Music Reviews



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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Great Summer Games Stuff: A Tribute to Human Rights
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Great Stuff (@)
Rated: *****

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Summer 2008. The Olympic Games are in Beijing, China. To revive the Olympic ideals of International friendship and peace, Great Stuff decided to produce this double CD where artists from all over the world are interpreting or reinventing their own national anthem. An exception is the opening track by the Austrian duo Makossa & Megablast who decided to go for Tibet (instead of their home country) mixing their great rhythms with a mantra spoken by Konchok Yoenten. This track remember to us all that what's going on in Tibet doesn't incarnate the Olympic spirit. The double album contains 24 bands/anthems that mix folk sounds/melodies (see the Syria anthem presented by Amir or the samples of the German anthem reworked by Swen Weber), techno rhythms and minimal hypnotic structures. Most of the CDs are sounding like minimal techno except for Tomcraft's "Bavaria" anthem that has a bit of electro, the Tibet one and also Atomic Hooligan's "England" which is a good dancey electro instrumental tune while "New Zealand" by Greg Churchill is a nice acid house/electro/tribal song, Tommy Trash's "Australia" is a particular electro retro instrumental and "Cuba" by Lutzenkirchen mix electro melodies and techno sound with a punk attitude. Sometimes the listening session has turned into a fluctuating dreamy experience but the overall compilation isn't only for the hard core fans of the genre.
Here's the tracklisting:
CD 1:
01. Makossa & Megablast ft. Kuchok Yoenten - Tibet
02. Amir - Syria
03. Namito - Iran
04. Butch - Turkey
05. Danilo Vigorito - Italy
06. Etienne De Crecy - France
07. Swen Weber - Germany
08. David Amo & Julio Navas - Spain
09. Tomcraft - Bavaria
10. Aldrin & Akien - Singapur
11. Fergie - Ireland
12. Ramon Tapia - Belgium

CD 2:
01. Tokyo Black Star - Japan
02. Rui Da Silva - Portugal
03. Markus Mehta - India
04. Gusgus - Iceland
05. Mihalis Safras - Greece
06. Steve Angello pres Who`s Who? - Sweden
07. OK Corral - Romania
08. Atomic Hooligan - England
09. Greg Churchill - New Zealand
10. Tommy Trash - Australia
11. Lucca - Czech Republic
12. Luetzenkirchen - Cuba
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Artist: BIT PIXEL
Title: The All Clear
Format: CD
Label: A-Frame Media (@)
Rated: *****
THE ALL CLEAR is the first release by Bit Pixel but his story started twenty years ago when he tried to get his music released with no success. It's thanks to Wayne at Lucky Pierre (he's the one who's co-producing this CD-r) that we have the chance to listen to Bit Pixel music, because he discovered at his mum's house some tapes he got that were coming from what it was believed to be a bin outside Mute Records. It took to Wayne some time before he was able to track down Bit Pixel. He was working in a biscuit factory when Wayne asked him to record some tracks and at this purpose he bought him a new laptop and some new software. It took some time but we finally have the chance to listen to what could have been. THE ALL CLEAR is a good synthpop album with an 80's flavor but it isn't too much retro as well as it isn't sounding like cheesy pop. To me Bit Pixel music is comparable to what A Flock Of Seagulls produced: good songs with nice melodies, a bit of melancholy, some slow ballads and bouncing songs. Of the lot I really liked the darker tracks "Trigger happy" and "To the shelter" or the mid tempo "Summer tide". Check some of them at the Bit Pixel website.
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Artist: BOBBY SOUL et LES GASTONES (@)
Title: 73% Phunk
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Inmusica
Rated: *****
Here we go with Genova's own godfather of funk, we've been talking about him when reviewing Audiodevice, since he was featured as a singer. His own project with Les Gastones is funk to the bone as you can easily guess from the records' title, but in the drink you're gonna taste a little bit of acid jazz, a slice of italian pop flavor and a spruce of soul. Funky easy listening that reclaims the airwaves both when following a dance route and when it surrenders to soft heartbreaking tunes. Classic fm-funk/fm soul style, thus if you're looking for some weird "white-funk extravaganza" you'd better leave your hopes, just some hip-hop incursions but I don't think it will surprise anybody since it's a natural marriage. After many listenings I think this guys really kick ass above all when going for the slowest cuts, but I can imagine when playing live the fast tunes are a sure shot for a crowd who's there to dance till death. I dunno if you know Enzo Avitabile but mr. Soul reminds me so much of him and I think it's a great comparison since Avitabile is one of the few artists mixing italian music, traditional ethnic reminiscences and afro-american influences and giving it all credibility. For example give a listen to "sSull'onda buona", or "Dammi un brivido" and tell me if this not the typical mid summer chart climber!?, here you have some other potential hits, but this one is my first candidate for the heavy rotation if you're into the style. Usually that's not exactly my cup of tea, above all for the fact many italian pop productions get suffocated by a bunch of plastic like sounds, but this could be a good follow up to bands such as Dirotta su Cuba with the considerable difference this time the singer is not a lady but a gentleman. Hard to say if it gets the popularity it demands, but I've no doubt about the fact it's a good product. For what concerns the product itself, here you have a double cd with some live tracks and some videos to make it all even more appetitive. Don't worry, I've not mentioned intentionally James Brown, Steve Wonder, Isac Heyes, Barry White or Marvin Gaye, but this double cd pays such a tribute to these black masters you hardly will distinguish the different influences. A soulful, danceable artifact that could also make it in the heart of those who loved early Jamiroquay and Us3, just more "traditional" and much more poppy.
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Artist: BLEIBURG (@)
Title: Open Wound
Format: CD
Label: The Eastern Front (@)
Rated: *****
Recorded live in Kassel on the 23rd of July 2007, OPEN WOUND contains thirteen tracks in the classic Bleiburg style. Always in balance between industrial, bouncing e.b.m., a bit of martial and dark ambient dub this Bleiburg live recording is a nice live concert which give to the listener a good idea of the band's sound. Presenting instrumental songs as well as sung pumping industrial e.b.m. ones (and at this purpose Steve Rukavina has been helped on vocals and synth by E.W. Schroeder a.k.a. MDMA) the album succeeds into keeping the audience interest always alive and this is a good thing. The album collects Bleiburg well know songs such as "Gulag Good-bye", "Na Rad!", "Nezdrava Tvorba" or "Good evening, Zagreb" and for this reason it could be a good starting point for whom who don't know them. For the fans of the project there's also available a DVD-r (in a limited run of 300 copies, like the Cd-r) with the complete recording of the concert (with the extra track "Wohin Wir Gehoren") which capture well the atmosphere of that night with a good audio recording (the same mixer recording of the CD-r) and a good quality image.
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: IFS5 Lenny Dee presents COLD FUSION
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Industrial Strength Records (@)
Distributor: Soundbase
Rated: *****
This DCD collection got compiled by the international renowned DJ Lenny Dee and released on his very own Industrial Strength Records, the first Hardcore Techno label active since 1991. "Cold Fusion" comes out in beautiful digi-pack and offers a cross-section of multiple Techno-Hardcore and Gabber tracks to prove, that the musically boundaries to the too often praised EBM/Industrial/Powernoise genre is floating. With acts like TERRORFAKT, here presented with 2 appearances ("Achtung" – CERVELLO ELLETRONICO Remix and "Headcase" – Floppy Disk Remix), this prove is an easy game. Some more appearances can convince in a comparable style, THE SPEED FREAK, the ultra-speedy, pseudo-aggressive and with Metal-guitars supported MOSHPIT, the saturated CUT A KAOS or KONEY. Of course this music has to be consumed louder as hell and won’t let you chill out, it is stuff to storm the dancefloors for some wild Pogo action. This reminds a lot on the successful but too repetitive "Terrordome" compilation series, even if some of the here featured pieces have a somewhat more harsh and distorted outfit. No stuff at all to sink in and to listen to in an armchair, but a new pounding torture for the dedicated fan of the genre. To me consumable in small dozes, but as a whole a bit too strenuous.

Track listing:

CD 1:

01. LENNY DEE - EXTREME MASH (the intro)
02. DJ EARTHQUAKE - STEP INTO THE PIT
03. THE EMPERATOR & CHROMATIC - MENTAL FEAR
04. FIEND & BROKEN RULES - SHARPER IMAGE
05. CUT A KAOS - DEDICATED TO...
06. TERRORFACT - ACHTUNG (Cervello Elettronico remix)
07. STAN GREWZELL ELECDAS GRAUEN
08. TERRORFACT - HEADCASE (FLOPPY DISC REMIX)
09. KONEY UNREGISTERED
10. DAISY & STORMTROOPER - MINDWALKERS
11. MOLECULEZ - LEGALLY INSANE
12. FORSAKEN IS DEAD & CIK - WHERE U AT
13. TYMON - PASSING BY
14. MANGA CORPS - THE HUNTER
15. BROKEN RULES - NORMAL OPERATION
16. GERMAN RHYTHM DISASTER - THE END

CD 2:

01. THE SPEED FREAK - GIVE ME A CALL
02. LIFE:::RUNS:::RED MEETS TYMON - DISTORTURE
03. TYMON - GUCCI
04. STORMTROOPER - TODESVOGEL
05. OPHIDIAN & TIEUM - NOTHING I CAN’T HANDLE
06. LENNY DEE - THE DREAMER (promo remix)
07. DELTA 9 - NO MORE REGRETS (inyoung & static remix)
08. FIEND & BROKEN RULES vs LENNY DEE - BREAK YA HEAD
09. TIEUM & LENNY DEE - I DON’T LIKE YOU (neophyte & evil activities remix)
10. PARTYRAISER & THE NEGOTIATOR- NO NEGOTIATIONS
11. JAPPO & LANCINHOUSE- EXLXAXL (NEOPHYTE & EVIL ACTIVITIES REMIX)
12. DJ SKINHEAD - THE ULTIMATE CUMSHOT
13. AKIRA - RIPPIN FXXKIN STRENGTH
14. ISR CREW - SPECIAL MESSAGE FOR LENNY
15. MOSHPIT - EYESORE
16. RIFF GLITCHARD - INSTANT MASH
17. MOSHPIT - WE KILLED JAH

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