Music Reviews



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Artist: Greifenkeil (@)
Title: Blood Mystery
Format: CD
Label: GrenTzwert Musiclabel (@)
Distributor: Alive
Rated: *****
Again sorry for another too late done review, but at least the heap here on my table shrinks a bit. Germany’s Dark Electro/Ambient art-project GREIFENKEIL returns with a new full-length album again signed and published to the Munich-based Grentzwert label. The resume in advance: also this new album requires the full attention of the listener, since the musically course once again draws influences of the darkest music styles electronic music can deliver. A. von Greifenkeil, the mastermind behind this project, has again created a sonic assault, which integrates the darkest Dark Electro, Dark Ambient and Powernoise impressions, at times all styles pressed into a single track ("Vendetta"). New and worth to mention is the fact, that A. von Greifenkeil is able to watch over genre boundaries, also the integration of guitar riffs ("Blood War") is nowadays an allowed stylistically element. If the chosen album-title may suggests a close dedication to some terror-EBM- or vampire-related content, GREIFENKEIL has never been and surely will never be thrown into this redundant field. "Blood Mystery" also hasn’t got anything to do with a normal biologically process, it rather offers a higher, but still mysterious and intellectual content. It’s a bit to keep the inner out, the might of blood seems to have a deeper meaning to A. von Greifenkeil, as he announced, that this will be only the starter for more excursion. Also the length of the main tracks – mostly provided with 8 + minutes playing time - are speaking for a rather artistically content, instead to follow a Mainstream-oriented "chorus-bridge-refrain" kind of work. GREIFENKEIL offers once again an amazing sound excursion, which even has the ability to touch a deeper part of your mind. It’s definitively more than a usual Hellectro act has to offer. A video edit of the audio content on the main title "Blood Mystery" accomplishes this album (watch out at Youtube for this act...), while some first live performances of this project have meanwhile occurred.

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Artist: Autodafeh
Title: Hunt For Glory
Format: CD
Label: Sigsaly Transmissions (@)
Distributor: Nova MD
Rated: *****
The old-school EBM-movement brings out more and more promising newcomers, which may haven’t eaten something like innovation with spoons, but they awake the ideology of some long forgotten days. Technically spoken, EBM remains EBM and hasn’t too much changed – just in case you don’t accept the Harsh Hellectro-/Trance-/Techno-driven formula as being a comparable style. That means that some sounds, beats, samples or messages, which have been up-to-date in 1988, have survived the time. Some frustration has become imminent, since the Hellectro-rush still celebrates promising sales and receives still attention. Same also for the Swedish newcomers of AUTODAFEH, although there’s an important point, which draws a big difference to any "get-hard-be-strong" artist out of this style: the members of AUTODAFEH aren’t at all teenagers getting some first experiences to manipulate synth and drum computers. They are rather elders with some rich musically background. The existence of AUTODAFEH can be may explained that the band members Mika Rossi, Anders Olsson and Jesper Nilsson got fed up with the current styles. "Hunt For Glory" surely collects all audio results of their mutual time after forming this band, because AUTODAFEH has been built in late 2007. The musically formula behind AUTODAFEH is quite reduced with its hard pumping EBM bass lines, a solid kick and snare work and two male shouters providing mostly easy-minded lyrics with a singing-along-guarantee. That is all pretty much along the expected alley, but also the production is crystal-clear and like the state-of-art. Flaws? Not really, maybe some hints: I would suggest for the future to reduce the inserts of the second co-shouter a bit – at times this repetitive kind reminds on a parrot ("World Is Dying"), a bit lesser could be more. Of course, this album is a must-have for any fan of the old-school EBM sound following pretty much the ideas of some early NEP/242-productions. Lets wait and see, what ideas AUTODAFEH will be able to integrate to reach more an own unique sound for the future.
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Artist: ARTRIDGE (@)
Title: Butterfly Wing Theory - Pt.1 (Think Tank)
Format: CD
Label: Interlink Audio (@)
Rated: *****

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Four years after their second album Artridge present their latest one titled BUTTERFLY WING THEORY PT.1 (THIN TANK). First of a two part project, the album has eleven new tracks that musically differ from what you can find on their previous album "Finished Soundtracks For Unshot Films". Dropped the industrial ambient influences Christoph Mainz and Robin Pleil collaborated with Ben Makinen of Area 15 and Christoph Hellmich of Nautilus (they took care of the percussive parts of the album). Recorded during different night sessions the album is keeping the soundtrack approach to sound but adding a jazzy/post rock attitude with sprinkles of dub (see "Milkbar" or the bass section of "Worldpool") and electronic (see the early sequenced bass lines of "Spec ops"). Listening to the album I can't give an exact definition of how it sounds because as usual Artridge like to dare by mixing genres and sounds. The most important thing to underline is that they didn't create a mishmash of whatever music could sound artsy or inspired. They created a good tracklisting of post rock ambient tracks where samples enrich the classic drum/guitar/bass guitar triptych where the unconventional approach to sound makes sense.
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Artist: LAURENT PERRIER
Title: As Far As
Format: CD
Label: Sound On Probation (@)
Rated: *****
Created for the Alban Richard’s choreographic show of the same name, AS FAS AS is the newest work by Laurent Perrier. Slightly different from it original version used on the performance, the album is divided into six minimal ambient experimental suites. Most of the tracks are based on minimal variations of orchestra strings/choir section and on most cases the final result is quite anxiety-inducing. For example "As far as Pt.1" starts with drones loops creating hypnotic sounds. After ten minutes sampled violins start to play dissonant chords which little by little become more insidious. The second part continues with the hypnotic loop approach using strings but this time we have also treated choirs sounds. The result is quite good and experimental if you think that this has been used on a theater. The third part is the quieter one having slow string variations. The fourth part is one of the scariest of the lot with its use of female choirs and looped strings. Try to imagine opera female vocals reversed and mixed with drones made of choirs and strings. The fifth part is the one I found less interesting because is focused on digital rumbling noises for its first half and then sticks on few strings loops. The closing sixth part is based on strings and orchestral minimal variations and to me sounded a little long with its 10' length. All in all AS FAR AS is an interesting work that will be appreciated by experimental and open minded dark ambient/industrial lovers.
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Incendium II
Format: CD
Label: Loki Foundation (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Along with Cold Meat Industry, Loki Foundation is since 1991 one of the best labels into the dark ambient/industrial genre and INCENDIUM II is a great way to discover why. Spanning through the last three years of Loki and Power & Steel releases (there are no unreleased tracks but here you can find tracks previously released only on vinyl and it costs only 3 euros) INCENDIUM II presents the main label's acts with representative tracks. Herbst9 are here with a track from their "Buried under time and sand" and with one from their collaboration with Z'ev, Antlers Mulm present "Sunflowers" (a beautiful minimal electronic melodic track picked from the "Of withered sparks" album). First Law, Inade and Ionosphere are present with two tracks for each of them (some of them are excerpts of long tracks). You can also find excerpts from the Vestigial/Penjaga Insaf great split 12" and if you missed it, by listening to these three minutes from each track, you'll ask for more. Good label compilation, your curiosity could be fulfilled for a cheap price! Here's the whole tracklist:

CIRCULAR The Triangular Center
FJERNLYS Intermediate Nature
ANTLERS MULM Sunflowers
HERBST9 4000 Years Of Damascus
PREDOMINANCE Quantum Statics
FIR§T LAW Bad Influence (excerpt)
INADE Divine Hybrid (excerpt)
INADE Kwa Non Se Part II (excerpt)
LAND:FIRE Space Interferometry Mission (excerpt)
IONOSPHERE Gravitation In The Mind
FIR§T LAW Creating Worlds (excerpt)
INADE Uninhabited Red
VESTIGIAL Summoned By Panopticonian Flames (excerpt)
PENJAGA INSAF Tenangan (excerpt)
IONOSPHERE Meta III
HERBST9 vs Z'EV Enshrinement (Maschinenkult pt.2)
EX.ORDER Skillful Killing
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