Music Reviews



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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Negative Impact v0.1
Format: CD
Label: PfF Productions
Rated: *****
The actual impact of this compilation of bush-league Industrial bands, while not exactly "negative," more accurately strikes somewhere between "positive" and "ridiculous." Six of the ten artists on this 18-song sampler come from the Chicago area, all presumably under the Third Wave Collective umbrella, and are or were participants in the Chicago "Dark Gathering" events that this CD commemorates.

There are many plusses: track two, "ROSB" by N.U.T.E. rocks good and hard. Two cuts later, "Retinal Fetish" by Infinity Interrupt has a great, dream-like extended finish that includes creepy whispering and samples that recall Front Line Assembly's "Lethal Compound." A moment of nocturnal pastoral splendor erupts from track 11, CEOXiME's "One:15" -- which is exactly how long it lasts, sadly enough. Soon afterwards there follows a short, sharp, scathing attack on the Bush Administration by Things Outside the Skin ("American Way"), and a passably slick and slippery "World of Morphine" by the Off World Kick Murder Squad. Am22 turn in a sweet and slinky new-wave/old-rave flavored "Secrets," yet their bizarrely comical vocal deliveries on "Greed" and "Virus" only end up as laughable parodies of menace. BioCarbon13's vocals amount to a poor impression of Joy Division's Ian Curtis on "You Shook Me Cold" (no relation or resemblance to Bowie's "She Shook Me Cold"), and remain hilariously limp and unconvincing on the last track, "Shut Up." Jilt and GBX sound suspiciously like they have the same Rob Zombie-sounding singer, but their more rocking songs ("Release" and "Rocket") work well. However, Jilt's programming craftsmanship comes completely unglued in "Night-Blind."

Negative Impact v0.1 is, to say the least, not likely to be the pinnacle of your listening experience, but be advised -- it's got songs worth checking out (about half of these artists are on MySpace). Positive OR negative, the only guarantee is that there's no way to stay neutral upon hearing it.
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Industrial For The Masses Vol. 3
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Out Of Line (@)
Distributor: SPV
Rated: *****
At first we have to realize that the term "Industrial" for this new Out Of Line compilation is meant as a pretty European description for the more US-based terms Powernoise/Powerelectronics. Like the same formula presented on the second edition of this compilation series, this new one features a rhythmically "Toxic Electronic Dancefloor Assault". The term Powernoise and so my understanding of this music is almost sparse filled in here, the Out Of Line act KIEW in collaboration with AMBRASSADOR 23 is the one and only act falling into this kind. The further acts depend between Harsh Electro/EBM, TBM, IDM and some Techno/Trance styles as well. Best pieces I’ve noticed by the Out Of Line acts COMBICHRIST (wow, what a fine kind of vocal fx...), UNTERART (bombastic arranged... nice done!) and DULCE LIQUIDO (I wish to hear Erk’s screams on this straight and fast-forward arranged track – this would be a nice HOCICO tune...), while some licensed acts (BASTEROID, MOTOR) can’t offer any interesting sound or composition and simply bore me like hell. Too weak for a Powernoise comp at all, but I think it’s more dedicated to the usually label program. Out Of Line’s new signing NORTHBORNE (signed to the side-label Masterhit, www.masterhit.com) make here on the second CD their first steps, but also for them I have to say, that the presented stuff doesn’t feature ingredients to fill them under the Powernoise moniker. It is instrumentally arranged Harsh EBM, but this with nice sounds and some good ideas. Two different pieces with "The Pill" and "Trucks" plus three remix works on "The Pill" done by some famous names like UNTERART, Mark Jackson of VNV NATION and DISKONNEKTED offer a good quality. But it’s for sure too early to give a final judgement on this act, they have to prove their talent more on an own full length CD. Further worth to mention is the exellent done artwork which hides these both CD’s under a beautiful digi-pack.

Tracklist:

CD1

1. Combichrist - ElectroHead
2. Basteroid - Rabimmel
3. Unter Art - Der Morgen
4. Dulce Liquido - Serial Killer
5. Chris Liebing/Speedy J - Tunox
6. Motor - Punkture
7. Kiew - Mr. 29 (feat. Ambassador 21)
8. Terence Fixmer - The Calling
9. Ada - I Love Asphalt
10. The Horrorist - Body to body (DJ Stampa mix)
11. Esplendor Geometrico - Moscu Esta Helado (The Hacker)
12. Maelstrom Inc - Afraid Of Us
13. 13th Monkey -Tremor
14. Edelstahl - Drehstrom

CD 2
1. NorthBorne - The Pill (Radio Edith)
2. NorthBorne - Trucks (v. onepointzero)
3. NorthBorne - The Pill (Remix by UnterART)
4. NorthBorne - The Pill (GBH mix by Mark S Jackson)
5. NorthBorne - The Pill (Diskonnekted mix)

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Artist: BOOT-SECTOR-VIRUZ
Title: Anti Matter
Format: CD
Label: Invasion Wreck Chords (@)
Rated: *****
With more than ten years of activity, BooT-SectoR-ViruZ release for Invasion Wreck Chords his latest album titled ANTI MATTER. The CD contains 13 tracks of high rated blend of industrial noise, break beat and ambient with a certain danceable vein (check tracks like "Disco daddy" or the following "Oppression – equal shit"). Each track someway sounds different one from the other because if "Trigger" is more based on rhythm and a melodic line (the female vocal sample is so catchy), "Cruel intentions" is more ambient/break beat, while "Carnivore" is an ambient distorted rhythm freak. Based on samples, rhythms madness and dark atmospheres, the album sounds great. Erik Schleicher did a magnificent job and I suggest you to check this 37th Invasion Wreck Chords release!
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Artist: ESTRANGE (@)
Title: Interim
Format: CD
Label: Life Is Painful Records (@)
Distributor: Infrarot Mailorder
Rated: *****
It took 10 yeas in absence until Marcus Lilja could decide to start a comeback after his first album on the long-time out of business Swedish label October Records. Now he returns on the German label Life Is Painful Records and this release marks the 10th of this label, which also was a long time in hiatus. So with this background the listeners outside may expect a pure Synthpop album, which is so typical and often produced in Sweden. Well, it is Synthpop, but with edges and an organic attitude. Marcus proves his musical talents well by including guitars, piano and harmonica sounds next to the expected synth work in his songs – and he has played all these instruments by himself. I’m pretty astonished by this multi-talented musician, he has also some well thought lyrics to offer. It’s surely not the purest happiness he provides us here, some very depressive pieces obviously dealing with the pain of the loss of a beloved on a funeral ("Consolation Song") or the last seconds of a life ("Smoother" – let’s take another doze of morphine...) are not designed for the faint-hearted. To catch the completely scale this fine album has to offer takes some more rotations until some tracks like "Slide" or "Anything Else" prove their "singing-along-the-lines-attitude. Strange also that none of the tracks seems to start a hunt for some dancefloor compatiblity, with the few exceptions like the opener "Convictions" or "Down Here". With respect to the fact that this album has taken 10 years of getting produced, it seems to me like a review or a confession of some past and personal things which happened in Marcus’ life. This album deserves respect and attention although I’m not sure if the Synthpop fans will accept this mostly sad effort, which tries hard to break with some conventions. For me it’s musically and lyrically one of the finest albums out in 2006!!!
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anymore
Artist: TRITON 83
Title: Kunzt!-Gaz?
Format: CD
Label: SkullLine (@)
Distributor: SkullLine
Rated: *****
Another new output of the German SkullLine Mail order service, this release was done by one half of the project TT, which lately brought out a first CD "Opfer:Einheit". The already presented musical elements are also listenable on this new output "Kunzt!-Gaz?", maybe with a stronger dedication to harsh minimal and rhythmically Powernoise efforts. This well done release takes already known elements like pregnant German voice samples and combines them with pounding Electro-like bass line and of course the tormenting distorted drum patterns. "Terrorgefahr" features this element well, it is dedicated to some bombing attacks against trail stations of Berlin. Another heart-felting piece has to be named with "Terror Pakt" featuring the news content of the tragic happening of the terror attack in Beslan. "Hell-Sound" sounds like a cliché and reminds a bit on some OBZÖN GESCHÖPF works. "Warum" and "Lebensberechtigung" continue the more EBM than Powernoise style in a decent way, but then this release turns more and more into the Powernoise/Powerelectronics genre. Still very rhythmically arranged, TRITON 83 offer with the best pieces here, "Seelenfresser" or "Bestie Mensch" a perfect alternative to some known acts like NOISUF-X, XOTOX, FABRIKC or CONTROL-SYSTEM. The dark but still hefty tune "Ozonhole" gets my favorite vote here by offering some well done layers and well set in voice samples. Although not providing anything really new, this mysterious does well in this minimal harsh EBM/Powernoise style. And as usually, also this release is strictly limited to 100 pieces. Also a special edition of only 20 pieces packaged in a special steel box is in preparation. Act up soon and get it!
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