Music Reviews



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Artist: TRIKE
Title: Trike And The Vikings
Format: CD
Label: Cheap Satanism (@)
Rated: *****
After three self made album, the Canadian synth extravaganza duo Trike are landing for their new album, on the Belgian label Cheap Satanism. They won $20,000 on Canadian television/radio competition 'The Gong Show', landing a Yamaha Equipment Sponsorship, performing over 200 shows in Europe and had their 'The New Album' reach number 6 on Canadian Kootenay radio and that's quite something. The fourteen songs of their first studio album are in balance between joyous synthpop and acoustic guitarism with tons of 80s influences which goes to The Specials (check the blow section of the opening "Player in love"), the B-52s or English indie pop labels like Postcard Records or Sarah Records. Their music reflects their approach to life as to me they seem to be free from any boundaries, so if "The trikey" sounds dancey, "Smack me around" could be perfect for Franz Ferdinand (so at least they would do something good after their debut album) and "Politics of love" sounds good as a melancholic Blur tune. At first TRIKE AND THE VIKINGS sounded like a joke to me but after a couple of spins I realized that Trike are playing but in a deadly serious way. Check their video for "my little pony", it made my day...
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Artist: Memmaker
Title: How To Enlist In A Robot Uprising: Deluxe Edition
Format: CD
Label: Artoffact Records (@)
Rated: *****
This is album is the reissue of the debut album issued in 2008 on Hive Records. The interest in this band owe to the fact that Memmaker is a side project of Iszoloscope. If album like "the audient void" lied on a mix of harsh noise and ambient, this project is pure EBM with a carefully chosen palette of synth. Nothing really new, in fact, but dance music is not a genre known for experimentation but for powerful beat and synths.
After an intro track like "prophecy" with atmospheric synths, the beat start with "ascent" and, then, the album goes almost linear until the tenth track "insomnia", a sort of chill-out before the final assault, in the original relase, of "deception" but, in this release, two bonus tracks gives other fuel to the dance.
This album is a well produced bunch of beats that will swear the alternative dancefloor.
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Kamp Holland
Format: 2 x 12" vinyl
Label: Enfant Terrible (@)
Rated: *****
KAMP HOLLAND is a new double vinyl compilation of Enfant Terrible which gathers sixteen bands coming from Holland. The label in the past focused their releases on minimal electronic / experimental pop and industrial electronic sounds influenced or produced during the late 70s / mid 80s. With KAMP HOLLAND Enfant Terrible is redefining things presenting sixteen tracks where some of them have been influenced by the sound covered by the label during the past years and some others are influencing the label for its future releases. Has something changed? Well, yes. I think that this is the most heterogenous release of Enfant Terrible as we find: pulsating and menacing electro sounds (good one "Bye bye" by Lesbian Mouseclicks), synth retro sounds (Bakeliet with "Don't Let Them Know", Neurobit with "Inner Hideaway", Pornologic with "Pterodactyl Extraordinaire" and Milligram Retreat with "AllÃégement"), great synth electro wave (really nice and melodic "Ruimtevaart Vooruit" by Staatseinde and a good dancey one "Desert" by Hunter Complex), orchestral breakbeat (Autonon's "Not For Immortals" reminds me of Venetian Snares), dark electronic sounds ( Milligram Retreat with "AllÃégement"), experimental noisy tunes (Puin+Hoop - Slaapstaking), percussive post punk (Hadewych with "Apse" sound like a mix of Einsturzende Neubauten and UK Decay), circus weird experimental tunes (Logosamphia with "La Hars" sounds like a 60s hammond toon song mixed with breakbeat on the final part), pure pulsating electronic noise (Peter Quistgard with "NONO" sound like a gabber track composed with a Commodore 64 while Murw with "Een Soort Van Geel" sound like a throbbing electro noise collage) and melancholic pop wave (like the closing "Itlien" by Treasure Of Grundo). Available in mid June.
Jun 11 2010
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Artist: Slick Idiot
Title: Sucksess
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Itchy Records
Rated: *****
KMFDM members En Esch and Guenter Schulz formed Slick Idiot after the 1999 temporary breakup of their main project, but have since carried on releasing 2 remix albums and a total of 3 studio albums ("Sucksess" being the third of those). This album features some live drums (Gregg Ziemba) and both male and female vocals (En Esch and Erica Dilanjian) as well as many of the signature sounds and techniques of KMFDM's two members (read intense EBM programming and guitar riffs). Overall the album is maybe a bit more minimal and less aggressive that what KMFDM might have accustomed you to, but there is plenty of hard hitting tracks left in there. Rhythmically "Sucksess" explores a variety of territories, including noise industrial ("Haller"), drum'n'bass ("Last Kiss"), four on the floor dance-industrial ("Wer Bist Du?"), techno ("Burn For Me"), more electro-rock/metal ("I.I.W.I.I.", "Daydreams") and of course the classic EBM sound you all know and love. Variety is also to be found musically, with a vague middle-eastern echoes in the "Imago" intro and weird musical cameos, like a hawaiian guitar intro... Slick Idiot is currently on tour in the US (throughout July) and will be selling this CD at shows only (for now), so if you want to get a copy and see the band live check out their website for dates.
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Artist: PATRICK PULSINGER
Title: Impassive Sky
Format: CD
Label: Disko B
Rated: *****
Active since early nineties, Patrick Pulsinger is releasing this month his fourth album IMPASSIVE SKIES. On this new album Patrick succeeded into conjugate different musical influences under the flag of techno music. Jazz, glitch, electro and techno could seem really difficult to get along but he, helped by friends like Fennesz, Franz Hauntizinger, Abe Duque, ElektroGuzzi, G Rizo and Teresa Rotschopf, composed eight tracks where jazz improvisations duet with electronic sounds. The result is really intriguing and we pass from the syncopated techno with trumpet solos of the opening "Grey gardens" to the dance dark electro with Detroit flavor of "A to Z" (where Teresa Rotschopf vocal performance help is making of this a killer song), passing from the piano rhodes inserts of "Future back" and the funky guitar of "Blame it" (tracks featuring Abe Duque). IMPASSIVE SKIES is a multifaceted album that will reveal its essence only after some listening sessions but you'll be satisfied to find yourself discovering a new bit each time.
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