Music Reviews



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Artist: Greg Davis (@)
Title: Mort Aux Vaches
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Also part of the VPRO/Mort Aux Vaches series is the latest release by Greg Davis, a laptop artist and member of the Max/MSP software community (Cycling 74) who improvises his experimentations live on the spot.This CD contains everything from minimal and broken beat patterns, found sounds, natural outdoors atmospheres (or at least that's what they mimic), acoustic-guitar sounds, calm ambient soundscapes, wild brief distortions, belly dreamy sounds, concrete music toy instrument sounds, glitch electronica, processed baby's voices. I must say if this all was created exclusively with MAX/MSP it's quite impressive indeed.Davis has an impressive discography and also put out a couple of other project's records.The packaging of the CD consists in a purple reflective wallpaper that is really nice and unique when used to wrap a music release, but if it really is wallpaper I would never wanna live in such a horrible house!
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Artist: Zeitkratzer (@)
Title: Random Dilettantes
Format: CD
Label: Staalplaat (@)
Part of the Mort Aux Vaches Staalplaat series, "Random Dilettantes" is the latest fatigue by German project Zeitkratzer (which means 'timescratcher'), and features compositions by Reinhold Friedl to be played in random or shuffle/shuttle mode on your CD player. The concept behind these sound-fetishist experiment is that every musician involved (there's a dozen of them from all around the world) plays another musician's instrument without knowing how to, so you have 50 random tracks that work as one piece or can be listened to as separate sound installations, where you might recognize the sound of an instrument but nothing "traditional" will come out of it. Interesting concept for an ensemble that has been producing weird experimental music for six years and has collaborated with the like of Lou Reed.
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Artist: The Jeff Kaiser Ockodektet
Title: 13 Themes for a Triskaidekaphobic
Format: CD
Label: pfMENTUM (@)
Jeff Kaiser is known for his experimentation with large ensembles of classically and jazz trained musicians. The result is obviously a symphony of styles and sounds that go beyond what you are used to and mess your head up with sudden explosions of no-wave free jazz just when you were relaxing and enjoying the calm complex arrangements and the lucky improvisations of horns, string instruments and other acoustic instrument. With very few electric or electronic instruments involved, this album sounds extremely alive and present, exotic and weird, but at the same time natural and smooth. It'd be interesting to know how much of is written and how much is improvised...The CD comes beautifully packaged in a folded cardboard with silver prints and a string tieing it together.
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Artist: Minefield (@)
Title: Decomposition: reinventing Minefield
Format: CD
Label: self-released


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Minefield is the project of sensual female singer Tamara Kent, whose songs (released in their original versions on the "After the Ball" EP) have been remixed by this album's mastering engineer Karl Mohr and artists such as Blue Mars, Dead Poets Society, Ingrown, Soviet Radio, Cryptomnesia, Synthetic Dream Foundation, Spectre VII and Soy Futura. All these remixes make up for what is entitled "Decomposition", an album that blends her charismatic and ethereal singing style with ambient, dark and techno music, in search for a perfect balance of relaxation and dancefloor-friendly material. An out of the ordinary electronic album that potentially could please thousands of people around the world with its lush synth pads, its hammering beats, its electronic sequencing, its distant and floating vocal parts and its Amos/Apple/Enja-like vocal qualities. Two of the most danceable tracks will be released through Interdimensional Industries on a 12".
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Artist: Idiot Stare (@)
Title: Ghost
Format: CD
Label: self-released
After the infamous Sony Pictures and MTV conglomerates picked two tracks by Valencia, California based Idiot Stare for the 7th episode of the animated Spiderman series, the band has decided to embark on a remixing journey for one of the two selected songs, the title track "Ghost"; so, besides the original, you get interpretations by Chist Analogue, prophei, Penal Colony, Doll Factory, SMP, Compufonic, Jugend Staat, Inertia, A Different Kind of Cop, REwire, Acidfanatic and Universal Magnetic. What I like about this remix project is that, besides the recurring chorus here and there, the versions are really quite different between each other, which means the involved artists have done a good job at personalizing them and making them unique. The overall result is a pretty aggressive, industrial-metal oriented album that sadly sometimes sounds awfully similar to NIN but mostly introduces us to good electro-industrial music with guitars and angry singing parts. Well produced and solid. Really quite enjoyable!The CD also includes a bonus track ("World Destruction"), as well as a Quicktime video and a 5.1 mix of the title-track.
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