Music Reviews



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Artist: VITTORIO VANDELLI (@)
Title: A Day Of Warm Rain In Heaven
Format: CD
Label: Equilibrium Music (@)
Rated: *****
You know that I'm not a big fan of medieval atmospheres and before listening to the first solo release of Ataraxia's Vittorio Vandelli, I was thinking if passing this CD to one of our collaborators. You want to know why I decided to review it anyway? Well, first of all Francesca (here she's the guest singer on almost all the tracks) uses her voice in a different way, putting back the chants and the acutes. Second: the fifteen songs span through folk ballads (some sound Spanish, some French), dark dreamy tracks a la Dead Can Dance (see "The curse in a dead man's eye"), goth electro moments (like on "A sadder and a wiser man" and on "I killed the albatros") and other thousand ones. Being classy and eclectic, Vittorio succeeded into creating an interesting album which could catch a wide range of audience. It ain't rock or electro for sure but for whom are in search of something sophisticated and inspired it could be a good choice.
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Artist: CREATING.PARADISE (@)
Title: Killing Dreams
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
Before the real review, a little of history: Creating.Paradise duo was already active on early '90s as Syncout. In 1997 with the end of the first project, Bjoern Muehlnickel decided to create new stuff under the Creating.Paradise monicker. At the beginning he focused the new project on dreamy electro instrumental tracks. 1998 saw the release of the first Creating.Paradise album with Bjoern Honert as guest musician. Four years after and with Bjoern Honert back on the line up of the band, they released a new album titeld "Thru the valley of darkness". On early 2004 they prepared a new album "Render inconscious" but since they hit the 47th position at the Sonic Reducer band contest, out of the 50 contestors, they decided to put it back and to work on something different. KILLING DREAMS is the result of their waiting and it brings to the audience seven tracks influenced by '90s electro (early Haujobb, In Strict Confidence, etc) where dreamy reverbered sounds duet with pumping rhythms and nice melodies. The atmosphere of the CD is quite good: there isn't a real track which could function as single (maybe "Fingerprints" could be the one, because of its catchy melody) but generally KILLING DREAMS is a good work. Sometimes the dreamy approach takes an hold and this coulbe a weak point and a distinctive mark of the band at the same time (judgement is upon the listener's taste), but for sure we aren't talking about lousy tracks or bad musical approach. A band to consider...
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Artist: FEKTION FEKLER
Title: Into the Sun
Format: CD
Label: Black Flames Records, e-noxe (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
Maybe this can be called to be the comeback of the year? Right on, FEKTION FEKLER have made their good name in the world wide Electro/Industrial scene lately 6 years ago with their last CD "Kling Klang Bedlam", released in Europe through Out Of Line, in the United States under the flag of the now defunct Pendragon Records. After this there was a long time in silence and nobody did really know what happened. And now they are back, this time under the flag of the polish Black Flames Records and this new CD "Into the Sun" is a real time journey back. The style of the compositions is still the same, the vocals have their rich and sometimes dramatically influence like before, the drum and percussion work is just like usual, yes and also the sounds can easily recognized as the ones done by FEKTION FEKLER. This means that the music of this band hasn’t received any new addition, the whole increasing technology especially in case of soft synths, VST, software samplers and so on seems to have no entrance in music of the glorious brothers Robert and John Bustamante. Or in other words: FEKTION FEKLER still know how they want to sound. Like it or not but this CD has a lot of good points and features which stand out, it is alive, it varies a lot in styles and it has – as usual for a FEKTION FEKLER CD – its own identity. Maybe their music is not conform with the typical Electro/Indus stuff and also some outstanding tracks are hard to find here but again – who cares? FEKTION FEKLER remain themselves and if you like their previous works then you must have also "Into the Sun". Enjoy it as a whole album, as a floating unit.
Nov 25 2004
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Artist: UV (@)
Title: Codebreaker
Format: CD
Label: BLC Productions (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
Highly chart positions at the Metropolis sales, licensed from Warner Bros. for a participation on a Matrix DVD set – well, a lot of success for an almost new band with their first official debut full-length CD, if we don’t count their self-produced "Refractions: Remixes in a Different Light" to be this. Hailing from Cleveland, Ohio, this three-man project has earned a lot of praise in advance and with this "Codebreaker" they proof easily that all the fine words about all their previous works and compilation appearances are well deserved. Mainly based on danceable EBM/Electro themes they give the listener a wide amount of new sounds, strong distorted but enjoyable vocal impressions and a steady rhythm work which will let your feet bleed! It’s nice to see (and to hear) that they did not forget to include their excellent ability to create fantastic melodic layers in their tracks, "System Sabotage", "Everything’s a Lie" or the more slower piece "Skeletal", which awakes some PUPPYan reminiscence, are here to mention. My personal favorite is "Nightcrawler", also slow and nearly in the same way like "Skeletal" because it features all the good points in UV’s music in one track. Two remix works taken from their "Refractions: Remixes in a Different Light" did also find their way on this CD, "Skeletal" by TEXT BLEAK and – more interesting – a RAZED IN BLACK remix of "Dementia" which pushes the speed of this track from normally 110 to 144 bpm. "Codebreaker" is a fine and well produced full-length CD with more than 70 minutes full scale Electro/Industrial, which works for the brain as well as for dancefloor action. One of the favorites for the "Best album in 2004" contest!
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Artist: NG-PRO (@)
Title: Neo Omega
Format: CD
Label: Attic Works
Rated: *****
Taking inspiration from electro e.b.m. bands like Apoptigma Berzerk or Front 242, Ng-Pro (formed by the duo Niels and Gewin), produced a demo back in 2001. The year after they moved on by releasing a mini cd titled "Burn" which entered the Dutch Underground Charts, staying for sixteen weeks. Convinced by several good results, the band moved into the studio at the end of 2003 just to record their first full lenght NEO OMEGA. The ten tracks span through melodic electro, industrial instrumentals, e.b.m. powerful tracks with distorted guitars, synthpop, etc. For example "Amy" or the closing "Shelter" (with the vocoder filtered vocals) are a mixture of Kraftwerk and Front Line Assembly while the instrumental "Welt", sometimes remember early Wumpscut. The good thing is that Niels and Gewin do it with extreme confidence of their skills and because of this the album sounds convincing from every angle. Re-processing every influence was the right move and I can't imagine how the next one will sound. I hope, good as this one!
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