Music Reviews



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Artist: DETUNE-X
Title: Purevil
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Born as a solo :Bahntier// side project, Detune-X with this new PUREVIL see the project become a duo thanks to Eric Van Wonterghem (Sonar, Monolith, Insekt). The twelve tracks of the album sound like a never ending party of industrial hypnotic sounds. Based mainly on rhythm variations the duo created a thick soundtrack like experience, blending rhythm layers, drones and some ambient solutions. Of the lot I preferred the tracks that had also some drones and samples because I like rhythm but when it become the main thing and the album turns into a modern tribal hypnotic experience I tend to lost my concentration but if you are into these sounds and you are picky about sound production, this could be the right one for you.
Oct 05 2007
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Artist: SOUNDGAZER (@)
Title: Screen Feel
Format: CD
Label: Pose 9 Entertainment
Rated: *****
Born from the ashes of Cysto, Soundgazer is the new project of Voytek Iwasiuk. The album SCREEN FEEL is his last production as a solo act because Soundgazer are now three people. Comparing Soundgazer to Cysto is evident that Voytek improved his skills into sound production and songwriting as the new project brings to the audience nine new e.b.m. tracks (tracks from 10 to 13 where included into Cysto's old CD) which are able to blend melody and rhythm in a convincing way ("Find" is a good example with that kind of stop and go moments where the song slows down a little just to start again its run). The only weak element left is his voice. If at first his angry but not distorted vocals can be seen as a distinctive element, after a couple of tracks it starts to be seen as the only thing that doesn't change into Soundgazer's sound. This vanishes a little the efforts he did into the creation of a nice musical background. If he would try to vary the vocals or recruit a new singer, the songs would gain a lot...
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Artist: KURSK (@)
Title: the truth in the head
Format: DVD
Label: Amirani (@)
Rated: *****
Wow, I think I deserve some respect here since before writing the final review of this dvd I've been watching it at least three or four times which in my book means I've given it lot's off attention!. The fact is the work and the concept behind it is to say it all: majestic, I dunno if you remember the whole tragedy of the russian sailors left choking in the dept of the sea but I've seen a couple of documentaries on it and I remember quite well the whole disaster. The other reason why it took me so much to digest the dvd is that not only the project is ambitious, but the final result is equally complex, infact the dvd featues some extras where Mimmo explanes how they’ve approached this work. To prevent you from thinking this’ gonna bore you to death, I’ve to say according to my personal taste that's one of the most interesting releases on Amirani. While most of the original sources for the visual part are well assembled I'm not completely convinced about all the effects used in the process of elaboration of the images, but that doesn't mean it won’t leave you dry. Though the primary "voices" involved in the realization of this soundtrack are soprano sax and trombone, the electronic insertions are really well calibrated and help dying neutrally every act of what sometimes has the feature of a theatrical play (a drama indeed). There’s something beautifully old fashioned in the music played for the score and surprise, surprise: differently from what one may expect it’s not sad or dark, but that’s also what I find it’s really personal of this work. With the exception of the electronic parts of the record, which usually are non intrusive and discrete, our "horn" duo ranges from abstract melodies to barely classical movements eluding the jazz background of Contini and Mimmo. Funny cause what initially could be a dangerous choice reveals to be the most unconventional decision and at the end of the dvd I’ve happened to think that they’ve given much more power to the images and to the story plot. The music has its autonomous life even when separated by its soundtrack essence and that’s good, by the way the majority of the "movements" are subsequential thus it’s quite different from those soundtrack where you have a recurring theme or songs that can be isolated from the whole musical context. Good work and above all music wise an enchanting release.
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Artist: LUCA FORMENTINI (@)
Title: Tacet
Format: CD
Label: Extreme (@)
Rated: *****
After Australians, Americans and Japanese, Italians are doing their best to increase their ethnic weight between the ranks of Extreme records and Luca Formentini follows Claudio Parodi, by the way even if both those country fellows can be ideally filed under "drone" music, the nature and the final result of the two works are quite far one from each other". Formentini has an candid old school ambient/visionary approach that I’m sure many of you (me included) will appreciate. While remembering you "old school" doesn’t imply always: "surpassed", Formentini’s refined effort will kill those who loved the most inspired Eno, David Torn (minus some of his old fashioned fusion reminiscences), the most sober Laswell and many beautiful documentary soundtracks you may have (or have not) heard once in your life. I’m tented to say this could be a sophisticated atmospherical release with a ECM, Axiom cut (no, it’s nit dub). Don’t worry, I know for many of you ECM (and Axiom) has become just a synonym for "chic music for pretentious bourgeois intellectual wonnabes", but I’ve to admit myself they still put out interesting records every now and then. For what it’s worth Luca has some celebrities featured on this cd: Markus Stokhausen (son of such a father but great musician himself!), Sylvian’s own Steve Jensen that surely have enriched what already was an intense release just to name the most famous. By some means I wish I’ve been able to express this guitar driven songs are in some way close to "classic ambient" but scout’s honour: if that’s the so called classicism is more than welcome! The fact is Formentini has simply exploited a pre-existing "language" but he manages to be both lyrically evocative and touchy thar makes the difference. "Tacet" is warm and has the undoubtful quality to make you feel relaxed both when the mood of the track is sad and when we have something close to the softest/diluted evolution of Miles Davis (Nordic jazz anybody?). While many of his contemporaries fall while looking for the coolest sound, Formentini is more absorbed in the search for interiority and you can hear it. I know I may sound dumb for writing this but after many listening I couldn’t but think how Wenders’ "Until the end of the world" wouldn’t have been such a bore with a soundtrack like that. Nothing can better describe "Tacet" but relaxing.


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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: SCHLAGSTROM "Krrrbrrrtztzkrrr 02"
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Rusblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Second chapter of the SCHLAGSTROM saga and released for the fourth edition of the festival, this new double compilation shows all the highs and lows of nowadays industrial noise scene. If most of the tracks are good at creating a rhythmic web of sound where your senses are tested by torrents of distorted noises and are able to change the atmosphere in a moment being able to catch your attention (the best of the lot are Empusae, Sonar, Insekt, P.A.L., Muckrackers, Hybrids, "Bahntier and Desdemona), most of the remaining ones tend to stuck their sound into a pure "Sturm und Drang" style where the nihilistic approach wins on the creativity. This approach brings you tracks based on the repetition of few sounds distorted as much as possible which personally don't convince me that much. Fortunately the highs are many and most of the tracks are exclusive to this release, so if you are a lover of the genre there are many interesting points to check...
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