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Artist: FEAR OF DOLLS (@)
Title: Lullabies For Aborted Children
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
LULLABIES FOR ABORTED CHILDREN is the latest and maybe last Fear Of Dolls' album and I must say that it is a though one. If while listening to the old EPs you had a sense of desperation, with this one desperation turned into nihilism: check the opening "Can you hear the sickness?" and you'll understand what I mean. Try to imagine a choir of pigs (do you remember the Sickness Of Snakes' track recorded that way?) mixed with fallen angels vocals and you'll have that track. "Screaming inside her" opens with an applause and that one starts the "freak show". Originally the track was contained into the "Bless this broken body" EP (as well as the following "She was laughing") but it has been re-recorded. The effect of listening to forty five minutes of Fear Of Dolls music all in a row is positively devastating and it is like listening to a Codeine record played by the Birthday Party. I suggest you to avoid the listening if you are depressed or stressed. I'm not joking: the first time I listened to it I had to stop at track three. For this reason I'm reviewing it with a certain delay. I had to wait for a positive time as this summer I had my moving and the death of my father in law and listening to LULLABIES FOR ABORTED CHILDREN wasn't helping at all. Try it!
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Artist: DISKONNEKTED (@)
Title: Neon Night
Format: CD
Label: Alfa Matrix (@)
Distributor: Soulfood
Rated: *****
Finally Jan Dewulf has found a new label home with Alfa Matrix for his DISKONNEKTED project after the unexpected demise of the Dying Culture label. I must admit that I haven’t heard his predecessor "Jesus Raves" and also not the previous released EP "After Einstein". But the name Jan Dewulf is known for me with his first band MILDREDA, a Belgium Dark Electro act which was active up to 1998/1999 and could enter several comps like "Even Dogs in the Wild" or the first two chapters of the "Voltage" comp series. DISKONNEKTED in contrary has not too much to do with MILDREDA, music styles and tastes have changed within the years. The music of Jan still remains somehow EBM/Electro infiltrated with some Synth-/Futurepop attitudes, but in all it is very refreshing and with some edge. Jan combines his kind of Electro with some rhythm patterns taken out of different Dance Music styles like Progressive Tekkno, Break Beat or Trance. I see and hear a strong effort to break out from a musical death valley in which this genre drowns. Think about the music of the latest PAIL or ABSCESS, mix it with HAUJOBB’s rhythm talent and you maybe have an idea how this act can be compared. "Fact and Theory" is one of the strongest opening instrumental pieces I have heard for a long time. "Broken" and "After Einstein" will lead the Futurepop audience to the dancefloors, while "Religion" (featuring guest vocals by Johan Van Roy of SUICIDE COMMANDO and "Danger" are dedicated to satisfy the friend of harder Electro/Industrial music. This album has a lot of more pearls to discover and it is done by a musician who has learned his lessons well. EBM/Electro with ideas and it avoids to follow repetitive hypes – how can you ask for more? Check out the Alfa Matrix website and look for special deals, because this CD is also available as a limited DCD edition, which features the conceptual bonus CD "Hangover". Get it!
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Artist: CYCLOTRON (@)
Title: Type Zero Civilization
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
Cyclotron's TYPE ZERO CIVILIZATION is a really good album which since the first track convinced me. You know as a fan of early Scorn and Godflesh I immediately appreciated the band's mix of technologic metal and electronic industrialism. On some tracks like the six minutes long "The ministry" there's also space for a space rock intermezzo, just to start again the hammering made of samples, electronic drum machine and a distorted guitar. Melody is also a thing that the duo is aware of and the tracks mix very well industrial ambience (thanks to synth pads and to samples) with energetic riffs. The nine tracks of the CD project you toward apocalyptic scenarios and when Craig doesn't sing Cyclotron's music could be good for modern b-movies. TYPE ZERO CIVILIZATION is the band's third album, I hadn't the occasion to listen to the other ones but I assure you that this one is worth the listening!
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Artist: THE LAST DANCE (@)
Title: ONCE BEAUTIFUL
Format: CD
Label: dancing-ferret (@)
Rated: *****
From 1995’s debut EP to the new full-length album, The Last Dance has shown
to maintain the integrity of their sound, but in the meantime to search new ways, sometime taking some risks, for update their music. Combining different styles this veteran act here presents an anthemic dark-pop-dance album along the same lines as labelmates THE CRUXSHADOWS. They have always incoprporated elements of electronics into their dark wave sound to give it a unique and interesting twist to their music, including
dramatic background choruses which wrap around the lead deep vocals, and chiming guitars. The album includes the song Wish Me Closer’, featuring guest vocals by Tina Root - SWITCHBLADE SYMPHONY.Sure this album is superior in both production as well as musical arrangements to the previous works that also were great albums.Together with Second Skin, the best american goth sound.
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Artist: DECODED FEEDBACK (@)
Title: Combustion
Format: CD
Label: Out Of Line (@)
Distributor: SPV
Rated: *****
It was round about 1990 when this Italian-/Canadian duo started to enter the acceptance and the success on all dancefloors of the dark clubs with their EBM/Electro sound, to that times inspired by classic EBM hymns. Several years later, with changes in styles and musical preferences, with the release of their 5th real studio album "Combustion" this band is back to kick some serious asses. While their musical highlight in their long-time history is still their classic "Mechanical Horizon", this new "Combustion" remarks again a development in their music especially since the mentioned one. Their music is more heavier and aggressive, the sounds are no longer that clean and polished like before. Add to this some more experimental sounds, rhythms and some heavy guitar riffs. This evolution we could already recognize on their last album "Shockwave" and it gets here its perfection. I should admit that I had at first some problems to accept their new kind, but after a few try-outs the magic of this stuff gets me. Excellent examples for the still rich Dark Electro content are in here with "Monument", "Supernova" or the inimitable "Time to Time". Also worth to check out is definitively the cover version of MENTALLO & THE FIXER’s classic "Sacrilege". While someone still needs to explain me the need that an Industrial band covers an Industrial band, I need to push my hat down for this encouraged cover. Totally different to the slow and creepy original, which is still my most favorite MENTALLO track, DECODED FEEDBACK include all important melodic layers and add a danceable rhythm. You find also a re-recording of the classic "Birth Of A Nation", a track which was available on their debut "Overdosing" or the re-edition from the Zoth Ommog label (RIP) "Technophobia". Whatever some people in different online sources may told you, this is again a top-notch release by DECODED FEEDBACK. The musically diversity between aggression and emotion is pretty rich included here. Worth to check out!This release is available and will be published in the USA through Metropolis-Records (www.metropolis-records.com).
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