Music Reviews



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Artist: PSYCHEDELIC DESERT (@)
Title: Keshiki
Format: CD
Label: Pharmafabrik (@)
Rated: *****
Japanese project Psychedelic Desert's first album is titled KESHIKI and it has been released by the Italian label Pharmafabrik. The CD contains two minimal and long suites which seem to pay their tribute to cosmic music and which are true to the project's name because of the ambience created. The tracks succeed into creating a layer of fluctuating synth like sounds which stimulate the brainwaves of the listener. The only weak point I'd like to underline is that the tracks are based on similar sounds and being about 40 minutes long each one, they could made the listener loose his attention if not deeply involved into the lysergic sounds. The second half of the second track changes its sound a little bit thanks to some feedback and to what to my ears seems to be a treated guitar.
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anymore
Artist: REPTILJAN
Title: Archaeodermophagia
Format: CD
Label: Some Place Else (@)
Rated: *****
Printed into a limited edition of 104 CD-Rs and having a special handmade package (there are also some blond hair included) ARCHAEODERMOPHAGIA is the new work of Reptiljan, one of the Niko Skorpio's musical projects. Being described as spontaneous compositions for bass guitar, contact microphones, fm radio and delay and distortion pedals, the CD contains seven tracks where it really hard to recognize what is what. The tracks don't seem to have a sort of structure and the main thing you'll be aware of is the phase of the stream of sound. The phases are spanning to light feedback with background noises to hard distorted mayhem where it is better you won't have your headphones on. There's also tracks which follow a different scheme, like "Metsanpeittoon" where the classic music coming from a radio channel is "infected" with noises little by little just to be sampled and treated on loops. Also on the following tracks there are traces of a certain musicality but they are rapidly overwhelmed by noise and chaos. I appreciated the most structured moments where I found some form of "organized chaos" but noise for the sake of it isn't my thing...
Aug 12 2007
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Artist: XmH (@)
Title: Time To Play
Format: CD
Rated: *****
Born from an idea of ex Active Disorder's Benjamin Samson and helped live by Pieter Sperling and recently joined also by Charlot Wever, XmH present to the lovers of strong e.b.m. their second release / first album TIME TO PLAY. Containing eleven songs and four remixes the debut album of XmH is a strong e.b.m. danceable album with lotsa energy and pounding rhythms. I know that there are tons of bands that have this kind of sound, so you'd ask what is XmH's peculiarity. Well, first of all Benjamin vocals aren't filtered and he do really shout his lungs out. Second, even if their music doesn't stand out for originality, their tracks are well conceived and you'll would enjoy them if you are searching for an album that would work well on clubs as well on a boring day when you are in need of a energy shot. "Rape your God" already had some kind of success on the alternative Dutch scene and for sure that one is the best of the lot. Also the mixes are doing their job and I appreciated "Global killer" version by Ng-Pro and "Rape your god" revisited by Jesus Complex. You can purchase the album directly from the band for 10 p+p included...
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anymore
Artist: Motor
Title: Unhuman
Format: CD
Label: Novamute
Rated: *****
I had seen these guys opening for Nitzer Ebb in NYC and was impressed by their teutonic industrial beats, their dark attitude and their brutal electronic sounds. An outburst of energy that bubbles and boils with heat that matches the warmth of their sine- and saw- waveforms, most likely the product of Moogs and other analog-synths. It is hard to describe a sound so smooth and yet so raw: chest-pounding and hard-hitting like Dive, splintery and raw around the edges like Throbbing Gristle, classically warm and electronic like Kraftwerk, ground-stomping and bowel-movement inducing like any real good hard-techno DJ set... Motor just runs like a perfectly oiled and unstoppable machine chipping away at your barriers and blocks to penetrate your enthusiasm and break your hearing, song after song. The whole thing is pretty much in 4/4 with simple and minimalistic beats made of huge sub-kicks on 1 and 3 and sharp, metallic, saturated snare hits on 2 and 4. This is mostly an instrumental album, however the band members do occasionally throw in some vocals, and when they do they, start reminding me of Laibach for some reason.
"Unhuman" is the follow up to their well received "Klunk" and to that you must add remixes for Depeche Mode, Marilyn Manson and Throbbing Gristle, as well as their side project four-piece band X-Lover, so the guys have been pretty active and are most likely going to stay that way.
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anymore
Artist: The Secret Meeting (@)
Title: Ultrashiver
Format: CD
Label: Noiseplus Music
Rated: *****
The Secret Meeting is a long-distance collaboration project between kaRIN & Statik of Collide and Dean Garcia of Curve and, as one would expect, the result is nothing short of outstanding: no surprise if you consider the skills and the sum of experiences of these three individuals (who collaborated with Skinny Puppy, Tool, Prince, Cohen, Eurythmics, Jagger, O'Connor etc).
If you love Collide and Curve you must of course check this out (we know you'll love it), but for those of you who don't know the two bands, imagine an alternative electronic band that would probably do fine on mainstream radio but has more to offer than most of what mainstream radio plays. The quality of The Secret Meeting's music is above the ordinary and you'll hear that in the production and the arrangements. Darkwave at heart but reaching upwards towards more solar and ethereal electronica heights, "Ultrashiver" features ten tracks of beautiful songwriting completed by gorgeous ethereal female vocals. Echoes of Conjure One/Delerium, Lycia, Massive Attack, Recoil, Balligomingo, darkwave bands such as Black Tape for a Blue Girl, female-fronted rock bands like Evanescence or Lacuna Coil (but not nearly as guitar-heavy), the most electronic of Madonna's records, Nine Inch Nails, Blue Man Group (I could swear I recognized a sample). The list could go on and is by no means meant to be definitive. The sound of this particular band draws from so many different areas and yet is so consolidated and original that it is able to create an all new character and is definitely worthy of your time and attention. Check it out.
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