Music Reviews



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Artist: THE ACTOR
Title: Cover Girl
Format: 10"
Label: Enfant Terrible (@)
Rated: *****
Coming from the dark corners of the '80s the dutch act, The Actor did a really good eletro wave song called "Covergirl" back in 1982. Thanks to Enfant Terrible, now, we've got the opportunity of check it out in four different versions: the original 1982 version, a 2005 version (the track has been entirely re-played nowadays and it sounds appealing as the old version!) and two cover versions. The first one thanks to Porn.Darsteller (who make it sounds just like early Die Form) and the latter thanks to It & My Computer (he did a raw semi acoustic version that sounds like early Matt Johnson). This 10" is a limited edition of 516 copies and it is worth it, so you've got to hurry to get your copy!
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Artist: JANOSCH MOLDAU (@)
Title: Bleed On
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Janosch Moldau Records
Rated: *****
BLEED ON is the new Janosch Moldau single and it contains three tracks: "Bleed on - The masterlamb single mix", "Passionately" and "Reloved - deconstruct mix" (the original versions of "Bleed on" and "Reloved" have been released on "Redeemer" the first Janosch Moldau's album). The remixed tracks sound really passionate. The first two minutes of "Reloved" with its melancholic ambient atmosphere are really convincing, for example. The new track, "Passionately" is similar to Depeche Mode's "Little 15", a different kind of melancholy but the atmosphere is similar. The b/w video of the main track is nice and it is an important step for Janosch Moldau Records. You can find it also for download at finetunes.net
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Artist: Tape (@)
Title: Rideau
Format: CD
Label: Hapna (@)
Rated: *****
Jesus! Hapna is getting bigger and better release after release and I can't even wait for the new 3/4 Had Been Eliminated, but in the meanwhile Tape is here and that's pure pleasure for your/my ears. If you're new to the band, this combo hailing from Scandinavia is the last metamorphosis of "intelligent-pop", it simultaneously combine originality, pop lullabyes, acoustic instruments and electronic music. What do you think about Mum? They've been one of the pop sensations of the last years, honestly I think they were ok, but I've never been so much into their records...well forge it, "Rideau" strikes right where Mùm was failing. These Scandinavians build endless landscapes harmonized with an organ or a keyboard like Labradford, the melody is embroided with a trumpet, an acoustic guitar as well as many other instruments, and arrangements are so good that the length (about 46 minutes) end to be "just too short". They wait patiently to sort out every ornament, each single piece of the puzzle is put at the right place and at the right moment, everything is well developed around some simple melodies that will breaks into your heart like cupid's arrows. The vibraphone and the acoustic guitar sometimes move in unison creating the magic. I'm sure the small noises crossing these melancholic images will drive many of you to a comfortable landing. What to say about "Sand dunes"? It makes you feel like sucking from your lovers' nipples...it makes you wish it never ends.
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Artist: LAL
Title: Warm Belly High Power
Format: CD
Label: Public Transit Recordings (@)
Distributor: Caroline
Rated: *****
In 2000 Toronto-based Lal released "Corners" and cut out a little niche of fans for themselves that kept growing as they started to play with a live band and got to open for Nelly Furtado, Terry Callier, Roy Ayers, State of Bengal and others. I haven't heard their debut record, which is said to be "gritty", but I listened to its following October 2005 "Warm Belly High Power" for about 5 times now, and have let myself be captured every time by how sublimely and unnoticeably it can carry one away... Eclectic and multifaceted, this Canadian outlet effortlessly maneuvers through picking and borrowing from the sonic traditions of Northern Europe, South Asia, Latin America mostly, and if you wanna mention every little detail, you could possibly add West India and Africa... In this hyper-geographic intense and hot magma of sound palettes, Rosina Kazi, who at times sounds like a more relaxed version of Furtado herself flirting with the ever so vocally quoted Beth Gibbons, nonchalantly weaves through her partner's Nick Murray's elaborate textures made of lo-fi, slow-motion breakcore, trip-hop, orchestral hints, dub, french musique concretisms, spanish guitars, world music percussions, electro-pop, minimal techno, downtempo, jazz, hip hop etc... The exquisite musicianship of instrumentalists Rakesh Tewari, Nilan Pereira, Santosh Naidu and Ian De Souza help convey the message properly, in fact this record is so well done that it has already been remixed several times by Nick Holder, Moonstarr (also on Public Transit Recordings), Nu Era (4 Hero) and Abacus. If you like albums that will make spin your head in every direction, definitely go for this one...
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Artist: TOTAL MACCHINA (@)
Title: Dream Machine
Format: CD
Label: Kinetik Media (@)
Rated: *****
Total Macchina is a side project of John Langdon (a.k.a. Inform3r) and Katya Casio which are both active also as Hong Kong Counterfeit. DREAM MACHINE is their first release and it contains ten gems of electronic purity. The sound cherishes '80s but John and Katya for sure dig also electronic music of the '70s. Listening to tracks like "Elephant storm" you immediately think about Jean Michel Jarre (of the Oxigene or Magnetic Fields period) or Kraftwerk when you listen to "Cash register". Total Macchina balance really well the dance bits with the experimental side of their music, thanks to the dissonating melodies or the arrangements (most of the tracks are instrumental), maybe. This blend of rhythms and research of the inusual (check "Grid jumper", "Valley of the kings"or "Faded photograph") create a sort of dark vein that give to their music something that isn't that normal to get nowadays: creativity. Great album that makes you wish for more! Follow them...
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