Music Reviews



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Artist: Attacks The Darkness (@)
Title: I Am The Gatekeeper
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Label: self-released
Distributor: iTunes, Napster, etc...
Rated: *****
This is a California-based Electronica/Experimental solo-project by David Inden, who releases under his moniker ATTACKS THE DARKNESS his first full-length album after his predecessor EP entitled "Six Times Seven". David’s music isn’t that sort of an easy-listening Electronica with a calm attitude, it rather integrates multiple fragments out of quite different music styles and it tends to mix this fragments in an at times obscure manner. It is definitely rhythmic oriented, but a quite unusual sonic experience which needs some more spins to find an assessable entrance for the listener. Electronica, Experimental, Ambient and/or Electro/Industrial styles can all be discovered here, but in a quite unusual style. Advantageous is the fact that David don’t likes to explore a one-dimensional path of music, and as the info sheet to this album explains it wisely, "ATTACKS THE DARKNESS attempts to map the ever expanding soundscape that is on repeat in his (David’s) brain." Therefore it is hard to name some favorites, but the gloomy Dark Ambient-tune with the delicious title "There Is A Body In My Freezer And I Don’t Have Any Answers" gets a vote from me. Music for some open-minded Electronica music fans, in some parts compatible with some acts signed Tympanik Audio and/or Hymen. Available via several known online downloading retailers like iTunes, Amazon.com, Napster, etc...
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Artist: Kenji Siratori (@)
Title: Soul Of The War Dead
Format: CD
Label: SkullLine (@)
Distributor: SkullLine
Rated: *****
Another new album for this Japanese Cyber-Ambient/Industrial artist, who has not only continued with own new recordings, also some more guest appearances on several releases out of the Electro and Industrial genres have been arranged. "Soul Of The War Dead" consists out of 3 different music parts which combine long delayed and reverberated Ambient drones in a quite static, but clean Electronica outfit. Generally this new album doesn’t pick the abrasive kind of the predecessor "Sickness For The 21st Century", it rather turns more into the realm of his first release on SkullLine, "Death Creature". His trademark, the integrated non-stopping strange sounding voice samples are featured as well and leave at times the wish to a more clear performance and message. But dealing thematically with the tragic atomic bomb drop over Hiroshima, the mood of this album doesn’t leaves any friendlier impression. An album quite along KENJI’s alley. The strict limitation of only 33 exemplars packed in a metal movie can saves the special status for this release too.
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Artist: Grabstein (@)
Title: Anne Frank
Format: CD
Label: SkullLine (@)
Distributor: SkullLine
Rated: *****
Second album-release for the Switzerland-based Military/Industrial-act GRABSTEIN, which this time seems to be a kind of a conceptual release. The main theme deals with the female Anne Frank and the Nazi-German invasion of the Netherlands during WWII. Military-inspired stuff quiet often documented with some historic voice and war samples, but with GRABSTEIN often accomplished with some further music styles. Enjoyable Neo-Classic influence like a top-notch piano performance like on "Nowhere To Hide", but also some ominous sounding Dark Ambient-like sound environments as offered with "Deportation" or "Death". GRABSTEIN often declares not to follow or to defend any politically system and I believe in this, since the chosen samples seriously don’t bring on a drama – the historic content is recognizable. Rather more worth to mention is the out-of-any-question higher artistic and musically valuable content presented through the Neo-Classic arrangement. No stuff of course if you feel ashamed if someone feels the need to deal with some past atrocities, but... wouldn’t it time to grow and to get some more distance which especially counts for the older generation? No one should forget and everyone shall be warned – this album fulfills this with some real historic content.
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Artist: EAST ISLAND
Title: Near Depth
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Label: Eevonext (@)
Rated: *****
Active since the mid 90s with the moniker of East Island the brothers Peter & Tonie van der Loon created their blend of lush techno with Detroit influences taking inspiration from the isolation of the Dutch eastern farmlands. NEAR DEPTH E.P. contains tracks that they produced on late 90s which were still unreleased. "Atomile", "Element X", "Follow Your Star" and "Perfect Lover" are melodic instrumental techno tracks (only "Follow your stars" and "Perfect Lover" have some vocal samples) with ambient approach. Long synth pads duet with acid bass lines and reverbered drum machine sounds. The brothers are able to create a good mixture that sounds fresh and with a bit of mystery and each track has a different ambience which goes from the Detroit techno acid of the opening "Atomile" (also presented remixed by Estroe, who kept the original structure but tweaking a little on the sound palette) to the semi slow ambient dub of the closing "Perfect Lover". This is a Nice E.P. and if you love unconventional techno music you should check it.
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Artist: DER BLAUE REITER
Title: Silencis
Format: CD
Label: Caustic Records (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Named after a group of Munich artists active during the first decades of 20th century (some of them were Vasilij Kandinskij, Franz Marc, August Macke, Alexej von Jawlensky and Marianne von Werefkin), Der Blaue Reiter (meaning "the blue knight") are releasing for Caustic Records their second full length album titled SILENCIS. The Spanish duo formed by Lady Nott and Sathorys Elenorth (active also with Narsilion) with this new album are presenting twelve new tracks divided into four different chapters titled respectively: "En sentir la tristor al cor", "Enfosquits els ulls de la mort", "Ordre i caos" and "Perdicio... l'espurna d'un trist record". Mixing quotes from classical interludes by Henry Purcell, Chopin and Antonio Vivaldi with martial atmospheres/rhythms, Der Blaue Reiter succeed into painting a personal vision of the decay of the world. They pass from energetic tracks with snare drums and vocals ("Eyes of the lost") to neo-classical/dark ambient suites like the following "Death and decadence". Rich orchestrations and classical minimalism (with some industrial ambient ambience) duet with ease creating a multifaceted canvas where the duo express their melancholy and their sadness. Songs, suites, industrial influences, everything is good to obtain an atmosphere of dreamy suspension where happiness is an old dusty memory.
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