Music Reviews



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Artist: Hypnoskull (@)
Title: (G.O.D.) - once again
Format: CD
Label: Spectre (@)
Rated: *****
Hypnoskull is one of the loudest and most dissident voices of the international industrial scene. Based in Belgium, Hypnoskull releases a CD on an Antwerp-based label for the first time in his career and you can definitely hear the Belgian influences at work here. The sound is as powerful and saturated as it gets in that country full of great industrial sonics and bands (if you like the sound coming from labels like Daft and Spectre, you'll love this too!).Hard hitting pounding industrial beats with brick-wall compressed ear-splitting saturated sounds and surgery-precision injections and cuts of highy defined and sophisticated sequences and layers of other sounds (I seem to recognize some sounds from some records, but maybe Hypnoskull is deeply into sound designing rather than sampling when it comes to sounds). To top it all off this record pushes the boundaries of politically correct (if there even is such a thing for an artist as outspoken and non-mainstream as this) by mixing in a vast array of samples of military voices from the battlefields (all carefully pitched for anonymity and effectiveness; sounds like they come from war movies or war video games). To make the machine-approach sound more human AND convey a socially-minded thought-provoking message, Hypnoskull walked the extra mile, and that just deserves attention and prise in my opinion. A great electro-power-industrial record with some balls and a message: just the way I like it! There should be more artists like Hypnoskull... Rather than a bunch of sheeps with nothing to say, finally we have somebody that makes a fuss without just making noise.Look out for his follow-up record "Panik Mekanik" on Ant-Zen.
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Artist: GIUSEPPE IELASI (@)
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Hapna (@)
Rated: *****
Giuseppe Ielasi... yes the "relentless" Ielasi?...his personal discography keeps increasing and the fact he made it on cult labels like Hapna means he’s getting the recognition he deserves. This time the cd opens with an heartbreaking gloomy lullaby that I'm sure will capture the attention of the most reticent listeners. Differently from its prelude, the rest of this release is more rhythmical and less easy listening as one could expect. Sure, Ielasi hasn't left his latest peculiarities back home, thus the second track gives slowly way to a simple melody. Track after track this sweet depression savour will remain on your lips, it goes really well with quiet summer nights, it gives way to a night ride were lights glimmer like small spots on you rear-view mirror. It's really hard to get how many/which instruments have been played and processed by the italian musician but the balance between analog and digital sound is definitely good. As I wrote there's more rhythm than ever before but it's relatively discrete and above all not disturbing at all. I think artistically Ielasi is in full blossoming of his fertility. There're a couple of brilliant melodies that I think will easily break the heart of the most emotional of you. Ielasi melancholic mood is giving some of its most juicy fruits.
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Artist: HIV+
Title: Overdose Kill Me
Format: CD
Label: Caustic Records (@)
Distributor: DSPB
Rated: *****
After the demise of his past label Black Flames Records of Poland the Spanish act HIV+ aka Pedro Penas y Robles is back on track. He could sign a deal with the up and coming Spanish label Caustic Records, although Pedro lives since several years in the south of France. The name HIV+ is well known in the international Powernoise/Industrial scene, also thanks to several live performances like the last year’s gig at Infest, surely a highlight in the history of this act. Pedro also made himself a good name of being a DJ at several different locations. His new CD features 8 real audio pieces, different – as usual – it its kind and art. A lot of collaborations also happened again and Pedro does well to integrate several guests hailing out of different music genres to fill in his rich diversity. Three tracks here ("Suicide Diva", "Vicious Death" and "Eternity") he has composed on his own with a little production help of the Swiss act STENDECK. His famous track "Havoc 2027" is again available, this time in a remix work by both favorite members of the Powernoise legend ESPLENDOR GEOMETRICO, Saverio Evangelista and Frederico Spini). We have then some noisy instrumental remix of the track "Break It Loud" done by NÖVÖ and a great reconstruction by Pedro on a track of the totally underrated French act DATARAPER, from which I haven’t heard since a long time, my favorite piece here. A real Electro tune is also available, French mad man Remzi Kellici aka OBSZÖN GESCHÖPF created a stomping EBM piece out of the HIV+ track "Schäden". Please check also out the enhanced video of two further HIV+ tracks, live recordings taken from the mentioned Infest 2005 gig. Like every release Pedro has conducted so far, also this new one is worth any investment. It is not the fast speedy monotonous Powernoise, no, this one has its own authentic style. Also the artwork featuring the hot cutie named Vanessa really got me here...
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Artist: WYNARDTAGE meets ACYLUM (@)
Title: Lords Of Darkness EP
Format: CD
Label: X-Cem (@)
Rated: *****
Yes, both favorite acts hailing from the German X-Cem collective return here with new and previously unreleased stuff. Both actors behind these successful Dark Electro/Industrial acts, Kai Arnold (WYNARDTAGE) and Pedro Engel (ACYLUM) also teamed up here to produce as a duo the title track "Lords Of Darkness" as well as the dark instrumental piece "Without Breathe". "Lords Of Darkness" is the main track here, a danceable club smasher and available here in 4 different versions, one remix was done by the new collective partners DAVANTAGE, which I would call the best out of the four mixes. Then both acts present themselves 6 tracks each consisting of a few new pieces, alternative versions and remix works created by different friends out of the scene. WYNARDTAGE offers excellent remix works by FORMALIN ("I’m Not Your God") and LA MAGRA ("Du Hast") and an own created remix of the club hit "Waste Of Time". Three new tracks are on here from which "Suicide" gets my vote for the best piece, while "No Confidence" is a bit too simple structured and turns into some useless Hellektro attitudes. I have the slight impression that WYNARDTAGE turns more and into some harder areas while growing on equipment. A new full length release of this promising act is scheduled to the fall of this year. Comes next ACYLUM with their unbreakable kind of Dark Electro/Powernoise-inspired music to offer 6 pieces, but unfortunately with only two new tunes. But these two tracks, "Rape" and "My Pressure Is Hate" are worth every investment, especially "Rape" will drive the tormented souls of the dark club visitors for some Pogo-action on the dancefloors – effusions of blood guaranteed! WYNARDTAGE and MAY-FLY offer well done remix works more based onto the Electro side, while the Sonic Violence Experience remix of "War" turns this track into that what this cool name offers: a sonic violence experience. So we have still the remix of "Black Virus" created by POLARLICHT 4.1, but – it can’t follow the rough coarse of destruction! Something specially stands behind this release. It will be soon a hard-to-get item because it is strictly limited to only 160 numbered exemplars. Plus it is also only available directly from the X-Cem community, so don’t ask your dealer. Make sure to contact Kai Arnold under the given contacts here and try ASAP to order this great release.
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Artist: ANGELSPIT (@)
Title: Krankhaus
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Distributor: DSBP
Rated: *****
Australia’s Cybergoth female/male duo returns with a new hard hitting release with a German title "Krankhaus", and indeed, the conceptual outcome of this CD belongs on a hospital pretty much "designed" out of the insanity kind behind this act. Yes – this CD ROCKS, because like on their already discovered debut, Destroyx and ZooG combine harsh and attacking guitar riffs with stomping rhythms patterns which offer a special dedication to distortion effects and male/female vocals standing alone or as a duet. Possible musically relationship can be found somehow to KMFDM or MORE MAN THAN MACHINE, but – with any respect to both acts – ANGELSPIT have so much more to offer. Mostly the tracks are straight arranged, real Crossover assaults which make you pummeling for more. Nice to hear that they do never "forget" to integrate the Electronic part, it is globally lesser Metal-like than expected. A nice development I have notice since their debut "Nurse Grenade", they have laid a lot of effort into the outcome of their vocals. The vocals of both are sounding almost more clear than before, although they are still open for experiments ("Scars And Stripes"). "Make You Sin", "Get Even", "Dead Letter" and the last track "Wreak Havoc" can be named here to be the favorites of this hefty release. Please note also the fine artwork providing the very own and insanity world out of the brains of this duo. Think about a filthy clinic invaded by our both dear musicians and several Cyberpunk-inspired guests doing some horrible experiments on two mummy-like victims. This isn’t a computer-based comic strip, no, it is real photographic art. I can’t remember that I’ve seen anything comparable before. Rich detailed artwork, a cool new "Krankhaus" logo, excellent models, nice music – unbelievable that this whole album and the huge work behind it is completely self-funded. I don’t know, but – should I advise a big label like Metropolis to kick off the lately uninspired KMFDM and to sign this great ANGELSPIT duo? This would be well deserved! Get this rocking release, now available at the cool DSBP mail order!

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