Music Reviews



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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Pandora's Box, Invasion And Friends 2k6
Format: CD
Label: Invasion Wreck Chords (@)
Rated: *****
A couple of years ago on the "Invasion and friends" serie compilations you could find mostly unknown bands and, most of the times, bands coming from the same Ambassador 21 area. With the years and with the different European tours made by the band the friends have increased and you can check it out by reading the tracklist of this new compilation. On PANDORA’S BOX, INVASION AND FRIENDS 2K6 most of the bands are already signed to a record label: see Dive, Synascape, Converter, Mimetic and Iszoloscope that collaborated for a track titled "Heard Voices", P.A.L. or Projecto Mirage, to name few. As you can notice most of the band are under contract with Ant Zen, label that is taking care of the distribution of the Invasion Wreck Chords releases. Anyway, if on the early volumes of the serie industrial distortion was the way to go, this time the seventeen bands try to explore every dark corner of melodic distortion mixed with rhythm hysteria. The wildness and the rage are now under the wise control of people that during their years of activity reached a good balance between philosophy and action. The sign that something has changed find the confirmation into the fact that the last name of the tracklist is Dalek, a band of electro hip hop (their track seems a My Bloody Valentine track with rappers). Something changed and this is good because music needs fresh ideas!

01. DIVE - Insanity [live at Razzmatazz 3 - Barcelona 12.04.03]
02. SYNAPSCAPE - White Trash [2005 edit]
03. AMBASSADOR21 vs. FRAGMENT KING - The Ballet Of Bullets
04. CONVERTER - Be Broken [unbreakable rmx by NERVE FILTER]
05. SUICIDE INSIDE - Angel
06. MIMETICISZOLOSCOPE - Heard Voices
07. CTRLer - Nuclear Device
08. RASPUTEEN - Auf Der Flucht
09. P.A.L - Overlap [slow strokes mix]
10. KLANGSTABIL - Wir Sind Ganz Zusammen [live in Leipzig]
11. ROGER ROTOR - Drown Delay [live in Morbio Inferiore'05]
12. MONOID - Credit
13. PROYECTO MIRAGE over BUBBLE GUM - Energy
14. SHORAI - U R My Self Destruction Button
15. NOT HALF - Become A Being Of Light
16. NTT - Defeatist
17. DALEK - Ever Somber
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Artist: The Silence Kit (@)
Title: In Regulated Measure
Format: CD
Label: Azteca Records (@)
Rated: *****
This 7 track CD by The Silence Kit certainly sounds familiar even upon the first listening. Yet, it is completely something new at the same time. It's like when you hear something familiar but you can't quite put your finger on why it sounds as familiar as it does. Careful listening will reveal varied aspects of influences from bands like Joy Division, The Cure, Echo & The Bunnymen, and maybe even a bit of The Swans. There is still something I cannot quite put my mental finger on, but this is something that will appeal to anyone moved by the barer forms of Gothic rock from the early punk ages. There is something raw and disturbing yet very beautifully revealing within the chords and rhythms of The Silence Kit. Patrick McCay, founder, lead guitarist, and keyboardist for the band, has definitely tapped into the emotional isolation portrayed by the early forms of his genre. However, he has updated the sound a bit with modern electronics but no so much that you would lose the raw, earthy tonality of the DYI rock band sound.
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Artist: THE PSYCHEDELIC AVENGERS (@)
Title: The Psychedelic Avengers and the Decterian Blood Empire
Format: CD
Label: Fuenfundvierzig (@)
Rated: *****
Hello, you psycho-freak! Try to be straight and clear for a second and read carefully cause here we've something good for your next extra-sensorial experiences. The crew of this spaceship presented this double cd not as a compilation, but much more as a collaboration that joined different musicians or freaks heads coming from different countries like Japan, Greece, Sweden, UK, USA, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Finland therefore we may say that's an international freak allegiance. The release is very varied so much that if you don't read the linear notes coming with the press sheet it all looks like a compilation. One track is quite different from the other even if it's true there’s a psychedelic sensation that permeates the general image painted on the canvas, the cut of the whole project is probably uniformed so to empower the impression it has been manufactured by the same hand. For stupid it may sound to use categorization to separate the different tracks we have ambiental-space-drones, psych-rock-songs, psych-pop-tunes/ballads and psych-electronic-fragments on both of the cds. This double work is rich of echoes and I'm not just referring to space-echoes or echo pedals (that you have to take for granted in some of the tracks), but also about the fact there’s an abundance of influences coming from the Seventies. To say it all the music is deeply influenced by artists like Can, Amon Dull, Faust, This Heat, Popol Vuh, Kraftwerk, Sun Ra (one of the song has his "space is the place" sentence haunting the refrain) Pink Floyd and only god knows what else. "Your attention please!!"... Have you noticed that all of that great musicians I've just mentioned were or have been into the whole idea of space trips or have been considered "avant-garde" during their hey-days. Ok, sorry for the small digression, but I think it could help you to see this delirious project with the right eye, actually the whole idea/mixture has a strange taste if drunk as a whole cocktail. Obviously some tracks have much more appeal than the others, following my personal taste I've had the best trips while experiencing the psych-rock/psych-pop tunes like "As darkness spreads its evil wings", "A little gravitron tells its tale" or "The last space station". The second cd is a bit more rock oriented and homogeneous but absolutely complementary to the first one. Usually when dealing with revivalism I don't go mad for innovative ideas or anything like that, but sometimes this space crew has been really blessed by good taste. Recommended to those into psychedelic music or into the "Seventies", but worth of a check for anybody else into weird projects/records.
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Artist: RF (@)
Title: View of distant towns
Format: CD
Label: Plop
Rated: *****
Top class electronic poppiness manufactured by Plop records and hi-profile cd as you could have expected it to be. Right with the coming of spring here we go with a relaxing sun bath in a pool of melody, the word is "pop", yes, Ryan Francesconi revitalizes the refinement of "easy listening". Consider RF could break the hearts of those into Stereolab, Mogway, Giardini di Mirò or Notwist but with the usual good amount of electronics that's the trademark of the artists on this japanese label. Differently from the rest of the releases I've heard on Plop, Francesconi’s sound is much more "normal instruments" oriented (that's probably where it gets close to many "post rockers" like those I've mentioned: bass, guitars, male and female vocals painting it all ethereal, trumpet, effects and a lovely use of tremolos. Soft without being neither pathetic nor boring like many others selling their soul and their creativity just to sella couple of records more. Sometimes I had the impression I was listening Belle and Sebastian ("The boy with the arab strap" era) filtered and remixed and that's ok with me. The fact all is "dreamy" and ethereal has to do with the light drumming he programmed, I mean being electronic it's obvious it all gets also rhythmical but he does it in a really elegant and "mimetic" (?) way. In the beginning there was 4AD and now their nephews, even if RF is not so ethereal and new wave like many of the artist on that cult label. Approved by my girlfriend.
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Recreation-X Display Disobey V2
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Urbcom Music (@)
Distributor: Nova Media
Rated: *****
Already active since 1996 (and so we also have to celebrate their 10th year anniversary, congrats...), this Anglo-Dutch label leaded by both J. Hookens of JERICO ONE and Dave Escott (AWAX) returns with a double full-length CD set presenting rarities and special mixes out of their label program. Lately they could also get a distribution deal with the German Nova Media, so now their work and power will be spread all over the European continent. A DCD indeed has a lot of space to fill, so no real wonder, that several acts are here present with more than one track. Several "guests" are included here, for example the Alfa Matrix recording artist NEBULA H, the well known harsh IDM artist SOMATIC RESPONSES, or the artists of the German Sonic-X label SKORBUT, ANTISTASIS and GLENN LOVE. Bands also co-operate here often for mutual projects, so also this is responsible for a wide musically diversity. The music itself presents all known formulas of modern electronic-based music, styles ranging from Electro, EBM, Industrial, Synth Pop, but also Breakcore, IDM or Trance elements. Favorites can be named with the only one and real EBM piece here, "In Zenith" done by SKORBUT, then the very well worked out experimental tracks by ALIEN SIX, a side-project by Geoff Pinckeny of the UK Synthpop legend THE NINE. Almost well and with a rich amount of diversity is featured by the works of J. Hookens’ own project JERICO ONE, with 6 (!!!) contributions on the top. There is a lot of nice stuff here to be checked out, please read also the very informative introducing words by Amanda Lear and the rich give track informations. A release to follow without hesitation and an impressive start for this label to reach a wider recognition.

DISC-1 [ DISPLAY ]

001: NEBULA-H FEAT PANGEA - andalusion +
002: JERICO ONE & AWAX - dcoy *
003: BIODRONE- c02 *
004: INTERCITY3 - windows [ club mix ] *
005: AWAX - statica [remix] *
006: ALIEN SIX - c sqared [edit] *
007: JERICO ONE> flashing light *
008: GLENN LOVE & T.H.INDUSTRY- iceland
009: KINHO- terminal *
010: ALIEN SIX & JERICO ONE>- stratastate
011: BIONIK PHUNK- supersonic +
012: INTERCITY3 city at night *
013: SEROTONIN- funkwall *
014: DEATHSTAR- mybodydrifting *
015: AWAX- lines *
016: JERICO ONE>- extol *

DISC-2 [DISOBEY]

001: AWAX- ion protocol *
002: DJ****- breakthrough *
003: ANTICRACY- uso derog [edit] *
004: SUDDEN INFANT- angelic agony
005: SOMATIC RESPONSES - omnivox [edit] *
006: SKORBUT- InZenith
007: DJ****- abberration *
008: JERICO ONE>- ulackra *
009: ANTISTASIS- TraumZeit
010: BIODRONE- pusher *
011: JERICO ONE>- bodyshock *
012: DJ****-metrophage plan B *
013: KYOSUKE TOKANAGA- extreamviolation
014: AWAX- know enmies *
015: BIODRONE- distrangled *
016: UNIFORM- day 6 in the season of mistakes *
017: BLACKPEPPER-thOughts

* Exclusive unreleased mixes or edited previously unavailable mixes / compositions
+ White label only or Dvd / promo-video transmissions
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