Music Reviews



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Artist: POLYSPACE
Title: Tactual Sense
Format: CD
Label: Funkwelten (@)
Decent pseudo-Warp electronica from a collaboration between Polygon and For a Space. "Somewhere inside" inserts some Buddhist chants sample, "Latenz" has some breakbeat hint, "Grown out" and "Heaven" add some simple piano melody – but the core of it all is the usual, over-used rhythmic wallpaper electronica: nothing too jarring to the ear, but nothing memorable either. Anyway, better than other even more static Funkwelten releases. Boring layout.
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Artist: RAPOON/DESACCORD MAJEUR
Title: Salmo Salar
Format: CD
Label: Fario (@)
A nice add-on to the series of collaborative/split cds realeased by Fario (label of the Fear Drop mag staff), this 2003 release features two projects from the realms of ambient and experimental trance-electronica which complement very well each other. Veteran Robin Storey/Rapoon displays his usual top-notch quality array of mesmerizing loops and drones, melting ethnic acoustic instruments into currents of digital lava. His two solo tracks are further proofs of excellence and inspiration within an already impressive discography. Désaccord Majeur, with a remarkable list of releases on his side, proceeds along similar guidelines, but with a more definite rhythmical side, patent in the technoid "L'ogre éthérique" and a bit more subdued in the others - reminded me, at times, of Muslimgauze. The core of the cd, i.e. the eponymous collaborative track between the two, shows how the coupling was well-thought and effective, mixing Rapoon's trance ambiences with Désaccord Majeur's more prominent pulses.
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Artist: LABORINTUS (@)
Title: Stratilico/12riveroll9
Format: CD EP
Claudio Sichel is a young visual and digital sound artist who has frequently worked, over the last few years, on multimedia projects, and is a member of the Italian experimental music collective Ixem (www.ixem.it). This two-track mini cdr is a nice exhibition of Sichel's personal sound lingo. It could definitely appeal to those interested in microsounds, glitches and experimental laptop stuff, but has a kind of warm and bizarre impro slant which gives it a peculiar taste. The two long tracks are improvised sessions assembled using a self built instrument (made with rubber bands, springs, a Jew's harp and an electric motor) filtered through a Reaktor patch with a laptop. The result is a kind of free jazz concert played by moody objects and toys - warm, unpredictable and still very physical and "granulous", thanks to the interaction between the concrete source and the digital filter. Very well done, and definitely keeping faith to the "trade name" Sichel has chosen.
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Artist: NEON DREAM (@)
Title: Anodyne
Format: CD
Label: Equinoxe Records (@)
I'm impressed about how much this band (apart from the female vocals) sounds like the last Iggy Pop mixed up with some goth tunes. The singer's voice is real deep and catchy and the tracks have a solid sound which help a lot by keeping up the energy. As usual I don't like the female vocal (too ethereal and boring for my taste) but the granitic sound which mix Iggy Pop, Sister Of Mercy and Type O' Negative is sounding someway fresh and new to my ears. Of the nine tracks I prefer the most direct and distorted moments but also some ballads reveals good moments full of energy and pathos. Talking about tracks: "Red Light Anodyne" has got a certain crawling touch which remember me the Iggy Pop's ballads. The following track "Entrain" is a little too metal and based on solos to fit my needs of energy, even if it has got a catchy refrain. Let's skip track six (too mellow) and pass to "Overscreening", "Viable" and "Lilith". The first one is a good one while the eight minutes long "Viable" is the weakest of the lot: it sounds like a slow Christian Death ballad including Valor's moanings. With "Lilith" we have got again a good goth rock tune which ends the album. All in all a good album if you think that this is their debut!
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Artist: GANYMEDE
Title: Space And Time
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Cohaagen (@)
SPACE AND TIME is the new release by Ganymede and it's their third album. This time the duo wanted to do things right by packing the CD with a bonus remix CD, wich include also two new tunes (the instrumental "Departure" and a real cool song titled "Messages"), the "Daylight" video and an 80's replica of a car racing game which has got their music as soundtrack. The new ten tracks have always got that certain Pet Shop Boys touch to my ears (because of the vocals) but Ganymede have always been a band of their own. The sound is always based on 80's synthesizers sound with bleeping effects and pop tunes. Songs seems to be more refined and even if SPACE AND TIME is a pop album it isn't as immediate as it could seems. Each time you listen to it, the songs grow inside your ear and little by little they become familiar until you'll find yourself singing them. Talking about the remixed songs, Fr/Action, Blow-Up (cool revisitation of "Hong Kong" with a driving distorted guitar which duel with synth sounds), Nukleon, Drug Of Choice, Raindancer, The Lost Gospels and Axoe did a good work by giving to the songs a dancey or a dark touch (like on the catchy version of "Maybe Forever" remixed by Drug Of Choice). Definitively this is a good album packed with cool stuff... something you can't miss.
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