Music Reviews



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Artist: COIL / THE NEW BLOCAKDERS / VORTEX CAMPAIGN
Title: Dolbied
Format: CD
Label: Black Rose (@)
Rated: *****
Released twenty years ago on a limited edition tape of only 50 copies, DOLBIED is a noise project that gathers the sonic experimentations of early Coil, The New Blockaders and Vortex Campaign. If you know the early Coil material such as the track "S is for sleep" or their Zos Kia / Coil tape, well, this one has got nothing to do with those sounds. Here the two long tracks of that tape make you release what the sound experimentation was back in the '80s. The sound collage, son of the cut-ups experiments of Burroughs, find the three bands performing a magmatic performance made of clanging sounds, feedbacks (on the first part) and treated guitars (mostly beaten ones, it seems), metallic feedbacks, echoed percussive sounds and whatever could sound like hell on earth on the second part. The release as a bonus, contains also three Vortex Campaign tracks (the last two are unreleased tracks titled "The melancholy mad tenant pt.1 and pt.2") which present a sound less caothic, respect the DOLBIED tape, based on primordial loops made out of feedbacks and percussive sounds: the result is hypnotic and alienating at the same time. This is your chance to discover the roots of industrial music and even if sometimes it could sound naive, remember: that is history. The release is limited to 500 copies (100 of them are into a cloth bag) and the CD is contained into an hand made three painted panel package.
Check also: www.thresholdhouse.com and www.thenewblockaders.org.uk
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Artist: FORETASTE (@)
Title: Beautiful Creatures
Format: CD
Label: Boredom Product (@)
Rated: *****
Announced about a year ago, finally BEAUTIFUL CREATURES, the debut Fretaste's album is out. A year ago I postponed my judgement about the band, waiting for the release of this CD. Well, I must say that the duo formed by Sylvie and Pierre refined their style and they produced twelve tracks of electro wave that really convinced me. I didn't remember their music to be that seductive, so just to give a good judgement I checked the MCD that already was containing four tracks that have been re-released on BEAUTIFUL CREATURES and I was right, because now they sound amazingly better: I think that the production of the album helped so much giving a new life to "Discordance", "Victim's heart", "For your own good" and to "Re-love". The vocals are better mixed with the instruments and the music sounds well balanced. In this way the band's skills are better shown and you'll will appreciate the catchy melodies and the electro wave style they deal so well with. The album doesn't sound retro even if you can hear the '80s influences. Melancholy is well balanced with the energetic arrangement and, in this way, the calm and mysterious Sylvie's voice find completion into the beating drum and the synthesizers programmed by Pierre. Tracks like "That smiling man" or the main title "Beatiful creatures" sum really well the new band's style and the whole album is a convincing one that prove that in one year the band did a wonderful job.
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Artist: SUICIDE COMMANDO (@)
Title: Godsend/Menschenfresser
Format: CD EP
Label: NTP/Dependent (@)
Distributor: Alive!, Metropolis Records
Rated: *****
The genre leader is back with two new tracks, "Godsend" and "Menschenfresser", available on Johan van Roy’s very own NTP label, a new sublabel of the rising German Dependent. This release is also available through Metropolis-Records for North America. Both two tracks receive here each two remix works done by currently rising names like GOD MODULE, REAPER, AMDUSCIA and AGONOIZE, so we have a 6-track SiCD with a nice digi-pack artwork. Both original versions are of course the outstanding pieces here, and especially "Godsend" features that "hard-in-your-face" attitude in this typically SUCIDE COMMANDO kind and will give for sure the coming club hit for the next months. I have noticed also a slight dedication from the poppy-like structures richly present on his last full length release "Axis of Evil" back to a more harder sound, maybe taken from his masterpiece "Mindstrip". Lets say that this new tracks feature the best of the both mentioned past full length albums, also the nice and still unreleased track on the "Advanced Electronics Vol. 4" compilation proves this. The here featured remix works can only follow the intense aggression of the originals. AMDUSCIA made the best one here and could well incorporate their vision of electronic music in combination with the given material. REAPER, lately often asked and booked for remixes, totally disappoint here by offering repetitive bass lines without any idea or inspiration. Although this SiCD doesn’t offer anything which could be described as new, I am rather impressed, how Johan van Roy is still able to integrate his vision of EBM/Electro music. All bands of the currently hyped Hellektro/Harsh EBM genre can only follow him and so the original. There is no real rival in the field, and this also doesn’t change with the risky remix appearances of a well known and similar act like AGONOIZE here. Worldwide limited to only 4000 exemplars and I am pretty sure that they will be all sold out. So act up soon and get this piece!
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Artist: STOP THE WHEEL (@)
Title: Nothing
Format: CD
Label: Madcap collective (@)
Rated: *****
"Lo-fi indie folk" that's the galaxy you'd better look for if you wonna find Stop the wheel. If a title like "Nothing" makes the old farts like me think of punk nihilism, the music comes from another planet, it's folk, mainly acoustic guitar and vocals "back at the origin". At times this cd recalled Evan Dando's Lemonheads in the midst of the "Mrs. Robinson"-phase (above all tracks like "Bastard he was"), but the softest songs are closer to Guided by Voices or Jim O'Rurke (sure, minus his Bacharah-arrangements, so "american folk!" to the bone). Yes, Stop the wheel's music has reminiscences of american folk, Mark Kozlek? Pedro the Lion? I think these guys can appreciate both of 'em. I know I've started by saying "lo-fi", the recording is intentionally rough but good, the way it has to be. I think the main quality of the songwriter here is that the guy in not trying to be anybody else but himself: naive, but not pretentious at all. It's breakfast time and many of these tracks can ease the bore while going to work...sometimes it feels like John Fahey and Nick Drake are the fathers of us all...may God bless both of 'em!!.
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Artist: PAINBASTARD (@)
Title: Storm of Impermanence
Format: CD EP
Label: Accession-Records (@)
Distributor: Indigo
Rated: *****
A companion release for the in May 2005 released full length CD "Overkill" - yes, the success of this German solo effort by Alex P. is growing in constant manners. "Storm of Impermanence" consist of four new PAINBASTARD tracks and several remix works done by friends and label comrades based on two of the best tracks taken from "Overkill", "Nervenkrieg" and "Todesengel". Of course the new tracks receive the most attention, especially the opener "Hidden Game Of The Devil". An excellent and memorable synth layer, harsh bass line sequences, a steady rhythmic torture and vocals in style of Rudy R. of :WUMPSCUT: - ready done is the next club smasher! A different and lesser distorted effect on the vocals on the second track "A Kingdom For A Life" gives an impressive result, especially in the refrain I get some remembrances to some old-school acts ala CAT RAPES DOG and POUPPEE FABRIKK. But definitively more impressed I am with the slower "Breakdown", which feature some excellent broken beats and again a thick melodic content. The track "Don’t Ask Me Why" is a remake of an older PAINBASTARD track done in the early years of this band. Then we have four different remixes for "Nervenkrieg", done by good names like LIGHTS OF EUPHORIA, REAPER, CONETIK and Mr. PAINBASTARD himself. But all don’t give any impressive further elements to the strong original version available on "Overkill". Way back better is the remix of "Todesengel" done by [:SITD:], which only reminds from the vocal content to the original version. The music and sounds from [:SITD:] are of their finest efforts, very nice, clear and majestic. 9 Tracks with a playing time of more than 42 minutes – well, reasons enough to pick up the efforts by Germany’s coming leader of dark and hard Electro/EBM/Industrial music. PAINBASTARD’s own new recordings are promising enough for further more efforts by this talented act.
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