Music Reviews



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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Post Alcoholic Body Syndrome D(eath) Vol. 1
Format: CD
Label: Advoxya Records (@)
Distributor: Last Exit
Rated: *****
Third release of the new and promising Russian label Advoxya is this international Electro/Industrial compilation which features several almost unknown names hailing from the Russian Electro/Industrial scene, the already discovered Advoxya bands CYCLONE B and IMMUNOLOGY as well as some known names like INTERLACE, VIRTUAL EMBRACE or Z PROCHEK which have made already their way through labels like Memento Materia and Alfa Matrix. To license some successful acts from the Western labels makes also sense, because so it could be easier for this Russian label to get ground and help in case of international distribution. Things start also fine here on this comp with the newest child of the Advoxya family, THE-PULSAR, a trio hailing out of Russia of course, which will soon release their debut CD "The Awakening". Alfa Matrix recording artist VIRTUAL EMBRACE pushes up the speed and will punish your feet while storming the dancefloors with their lyrically redundant piece "Roots of Evil". BLOOD TRANSFUSION SET present a decent track in the Electro-Pop genre, SCHYZZO.COM is more straight, mixing some Powernoise elements in their driving Electro track. TEKKNO ORGASM, well the name already said what is to come next – Tekkno on speed, it reminds me a bit on a classic Off Beat act named GA-T. Z PROCHEK are a driving force on their label Memento Materia, here they have a decent appearance. NOTHING NADA is just another name from Russia I haven’t heard before. The music is melodious Electro-Pop, but this time with good female singer. Female appearances are also a trademark in the music of the Belgium project AIBOFORCEN, so here too with a decent appearance. Next one is Advoxya’s own CYCLONE B with a new and unreleased remix of one of their best tracks so far, "Nothing", here featured with some more aggressive vocals. This band can be named to be a foretaste of a coming wave of new and Dark Electro acts from Eastern Europe. IMMUNOLOGY also surprises here, they received a pure EBM/Dark Electro remix of their track "Fallen Angel" done by the Russian act IMPACT PULSE and the result is amazing! Already known stuff comes next from RUN LEVEL ZERO, a remix done by X-FUSION of "Under the Gun" and this one could be already discovered on the Alfa Matrix quadruple box set "Endzeit Bunkertracks Act 1". Comes then an unnecessary track by the Russian (?) SANGUIZ IN NOCTE with a driving guitar line. The already mentioned IMPACT PULSE are next and they proof that they have a lot of potential. Although their track features a more melodic hint they show a marvelous feeling for a correct release. This band needs some attention. The famous Swedish act INTERLACE gives us here nothing new or somewhat but with "Elohim" here is one of their best and most recognized tracks. Final track is done by TANGO NOVEMBER, a Techno side-project of CYCLONE B, here almost with an instrumental track.
This comp mark a big step in the young time of existence of this label. A lot of unknown names from which I am sure they will not remain too much longer in this unknown condition. This sampler is as good as the latest Interbreeding comps or the "Terrific Room..."- compilation of the French label La Chambre Froide. We will see and hear a lot of new and unknown bands still to come out of Eastern countries – I personally can’t await it!
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Artist: Christopher Kah
Title: A Wonderful Darkworld
Format: CD
Label: Axesscode (@)
Rated: *****
French label Axesscode presents a debut CD release by the solo electronic musician Christopher Kah. It is a release which is a bit difficult to categorize. It is all electronic-based of course, building up a mixture by taking elements out of Dark Electro, Techno and Electronica with here and there some experimental undertones. While the Synth layers and string sounds are almost infiltrated with a dark Electro mood, the sequences and beats provide a Techno background. Some vocals of Mr. Kah are featured as well, mostly very sparse and re-stranged with some KRAFTWERKian robot-like effects. Favorites I have found with the steady "Camille ist Tot", "Sextronic Bacteria’s" or the title track, while others like "Intumeti K" suffer from repetition and a too long playing time of over 9 minutes. Christopher Kah made a decent album here which is to my taste more designed to listen at home. Club visitors could be disturbed by the way back too experimental beats and the globally dark flair the release has to offer. Good stuff here for people who like to explore something different with an edge, and surely not designed for some pseudo-aggressive rivetheads. Well, it is a wonderful dark world, isn’t it?
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Artist: Ethelscull (@)
Title: ribbons into hysterics
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
Ethelscull is one Amelia Peel. The 20 track long "ribbons into hysterics" is a really hit or miss situation. Fortunately none of the "miss" tracks are overly long. Recorded on a 4-track 2002 to 2003 the albums recording quality is definitely lo-fi but not hard to listen to. "ribbons into hysterics" works it's best when Amelia gets behind the mic and whisps her soft vocal style over her droning guitar melodies. When this is happening the CD is moving full swing at a slow but hardly boring pace with some great stuff happening. The best examples of this would be the stand out tracks ""perishedinfits", "crash" and "strange fatality". However, when she opts to leave the mic behind, the tracks drop a notch and things get a little boring. The droning, heavily delayed guitars and textures aren't interesting enough on their own to fly solo and unfortunately I'd say that describes just about half of this release. So despite the mixed bag with this release it is still, without question, worth getting a copy if you're a fan of chilled out ambient melodic guitar work with extremely pleasing vocals.
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Artist: SOSTRAH TINNITUS (@)
Title: L'odore del ramo spezzato
Format: CD
Label: Beyond porductions (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****

BUY from  HERE
Right before Tvmvlvs Seraphim, Genoa's Beyond productions put out this release that could break into the heart of the same kind of listeners (although there're some consistent differences). During the first listening you can have the "itch" to file this cd under "dark ambient", sure, it doesn't go that far from how "L'odore del ramo spezzato" sounds like, but I'm afraid with such a definition you'll end underrating an interesting record. This cd displays a misty landscape in front of your own eyes and it's not the ususal "all black" thing, since there's a full range of colors hidden in between the lines. I'm sure Sostrah Tinnitus will conquer the favor of those into many releases on Hic Sunt Leones, as I've no doubt at times it's even better than some national heroes like Alio Die or Oophoi. This guy is able to lull the listener into a comfortable trip much better than Codeine (the drug not the band), imagine a solitary ride in the the forest shot on the cover. While the canvas it's made out of drones, the use of shells, rainstick, field recordings (together with synths and magnetic tapes) gives a religious atmosphere to the whole thing. For all of you skeptics out there the quality mark of this project could be guaranteed by the fact together with Cria Cuervos this guy it's one of the few italians to put out a cdr on belgian cult label Mystery Sea, but even without you just need to give it you hears. A good release: autumn is at the door but in "L'odore del ramo spezzato" the winter is already there.
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Artist: TVMVLVS SERAPHIM (@)
Title: Fortress ermetica
Format: CD
Label: Beyond productions (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****

BUY from  HERE
I think the fact many "open minded" metal labels started producing bands that are far from being metal overall is a great thing. I knew Beyond productions mainly for its "metal" (the word itself it's a bit generical, forgive me) rooster, but Tvmvlvs Seraphim together with Sostrath Tinnitus it's more post-industrial, dark-ambient. I think "Fortress ermetica" should be addressed to all those glorifying Cold Meat Industry and there's no doubt Tvmvlvs Seraphim sometimes it's right in-between dark-ambient and post-industrial. Some war-movies' samples and classical-lyrical (or gregorian) singing scratch the surface of the synth-magma. "Hidden war behind the door" and the title-track (judging from the song titles and from the artwork war outta be one of the authors' favorite subjects) evoke a dark pool made of drones borne out of synth, in "Fortress ermetica" you can even sense a melody growing underneath, it slowly changes vanishing into a gregorian chant outro. While "Decay of the hierophant" and "Europe after the rain" (the second version) keep on following the same dark ambient-apocalyptic thread, "The Burnt-out spa" refers to a more radical noise (power noisy!?) root or at least that's the impression you get from the mechanical drill that erupts all of a sudden in the middle of the scene. Without any doubt this release its far better than many recent releases on Cold Meat, "gut...gut!".
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