Music Reviews



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Artist: MOB RESEARCH
Title: Holy City Zoo
Format: CD
Label: Echozone
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
HOLY CITY ZOO is the debut album of an industrial rock super group which gathers ex Mission/Peter Murphy guitarist Mark Thwaite, Warrior Soul's Kory Clarke, ex Queens Of The Stone Age's drummer Nick Lucero and ex Killing Joke/Prong/ Ministry bass player Paul Raven. To tell the truth this album isn't only the Mob Research debut album, it's also a tribute to a great man and icon of industrial rock music Paul Raven, who died just after ending the recording sessions of this album in 2007. In these two years Thwaite and Clarke completed vocals and overdubs on the ten songs. If you know the previous Raven's bands you could imagine the sound you can find into this CD where granitic guitars and blasting rhythm section duet creating an industrial rock grinding machine. While the sound is solid and distorted Kory and Mark wink their eyes to melodic hooks that are able to please a wider audience (i.e. people who likes also glam metal and hard rock). The album contains also plenty of remixes with seven songs reworked by SinDaddy, Terminator, Akanoid, Programmist, Electrofish and DJ Rob. Each of them catch the melodic essence of the tracks distorting them, dilating them adding a little of danceable touch or making of them a crazy digital hardcore tune like the 322 Cubed remix of "Skull and bones" by SinDaddy.
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Artist: MISS YETTI
Title: Zuckerbrot Und Peitsche
Format: CD
Label: Gold Und Liebe
Rated: *****
Released after two years after her previous album "Insights" (her second), Miss Yetti is back with ZUCKERBROT UND PEITSCHE (that is meaning "The carrot and the stick"). Henrietta Schemall helped by René Werner Bessel worked during these couple of years at the redefinition of her music thanks to a minimal approach to sound (often looped melodies and rhythms have been used) and thank also to the use of her voice. Electro tracks (see the nice "Why" or the particular instrumental "Auro aurora" which mix semi i.d.m. rhythms and synth melodic lines) are alternated with ones sounding more techno and hypnotic where vocals, if present, are used to enrich the sound (check "Nass" or "Lost"). The album sounds different from the previous ones and for sure Miss Yetti sound is like a work in progress and I appreciated also the bonus track/video of "Blasebalg" where she worked with D.A.F.'s Robert Gorl composing an instrumental track that unfortunately didn't amaze me because it seems to lack of original ideas (it sounds like a demo where a synth loop and a 4/4 bass drum are the core of the track where some noises are added here and there). ZUCKERBROT UND PEITSCHE sounds nice but you feel that something is still missing.
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Artist: CROATAN ENSEMBLE
Title: Without
Format: CD
Label: Eh? (@)
Rated: *****
Interesting duo here, differently from several releases on Eh!?, Bill K and Iason P are not dealing with the electro-acoustic thing, nay everything is more dilated, more ethereal and also much more listenable, also for ears that are not trained to this kind of sound. Sometimes it reminded me a strange kind of mix of Kevin Drum drowning in a Kranky pool. This couple of musicians play strings, laptop, electronics, mics, pedals, synths and another bunch of weird electronic devices, but the global sound is less electronic oriented than you could have guessed by reading this list of instruments. Freaky music for freaky people, but Croatan Ensamble are not just playing something simply psychedelic, the music is overall quite ethereal and has a sort of ascension feel. I could help you by writing this’ one of those bands stretching the songs/sounds as much as they can, it implies they introduce changes of notes/sounds/atmospheres really gradually in order to avoid interrupting the trip. Sometimes I think they still have to add something more to reach an higher compositional level but I can assure you the first time I’ve played this cd it was on Sunday right during a bath and my head started spinning with all of my thoughts.


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Artist: JACQUES DEMIERRE
Title: one is land
Format: CD
Label: Creative Sources (@)
Rated: *****
When approaching to cd I’ve to review in most of the cases during the very first listenings I don’t pay attention to the cover, to the line up and above all to the press sheet (and to be honest I never give that much about press sheets!), everything sounds like a good o a bad surprise, sometimes it’s just weird and this solo-piano cd belongs to the last option. When after several listening I went back to the cover of the cd I’ve found the solo pianist was Jacques Demierre, not that I know his discography that well, but I think I’ve heard him on some releases but sure you can bet I know this composer-musician from Geneve has played with many musicians and has been collaborating with some big names like Berry Guy just to mention one I guess many of you out there know quite well. Believe it or not I’ve been surprised by this swiss musician, I’ve to warn you this won’t be an easy listening but sure he did something quite unconventional. The first of the two compositions featured on this cd is a sort of warzone where Demierre turned the piano into a ruining factory: forte, fortissimo, louder than a drummer beating the shit out of his drum-kit, mid and low registers mixed in dissonance, no dynamic diminuendo everything remains as loud as fuck, every once in a while he throws in some quasi-intelligible chord but for the most of the time you’ll feel like the piano is falling from the top of a mountain. I’ve also tried to figure out if he ever played this piece live and if the audience was simply shocked or violated by such a performance. During the second composition the pianist opt for quietness, he probably plays the body of the piano and despite the silent start he keeps following a soft-rumorist edge, far from the first in-your ears total blast everything is more silent and moderated you have breaks, pauses, short phrases, soft concrete noises, strangulated notes but this time he’s never violent. Heavy Harsh work and surely nothing that relaxing but holy shit! Who ever wrote that music has to be relaxing?.

http://www.creativesourcesrec.com/images/cs131.jpg
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Artist: NICKER HILL ORCHESTRA (@)
Title: NICKER HILL ORCHESTRA All the different deaths....and rebirths
Format: CD
Label: In the bottle / Waiting Room
Rated: *****
I’ve read and heard many good things about this band and finally it happens that somebody has sent me their record for a review. If I were mighty Frans De Waard from Vital Weekly you can bet this full length would have been classified as "nothing new under the sun" infact we’re dealing with what some mighty easily describe as a post-rock/post-emo combo, but if you’re used to De Waard’s style as a reviewer, I’m sure you know that doesn’t imply we’re in front of a so and so band. That’s exactly the point: the band is good and sure the music is ok, sure it’s post rock/post-emo with those delayed/reverbered guitars sailing on a emphatic rock drumming, add the music has a slight prog-rock feel and I think you have all the elements you need to identify this unidentified "flying" object. Everybody is always looking for comparisons, I know, as I know musicians hate to be compared to this or that band, by the way this four piece reminds of early Tristeza meets Mogwai meets some soft parts from these quasi post rock bands that were on Temporary Residence, what differentiates them from so many boring imitators of the genre is that they have the strong-rock touch and the trippy prog-feel that comes out quite naturally therefore forget the dead boring side effect you suffered while listening many bands dealing with this style. I like some of their mid tempos with math-solutions you can hear in songs like "Shit you!", the cinematic feel is still there but they remind me also of a bunch of bands from the slow-core era. I think the band should be definitively catchy live, and if you dig the style it’s definitely worth of a try, the song-construction is good and dynamics give more and more points to listeneability of the work.
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