Music Reviews



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Artist: Screams for Tina
Title: 2003 A.D.
Format: MCD (Mini CD)
Label: Strobelight records (@)
Distributor: Indigo (Germany, Austria, Sweden), E.N.D.E. (Italy), Metropolis (US), Resurrection (UK)
Rated: *****
Screams for Tina are an icon in the Los Angeles goth scene. When after 10 years on hiatus they have shown signs of life and activity, last year, German-Austrian label/mailorder Strobelight, was quick in picking them up for the delight of all you fans of the true classical gothic sound. Just four tracks make up this Mini CD, the last one being a remix of their anthem "Eleven Eleven", which originally was released on a Cleopatra records compilation in the eighties. If you are into goth-rock you should definitely give this a spin, because it goes back to the roots of the eighties US/UK sound, and because even though it is just two guys with a drum machine, guitar & bass and a voice, thier sound is powerful and throbbing and they are obviously back in the game and ready to play.
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Artist: Hollydrift (@)
Title: Waiting for the Tiller
Format: CD
Label: Parasomnic records (@)
Rated: *****
Wisconsin based analog noister Mathias Anderson creates his own brand of experimental noise with the use of tape recorders and signal receivers, and his music makes a "non-confrontational" (as he puts it, in a very politically correct way) statement that reflects the choice tools in his tool box. The choice of material and the choice of gear to elaborate such material, show the very characteristic peculiarity that his production has: a taste for the old, an attachment to some sort of roots, a fascination with what is gone. His dark retro approach is based primarily on field recordings and caputred sounds from different sources (I'd assume old films are in that list), so in other words, at least its not just yet another pointless noise-maker that hides behind the easy and broad classification of "experimental", Mathias Anderson seems to have a goal. I am not sure what this might be, but his scope finds a personality in the selection of his sound palette's colors and moods to evoke. Not easy listening and frightening on some level, but also relaxing and memory-evoking in some other very twisted way.
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Artist: Dead Raven Choir & Never Presence Forever
Title: Rozrywa Szwy Ciszy
Format: CD EP
Label: Somnambulant records (@)
Rated: *****
When two characters like, Dead Raven Choir, a.k.a. Smolken, an exiled Polish anti-Communist prolific folk-psyche-noise artist, and Never Presence Forever, an equally prosperous American noister, get together, you know it outta be weird sounding. And of course Somnambulant records is alwasy attentive of such heretic and shadedly grimy collaborations and put this out as a 200 copies limited edition CD-R in an elegant and unholy DVD-size plastic sleeved handmade textured hard-paper sheet.Musically the latter of the two noisicians seems to have taken over, for the most part, as you'll hear deep and murky drones, noises, distortions, voices much more than you'll actually hear acoustic instruments, exception made for traces of lush string instruments in the distant background. Reverb halls, dismal atmospheres, eerie noises, nightmarish voices and long track titles (written in Polish and in English) make up this interesting 5 track release, which was inspired by the short-lived poet Krzysztof Kamil Baczynski, shot at the age of 23 by a German sniper during 1944's uprising of Warsaw. You may find more info at: Dead Raven Choir's (http://wolves.tamu.edu) and Never Presence Forever's (http://www.holyterror.com/neverpresenceforever) respective internet homes.
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Artist: no Xicic (@)
Title: Uneksija
Format: CD
Label: Onyxia (@)
Distributor: Onyxia Mailorder
Rated: *****
After a CD-R, an EP, a 7" EP on Drone records and a 3" CD-R spanning from 1999 to 2004, Finnish artist and pharmacist (that is some combination, can you imagine what he would have done in the seventies?) Henkka Kylloenen, a.k.a. no Xivic, takes the big leap to the full lenght CD format with "Uneksija", featuring eight tracks of creepy and unearthy dark-ambient music. Even though it starts out with an only somewhat disquieting uncanny piano improvisation over voices and drones, it soon steps into a much scarier place, where eerie layers of sounds create hollow, wide, cold and aphotic atmospheres made of slowly breathing atramentous noises that sound as if they were alive and sore creatures waiting to enter your gloomy nightmares and soar around the most ill-lighted parts of your mind. Your state of mind will be affected by these tunes, enhancing its nebulous and tenebrous sides for over seventy minutes, so be ready for it.PS Check out the cool paintings of the art work of this CD by Samuli Kontio as well as the nice and impressive industrial-inspired website of his record label Onyxia.
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Artist: ONE FOR JUDE (@)
Title: Hélice
Format: MCD (Mini CD)
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
After releasing their first album in 2001 One For Jude focused their activity on live gigs and only in 2003 they started preparing the new album and this MCD titled HELICE is a sort of anticipation of it. HELICE contains three new tracks and a live version of the main title recorded in Prague two years ago. The French band on this release produced three tracks that someway are really different the one from the other but keeping a certain distinctive mark. The main track "Hélice" is a mix of post punk and apocalyptic folk a la Sol Invictus, while "The punishment of the white rose" has got a bass line that remember me a song of the early Death In June but keeping a lighter approach dear to the early new wave (this is the track I prefer). "L'ébloui" is a ballad that fortunately isn't focused on melancholy only but in some way it has got a certain joyful approach. The live version of "Hélice" in my opinion isn't worth my attention as it is the same version of the opening track but only recorded badly.
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