Music Reviews



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Artist: CULTURAL AMNESIA (@)
Title: Enormous Savages Enlarged Edition
Format: CD
Label: Klang Galerie (@)
Rated: *****
Partially available on the limited edition vinyl album released by Anna Logue Records back in 2007 (see my article into the interviews section) and on the Vinyl On Demand double vinyl compilation (with different recordings of few songs), ENORMOUS SAVAGES sees a reissue on CD format of those recordings thanks to Klang Galerie and does it carrying some bonus tracks. The first ten tracks have been recorded during the 1981-1983 period of the band and the first nine have been issued on the vinyl and show very well their industrial post punk attitude (see my article and my "Press my hungry button" review for more informations about that period). What I'd like to examine here are the five songs of the second period of the band. Partially available into the limited 3" "Little savages" (that one had "syst.admin") and on line at the band's website (there I found "Contains", Theme from Cultural Amnesia" and "syst.admin" again) the tracks composed after year 2000 find a band still full of ideas and able to use new sounds. "It's coming" mixes driving distorted guitars, piano, synths and drums to form a semi spoken word that sounds like a roller coaster ride (with stops and go and that sensation of having your chest pushed). "Contains" it's a beautiful electro experimental tune where voice is used again like a semi spoken word. The sound is rich and the catchy acoustic guitar lines sounds perfect with all those electronics sounds that come and go. "I heard it on the radio" recalls a little the 80's atmosphere with a sort of electronic ballad with guitars that sounds like razors. In this way this sound is in opposition to the melancholy vocals. "Syst.admin" starts with a dissonant guitar that recalled me The Fall or A Witness while vocals sound like a sermon of a possessed priest. Everything is sustained by a syncopated drum. The Birthday Party on acid? "Theme from cultural amnesia" starts like a dissonant post rock track filtered by a broken radio just to lose the filter after one minute and developing into a mysterious instrumental track with a theremin like synth. The track slowly fades into a creepy noise synth experimental tune. This album prove that this band has so much to tell and we need that so badly...
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Artist: BODYCODE
Title: Immune
Format: CD
Label: Spectral Sound
Rated: *****
Three years after Bodycode's debut album "The conservation of electric charge" Spectral Sound/Ghostly is releasing Alan Abrahams' second release under this moniker titled IMMUNE. Growing up in South Africa and now living in Lisbon, Alan into his music always showed a rhythm sensibility that allowed him to mix successfully electronic/acoustic sounds, tiny noises and melodies. His music is a multi-layered structure of sounds that take inspiration by dubstep, minimal, house and techno. The nine tracks of the album play joyful with the song structure without being too pop or too dance oriented. Since the first seconds of the album you'll be aware that something different is going on: "Meaning and memory" opening mix harp, distorted synth bass and retro drum machine sounds just to blast off with its syncopated rhythms with Roland TB-303 inserts. Each track is a constant growing where genres are mixed with ease. "Hyperlight" house/dubstep mix are followed by the mix of Miami house and Detroit techno atmospheres of "I'll hold your hand". Even when the track seems to be stuck into a loop, Bodycode is able to surprise you. At this purpose, check "Imitation lover": it starts like an house techno obsessive instrumental just to insert cool vocals with melodies that drill your head. Each listening will be a new surprise. Check it here: http://ghostly.com/releases/immune
Artist: The Dark Clan
Title: Perspectives
Format: CD
Rated: *****
The Dark Clan hails from Milwaukee Wisconsin and just rocked out last weekend in Chicago at the Underground lounge. If you get a chance to see this band live you won't be disappointed. They all dress in white and sing about things that go bump in the night. The name of the album is called " Perspectives " We open with a Gothy tale of being Goth called " Vampires Dance " which rocks hard and is a instant club danse floor track. Lore and mockery about being Goth and being in your corset and your melacholic world, this track screams the " G" world all too well. Goth and vampirism runs deep like the veins that carry the blood they crave for. Next is track two, " New London " which is a track about the memories of London and all it's glory and elegance it hauntingly brought to the table. Moving through this album we come to a unique track called " Lestat in Cuba." This track stuck in my mind and in my heart and called out to me as well as the crowd. Dancing in darkness and rememberance of the nite thats calls so sweetly to us now and then. A Gothic Tango in Cuba, clever and all knowing and making this truely a most unique masterpiece and definately a song not to forget but to cherish. One of the best wits about this is the refrain they sing, "it's time to die." Dark, brooding and to the letter. This band are the vampires that dress in white and can make it make sense and show us all up. Another track that sticks our to us is track 11, " Vampires Sex Funk." The vampire disco song that grooves and draws you in like a vampires beck and call and really got me dancing in my seat and wanting more. All and all this new album has great promise for many of it's tracks to hit the charts. This band does not miss a trick and leaves you with treats. Do you dare to dive in and sink your teeth into it.? ~ 4 stars
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Artist: GIANNI GREGORY FORNET
Title: guitare solo
Format: CD
Label: Amor Fati (@)
Rated: *****
This one is a strange cd if considered in the global economy of releases on Amor Fati, infact this’ a solo guitar recording with some soft singing, but that’s not exactly jazz or something so closely related as you can guess. That’s not to be taken for bad, nay it feeds my great respect for the label which despite a clear physiognomy is not necessarily cornered into a genre. As I’ve said this’a solo guitar cd as the title itself says, it betrays some jazz, folk, traditional music, experimental music influences, in general it’s a really melodic work and the vocals make it even more listenable, here and there it reminded me of Ex when they were absorbed in their rock-balcanic era or I’d better say Kelekta Red if they were reduced to one instrument, we can also add this cd is not that far from the most traditional tracks recorded by Marc Ribot during his "book of heads" era. Some melodies somehow keep returning in a couple of episodes but don’t worry you experimentalists readers of chaindlk, you have a long impro-drone track titled "Os" where mr. Fornet works on different solutions while playing with some self-generated looped-drones. I’ve also had the itch to mention Frisell and you have his spores scattered in the style of this French guitarist, but Fornet is way more rough (not necessarily in a bad way) and Frisell is really crystalline with his guitar touch, but the post-folk-post-blue-grass-post-jazz influence is there, you can bet it. There’s no doubt this probably the most accessible relase I’ve heard on this label, not necessarily the best and sure not my favorite, but it’s one of those relases I’m sure many guitarists, plus melodic, post-rockers may dig.

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Artist: GIANNI LENOCI, CARLOS ZINGARO, MARCELLO MAGLIOCCHI
Title: serendipity
Format: CD
Label: Amirani (@)
Rated: *****
Ok, it took me a while to review this cd and I’ve an explanation for it, I’ve been so delighted by the very first listening I tried to calm down a bit to understand if it was a great album or just a passing infatuation (and it still had to pass the test of the following listenings). After several listenings I’ve no doubt, this’ not just one of the best releases I’ve heard on Amiran,i but this’ probably one of the best improvisational releases I’ve heard in a long time. This gem features Marcello Magliocchi on percussions, legend Carlos Zingaro on violin and Gianni Lenoci on piano, the recording is great and the trio is driven by pure inspiration and its constantly flirting with dramatic atmospheres. I imagine you may have heard sentences like these many times but if you think that having a improvisational-identity, a sound and being varied at the same time is not that great deal: tell me what should we look for in a recording like this!?. As you happen with many works like that the equipe-work makes it really special, but beside the team-playing and the incredibile numeber of complementary solutions they manage to create in every episode, the three distinc identity of the players turned it into a real jewel. Free-contemporary (vaguely-post-jazz) impro-music where our three stooges play collectively but also singularly waiting in order to leave their soloist role to somebody else, every member adopts several techniques and changes role for the sake of the global result and what a great result!. Carlos Zingaro is great, but Lenoci’s touch and solutions on and inside the body of the piano are more than inspired, to that you’ve to add Magliocchi is one of the most patient and non-intrusive percussionists ever heard on a recording like this. While playing with abstraction and sounding contemporary classical they fight each other, here they follow this high registers there, they go for loudness then they leave the scene to some suspended scales. While painting some really interiorized portraits and keeping their good eye open on a sort of melody, they also work with instrumental dialogues but leaving those scholastic-solutions back home and above all they never forget their performance/recording/tracklist has a global meaning and it’s not a collection of scattered dialogues. This’ not exactly easy, wishy-washy impro-music, but if you’re down with improvisational trios and music in general, this cd shows with a piano, a violin and a set of percussions three talented musicians can still make you taste the magic of instant-compositions.

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