Music Reviews



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Artist: Saints of Eden
Title: Overload
Format: CD
Label: Metech recordings (@)
Rated: *****
British Metech recordings' band Saints of Eden's third album "Overload" is a mostly electronic-based attempt at joining small parts of the gothic tradition of Sisters/Nephilim, dark nuances of Cure and evilish/epic metal bands with the synergy and tradition of electronic body music, bits of dance influences and shades of industrial. The album plays pretty smoothly but lacks a little bit in originality. Its influences are well played out and generate atmospheres of tranquillity and grandness, while the rhythmical side of the album goes for harder industrial-rock beats and guitar riffs that accompany raw growling voices in a style that is somewhere between ebm and black/gore... Visit their well done site too.
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Artist: TRANSFORMER DI ROBOTER (@)
Title: Metal Kings
Format: CD EP
Label: Deco (@)
Rated: *****
METAL KINGS is the first real and proper release by the Transformer Di Roboter duo as they previously partecipated only to compilations. Johannes and Alex first met in high school and they have played in various bands together since: Dånzen Jetzt (Klangkrieg), Shakti-Maan and Chlorgeschlecht (Deco) and they have performed in the UK, Germany, France, Holland and the US. As you can imagine by the title this E.P. covers four famous metal band's tracks. The duo succeeded into personalizing the original tunes but also being true to the original versions in a way you can't imagine. How did they do it? Simple. They took the original songs and they did a midi version of each of them using only General-Midi sounds. In this way Refuse/resist (by Sepultura), "Walk" (by Pantera), "Raining Blood" (by Slayer) and "Enter the sandman" (by Metallica) live a new life without losing their peculiarity. The lounge interlude of "Enter the sandman" is just fantastic and after the initial assault of low-fi distorted electronic sounds it's a real surprise. Thumb up for the originality of the band and to Deco which released it. I can't imagine what Johannes and Alex will prepare next!
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Artist: DJ SMEGMA (@)
Title: Smegma Bitch Up
Format: CD
Label: Lupinaria
Rated: *****
Totally dedicated to craziness and to sampling creativity, SMEGMA BITCH UP is the first effort of Dj Smegma. Known to take part to the Lupinaria crew, I already talked about Dj Smegma into my latest Lupinaria's compilation review where we already found "Arrotino trance-national". Listening to all the twenty tracks I can't decide if Dj Smegma is a bored guy who's trying to do something fun or if he's just a genius who doesn't care about conventions. Each track is composed of various sources samples: phone recordings, adverts, other people's records, everything is fine if it's a new source for a track and there aren't restrictions or censorship. In this way we know that the mistress of "Ricordate, servo" costs less than shit and that she's the only one in Rome who's coming from Switzerland or that Godzilla took a trip in Mexico (on "Gozzilla in Messico") and you can see a snapshot of the event on the front cover or the CD. You can also find an electro-core cover of Amanda Lear's "Tomorrow" and other stuff for only less than four bucks. To tell the truth the tracks aren't all good but at least half of them are worth your money. You could also (as stated on the inner cover) get this CDr along with a friend and then make copies and distribute it as this is a no copyright and no profit project!
Artist: The Colour
Title: The Colour is Out & About
Format: CD
Label: Monarchy Music Corp
The Colour's new disc "The Colour is Out & About" is a bold dish of retro rock n roll with the vocal verve of The Doors meets Robert Smith of The Cure, the instrumental initiative of 60s and 70s rock with the precocious pop attitude of The Cardigans (and The Cure again). Little this original (while being so very remembering of roots) exists in today's rock scene, I must say. In a lot of ways I would list these guys as the new Cure (them again, I know, and the evocative vocal stylings certainly push heavily that direction but the music isn't so far removed either, though it is its own thing) or variation thereof. The new New Wave? The music is ballsy and manages not to sound terribly pretentious, though by all rights it should. Such whiskey smooth music that percolates with the flavors of things past and forward thinking songwriting certainly deserves attention. The solidified sound acheived with this fine mixed drink is admirable. Catch this fresh wave of rock.
Artist: Black Tape for a Blue Girl
Title: Halo Star
Format: CD
Label: Projekt
The dynamics - both in instrumental and songwriting terms - of Black Tape for a Blue Girl's "Halo Star" is the personified melancholy that's as much a member of the band as the actual humans who serve as vessels for the angst. In many ways, this can be considered definitive of the goth genre (the non-metal, non-industrial side) in that, like the broadly sweeping spectrum of bands loosely dubbed "goth" mostly due to the shadowy mood, in that it moves through a number of different instrumental constructions in its effort to face the pain within. Besides the soft and deliberate but captivating vocals, there are a number of different flavors - all within Black Tape's style - of music. Tribal percussion and world flavored music grace "Tarnished"; drifting flute, gentle acoustic guitar and lethargic and simple percussion flow through "the Gravediggers"; "Knock Three Times" surprises with its downtempo morphine nod to burlesque or crooner music of yon old times ... classic style filtered through the goth sensibilities of Black Tape; "Damn Swan" is haunting and ethereal and mesmerizes with ghostly female vocals; hints of Pink Floyd can be heard swimming through "Dagger"; and the concluding title track compresses heartache into a piano driven piece with the vocals leaving the sense of saying goodbye with a cure unfound for the soul's pain. And yet as varied as this description sounds (and I've not mentioned every song on the CD), what's most compelling is how subtle the differences seem to be in the course of the track to track flow of "Halo Star". Sadness and wistfulness pervade ever second of this lonely but warm stream flowing slowly, weepily through the mind.
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