Music Reviews



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Artist: :BAHNTIER//
Title: Revulsive
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
With REVULSIVE Stefano Rossello's :Bahntier// reached its third album . Since the first listening the eleven tracks of the album show immediately an high concentration of tension and paranoia (see the distorted rhythms looped and the few sounds used on each track). Usually I do my reviews listening to the promos with my headphones, well, with this I had to take some pauses because of the sound: compressed, hypnotic and disturbing. Some tracks are based on this sound but tracks like "Cramp", "Entrapvoices", "Inauguration of doom" are more on the industrial/e.b.m. side (Skinny Puppy and Nitzer Ebb seems to be the principal influences on these tracks) while "State of gray" and "Inscrutable" are more dark ambient oriented. Even if it has been a disturbing listening, little by little I felt a sensation of sickness pervading through the room and if this is what Stefano was looking for, well, he succeeded! You have been warned...
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Artist: FELSENREICH (@)
Title: Tiefe
Format: CD
Label: Empire of Rock/Nova Media
Distributor: Nova Media
Rated: *****

BUY from  HERE
Really interesting is this German project. Their music continuously evolves, from a brutal attack to soften atmospheres, again to aggressive danceable rhythms. This album, their fourth work after two EPs and the album "Am Ende Der Zeit", is a mixture of aggressive Gothic rock and a Metal sound and heaviness, the whole enriched by an hallucinating keyboards’ work, with some neoclassic and morbid atmospheres that remind me of the latest DIMMU BORGIR or TIAMAT. Particular is the use of trumpet, a sound not usually played in bands like this but giving strong emotions such as in "Use The Fire" or "Island Part II". They have the ability of being always involving, moving from intense melodies, with piano and female vocals, to sharp guitar riffs and a voice like a razor blade. Female voice is not the usual soprano as in Gothic rock bands, but has more personality, in some parts (as in "Animal") the vocalist reminds me of the great GITANE DEMONE. Songs flow like a river, if you let them take you away. I think "In My Dreams" is absolutely the best song, but you will also love "Animal", "Nightmare", with its pomp-rock keyboard and a rough guitar sound like the first DARKTHRONE, "Ein Hauch" with a chorus to be sung with a great choir in a concert, or "Starchild", "Angel" with its sad melody. Maybe sometimes the band can soften some harshness in vocals, but I think on the whole they are at a very good level. CD’s Graphics are very good, very particular and disturbing. I recommend to listen to them and, if you can, see them live, I imagine they’ll give a strong emotions.
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anymore
Artist: AUTODIGEST
Title: A compressed history of everything recorded, vol. 2: Ubiquitous eternal live
Format: CD
Label: Ash International/ Crůnica
Rated: *****
Accompanied by mysterious pictures of nearly deserted places, but with a blurred photo of a cheering crowd in a stadium or concert hall, Autodigest's new installment is a tough one to, ahem, digest. Conceived as a "history of audience applause" ("Somewhere along the way, we seem to have forgotten what exactly we were cheering for... Until we eventually stopped cheering, as nobody was playing anyway"), the hour-long track is exactly made of that: endlessly looped samples of applauses and cheers and delirious screaming. No other sounds, except for a minimal drone which actually sounds like a kind of resonance or echo of that hyper-exposed apocalyptic mess. Quoting the press sheet, "[The piece] is presented as less of an archive and more of a critical eye loaded with a few conceptual cards as foundations, from Debord to Baudrillard, from Harvey to Adorno". Whatever. It was fun to read a few reviews which have been published meanwhile, as they spanned from "pure genius" to "pure crap" to a more diplomatic "most bizarre record of 2004". I recall listening to an untitled work by Francisco López and thinking it was a bad joke as it was only crickets sounds throughout, then re-listening to it some years later and losing myself in it with amazement. Save for the political/conceptual differences, this is a similar case: it starts sounding like a joke, then it finally makes your bowels churn. The screaming voices, once looped and overlapping in a droning mass, pass from pop hysteria to pure tragedy - this could be a nightmare of Altamont. But on a deeper level, what makes this cd so frightening to me is the sense of futility and loneliness oozing from this sweaty über-audience - Autodigest coldly re-creates and contemplates modern nonsense as in an in vitro test.
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anymore
Artist: TILIA
Title: vous rÍvez / vous ne rÍvez pas
Format: CD EP
Label: Crůnica
Rated: *****
An audiovisual artist, with a remarkable curriculum in music and video direction, Alexander Peterhaensel debuts as Tilia with this intriguing ep (3 tracks + a quicktime/divx video). While definitely more electronic-oriented, "vous rêvez / vous ne rêvez pas" reminded me of Brian and Chris' recent, and brilliant, "3" on Dielectric Records, due to its elegant interweaving of synthetic beats and memorable autumnal melodies, here mostly played by a piano. A careful, layered mix often alters the main melody through loops, skips and light glitches, so that it is recognizable and slightly blurred at the same time. As with Brian and Chris (and mid-period Tortoise, which I have to mention again as a possible reference), the result is both very direct and refined, the longer, more dilated "Moronic" being probably the most successful piece. It's a shame I haven't been able to watch the video yet (which has been - unsurprisingly - directed by Peterhaensel himself, with footages taken in Cuba, Germany, Morocco and England), but Denis Stuart's pictures are a nice visual accompaniment to start with. A notable debut.
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Artist: TERMINAL BLISS (@)
Title: The Art of Seduction
Format: CD
Rated: *****

BUY from  HERE
TERMINAL BLISS play a music between electronic and rock, distinguished by the sweetness and softness of atmospheres and voice. In some songs they show also a more aggressive approach, such as in "Dirty Mind", where fat synths and guitars attack your ears, or in "Now is the Time", more danceable and involving. Listening to their "The art of seduction" emerges a band taking inspiration from DEPECHE MODE, above all, but with a personal attitude and a range of influences that make both melodies and compositions a good example of what a good band can offer. Some songs, such as "Take it", echo with citations from PINK FLOYD, in particular from the first period, and THE CURE. This, far from being a negative thing, is a proof that they have been taught by the best bands in rock scene. Rhythm section has for the most part a sound between trip-hop and dub, sometimes a techno beat, and this, united to the progressive electronic synths, gives a perpetual sense of being in a dream, or under water. You have to listen to their music completely relaxed, with closed eyes, for they have to catch you and show the path to the Knowledge. Some of you will stand up and dance conscienceless, other will fly cherished by sounds and lyrics, a real eye on everybody’s life. The only thing, in my opinion, the band has to take care of, apart from the natural evolution, is the voice. Even if the singer Daniel Cain has a more dramatic approach and a sharper timbre, many times I thought I was listening to Dave Gahan. Yet, sometimes a more varied approach would give more energy to the songs. Buy it and see them live.
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