otherwise there is no real life. There is no real life without love. Just existence. The most overt way, if not the only one would be to break up the relationship. People who have nothing to tell to another, but the dreams are not impossible to come true if one makes the painful move while a brand new start is needed.
The cables on the CD-cover represent the support a relationship can grant the sides involved, but also the fetters every relationship brings with it.
"Only Better" was already released as a single and it tells about the bitterness of a separation and its necessity in the same time.
"Everything I made" reminds us that nobody starts a relationship with an intention to hurt a partner, but this is how things often unintentionally turn out.
"It’s so hard" tells of pointing blaming fingers at each other, while "everything we’re living for is gone." The situation will ruin both sides.
"Who says" is about the constant conflicts between the sides in the relation-shit.
"It’s Gone" is a monolog in front of the shatters of love while an acoustic guitar is played to add some emotionality to the electronic sound.
"Hope. Dream"and The Bitter End" are two prime class Mesh tracks to dance your behinds off. My legs move under the table already! "Want You" is about the gradual agonizing comprehension that the partner is not interested in you anymore and how one has to live and cope with this knowledge.
Mark is a talented vocalist. This is no news, but if you listen to the album closer, numerous further strengths on this British duo will become audible for you.
Some Greek sage... Or was he an Indian, or perhaps Chinese?... said centuries ago that it is easier to tell when the love starts than to tell when it ends. Would you disagree?
The title of the album is A Perfect Solution". I’m afraid Mesh mean a separation by that.
This is a very emotional album. The music is predominantly danceable, but the lyrics offer way more thought food than a traditional chorus by Scooter.
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anymore
Artist: The Orb
Title: Baghdad Batteries
Format: CD
Label: Malicious Damange records (@)
Distributor: Cargo
Rated: *****
The Orb need no introduction, they've been at it for longer than I can remember. "Baghdad Batteries" is the third installment in the Orbsession series and, differently from the first two volumes, is comprised of newly composed material written in their Berlin studio. Alex Paterson and Thomas Fehlmann give us eleven slow burning atmospheric floaters that gracefully flirt with occasional minimal techno beats and shades of world music (do I hear a kalimba?). If their different approaches to music are indeed divergent to certain extents (allegedly Paterson is said to be more about the hooks and sports a pronounced pop sensibility, while Fehlmann is more into his sounds) then I'd say the latter seems to have had the final say (especially in the first half of the record), but I think they both play nice on this record (no pun intended). The key element is the mood and the sonic palette is only an extension, a tool, to achieve the ambient nirvana the two have settled on. They are after all amongst the original masters of the ambient genre.
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anymore
Artist: NONMUSIC
Title: NOT EVERYTHING IS MADE IN CHINA
Format: CD
Label: ECHOZONE
Distributor: MASTERPIECE
Rated: *****
Slovenian music project, electronic rock, with a great pressure, ready for MOVIES sound tracks. They aren't only electronic is easy to hear a lot of acid sounds especially in the cover of "It's no good"...something Placebo-like but less friendly and definitely more hungry. NONM is a band that does want to like simply, their aim is to create some sound scape non properly rock-Indie based they have a world made of electronics vibes, straight drums and acid voice. In a word they are SPECIAL and not so common as they appears in a first sight, they are walking in a space they have already focused, very well focused. Gender Changer is a manifesto of this approach to stay in the rules but making out a sort of alteration of them. Best track DIGITAL CRY, that makes me aware that's true: Not everything is made in China and this Slovenian band is telling to us acidly.
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Artist: Kilowatt & Vanek
Title: FOCUS AND FLOW
Format: CD
Label: DEPENDENT
Distributor: MASTERPIECE
Rated: *****
Have you ever imagined an unplugged band with some neurotic filaments attached to a glitch downtempo dominion? K&V have this feature! And the result is something weird as a Cronenberg early movies. The symphony of oddities and micro-sounds and breakbeats they built around a vibrating and human touch based song is something very very very strange, unique. For sure is a work ready for those are searching something related to that kind of evolution built up by Portishead. Organic feeling perturbated by something from the electronic unconscious. The electronic sound enters inside the recorded voice and the processing of the voice itself brings the listener inside the peculiar and genius world of K&V. I gotta say that the work they made has an incredible freshness and in the same time is able to be complex like a Rubik's cube, layers of sound weave rendering out a work easy to be old after many playbacks.
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