Music Reviews



May 26 2004
cover
Artist: CTRL (@)
Title: Lose The Image
Format: CD
Label: Diffusion Records (@)
Distributor: Metropolis
Rated: *****
After releasing their first two albums, Ctrl's singer decided to leave so their fans had to wait other three years for this new LOSE THE IMAGE. During the break, Brad MacAllister focused his efforts on his side project, Low Technicians, just to decide soon after that it was time to give a new form to Ctrl. He recruited a new member Alex Virlios (formerly of Provision) and with Jason Fenimore (already on guitars on the previous band incarnation) started to work hard to give a form to their third album. LOSE THE IMAGE is a real good album which has got hard 80's influences (melody of tracks like "Left To Find" make me think about A Flock Of Seagulls) but keeping opened the door to let e.b.m. and electro sound/structure come in. Even if the short "Transition Three" made me think about "Carnage Visors" (the long The Cure's track/soundtrack which was present into the tape version of "Faith") and the bass sound is really new wave oriented, the general feeling isn't of a musical revival. Power and melody are for sure elements the band is taking care of and the fifteen tracks are the evidence. Good one!
image not
available
anymore
Artist: Skinny Puppy
Title: The Greater Wrong of the Right
Format: CD
Label: SPV Records
Rated: *****

BUY from  BUY NOW from AMAZON (Amazon.com)
After eight years of absence from the scenes, one of the greatest electro-industrial-metal bands ever is back with their 13th album "The Greater Wrong of the Right" (on SPV US), and their come back is big time! Nivek Ogre (vocals) and cEvin Key (electronics, percussion) teamed up with producer Mark Walk and Ken "hiwatt" Marshall (of Tool fame) to bundle ten kick-ass tunes packed with aggressive guitars, stomping percussions, political lyrics, exciting electronics and an impressive and brilliant audio engineering production focused around a tight and complex work of editing and slicing, effecting, cutting and pasting, and of course a full, ballsy and straight in your face sonic impact.Skinny Puppy's history started back in Vancouver, Canada, in 1983, and they have certainly gone a long way, maintaining their signature-style sound and attitude and re-inforcing the explosive mixture with new generation musicians (the album guest-stars Tool's drummer Danny Carey and Static-X's singer Wayne Static on one song and features musicians such as Otto Von Schirach, Omar Torres, Collide co-founder Statik), breathtaking production, great lyrics (Skinny Puppy is one of the few bands who did stick to their guns throughout the years, spreading world-awareness about socio-political situations such as new world order, animal abuse - and the title says it all anyway...), great vocals (intelligible, with less distortion than in the past) and a sense of what and when that is absolutely extraordinary. Even though you can recognize the original elements that made the sound of Skinny Puppy unique and un-imitable, "The Greater Wrong of the Right" is not an exercise in nostalgia but rather a new step in their successful career that, to use their own words, "lacks any manner of forced anachronism or supposed nostalgic flair - it's about right now!". In other words you will be blown away by this: it is so strong and intense, so original and true and yet so innovative and forward thinking that it deserves 5 stars, just because the ruler doesn't go up to 11. It is quite simply Skinny Puppy! Look out for Skinny Puppy on tour with guitarist/bassist William Morrison and drummer Justin Bennett (Professional Murder Music, Thrill Kill Kult) starting June 11th in the US, with gigs in Europe in mid July.
image not
available
anymore
Artist: MOON ROCK (@)
Title: Charming Gravity
Format: CD
Label: Lunar Entertainment
Rated: *****
CHARMING GRAVITY is the third Moon Rock album and someway we can say that this is the album of their maturity. "Power To People" was their fresh debut, while on "Eclipse of the Mood" and this new one the band is defining their songwriting. The album is divided between dreamy ballads sung mainly by Jemma and catchy synthpop/electro tunes sung by Jack. Their pop music has always got a touch of melancholy but they also know how to add a certain dark vein to their sounds like on "Brother, Sister, Lover" or on "Charming Gravity", where the filtered vocals duet with the bells and the strings while they paint a dark atmosphere for the following lyrics (this is an excerpt): "Dancing past your demons, screaming, Straight into the heart of what I own This won’t ever happen again". Their pop isn't poppish, if you know what I mean. Melody isn't symptom of stupidity and this album is the evidence of the fact that there could be an intelligent way to do music. Sometimes I hear echoes of the latest Everything But The Girl (like on "Goodbye, I Love You" or on "Brother, Sister, Lover") but this time if we say synthpop we don't think immediately to Pet Shop Boys or Depeche Mode and this is good for a band. "Everyday Superstar - Glis Mix" and "I Think It's Over - Jemma Mix" were already included into their MCD released a couple of months before the album (it included also other two band mixes of the main title) and they anticipated the sound of the album, giving to the audience a juicy apple to bite. Of the ten songs I prefer the less melancholy ones, but in this case we can say that there are only a couple of them and when you'll arrive to "Angel In You" you'll question yourself if you put into your CD deck a T.O.Y. album. Anyway, CHARMING GRAVITY is a good album and you should give it a try.
cover
Artist: XIU XIU
Title: Fabulous muscles
Format: CD
Label: Tomlab (@)
Rated: *****
It's bizarre to put Xiu Xiu in the "synth-pop" category, for lack of better definitions, and realizing that it'd be hard anyway to try and stick them somewhere. There's actually quite a lot of electro-pop here ("Crank Heart", "Brian the Vampire", "Bunny Gamer"), but in a Xiu Xiu way, just like every possible influence they may draw upon: (no/new) wave, acoustic folk (the title track, "Nieces Pieces (Boat knife version)"), art-pop ("I luv the Valley OH!", "Clowne towne"), electroacoustic improv ("Support our troops OH! (Black Angels)"). It's not an easy record, but at the same time it has an impressive number of perfect pop songs and melodies. Almost every songs is memorable in itself, and arrangements are bizarre, complex and minimal at the same time: a sort of art-punk version of Antony and the Johnsons. I've also seen them in a superb live set as a duo, with just guitar, harmonium, synth, percussions and some pre-recorded beat, and Jamie Stewart is just an incredible performer, even in a more intimistic context. But what makes Xiu Xiu a world apart is probably their poetics, something sadly lacking in most indie bands. Their lyrics and imagery deal with abusive power/sexual relationships, fucked up personal (and political) situations, depression and dissatisfaction, but more often than not in an ambiguous, challenging way. Abusive, or horny photos are packed in a glossy pink layout, just as shockingly intense lyrics are sugar-coated into pop singalongs and la-la-la's.
cover
Artist: BEYOND (@)
Title: Shadeworld
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Distributor: Nulll Records
Rated: *****
Debut cdr release for this new-born German dark ambient project. I'd label it "funeral doom ambient" as it sounds like the ambient equivalent of bands like Until Death Overtakes Me, plus a healthy dose of classic dark drones (Lustmord, Amon, Svartsinn...). Exactly like funeral doom, you can find it, from time to time or during the same listening session, extremely fascinating or quite boring after a while, also because of its mammoth length. But this release is mostly good, and well balanced. The low, bass-heavy drones are mixed with depressive key symphonies, very funeral doom-sounding, and these are probably the characteristic I liked less. But as the cd progresses, the pure droning atmosphere prevails, and it's nice to tune out and drift along. A new release and a couple of sampler appearances are in the works.
[ Next ] [ Previous ]

[1...10] [11...20] [21...30] [31...40] [41...50] [51...60] [61...70] [71...80] [81...90] [91...100] [101...110] [111...120] [121...130] [131...140] [141...150] [151...160] [161...170] [171...180] [181...190] [191...200] [201...210] [211...220] [221...230] [231...240] [241...250] [251...260] [261...270] [271...280] [281...290] [291...300] [301...310] [311...320] [321...330] [331...340] [341...350] [351...360] [361...370] [371...380] [381...390] [391...400] [401...410] [411...420] [421...430] [431...440] [441...450] [451...460] [461...470] [471...480] [481...490] [491...500] [501...510] [511...520] [521...530] [531...540] [541...550] [551...560] [561...570] [571...580] [581...590] [591...600] [601...610] [611...620] [621...630] [631...640] [641...650] [651...660] [661...670] [671...680] [681...690] [691...700] [701...710] [711...720] [721...730] [731...740] [741...750] [751...760] [761...770] [771...780] [781...790] [791...800] [801...810] [811...820] [821...830] [831...840] [841...850] [851...860] [861...870] [871...880] [881...890] [891...900] [901...910] [911...920] [921...930] [931...940] [941...950] [951...960] [961...970] [971...980] [981...990] [991...1000] [1001...1010] [1011...1020] [1021...1030] [1031...1040] [1041...1050] [1051...1060] [1061...1070] [1071...1080] [1081...1090] [1091...1100] [1101...1110] [1111...1120] [1121...1130] [1131...1140] [1141...1150] [1151...1160] [1161...1170] [1171...1180] [1181...1190] [1191...1200] [1201...1210] [1211...1220] [1221...1230] [1231...1240] [1241...1250] [1251...1260] [1261...1270] [1271...1280] [1281...1290] [1291...1300] [1301...1310] [1311...1320] [1321...1330] [1331...1340] [1341...1350] [1351...1360] [1361...1370] [1371...1380] [1381...1390] [1391...1400] [1401...1410] [1411...1420] [1421...1430] [1431...1440] [1441...1450] [1451...1460] [1461...1470] [1471...1480] [1481...1490] [1491...1500] [1501...1510] [1511...1520] [1521...1530] [1531...1540] [1541...1550] [1551...1560] [1561...1570] [1571...1580] [1581...1590] [1591...1600] [1601...1610] [1611...1620] [1621...1630] [1631...1640] [1641...1650] [1651...1660] [1661...1670] [1671...1680] [1681...1690] [1691...1700] [1701...1710] [1711...1720] [1721...1730] [1731...1740] [1741...1750] [1751...1760] [1761...1770] [1771...1780] [1781...1790] [1791...1800] [1801...1810] [1811...1820] [1821] [1822] [1823] [1824] [1825] [1826] [1827] [1828] [1829] [1830] [1831...1840] [1841...1850] [1851...1860] [1861...1870] [1871...1880] [1881...1890] [1891...1900] [1901...1910] [1911...1920] [1921...1930] [1931...1940] [1941...1950] [1951...1960] [1961...1970] [1971...1980] [1981...1990] [1991...2000] [2001...2010] [2011...2020] [2021...2030] [2031...2040] [2041...2050]


Search All Reviews:
[ Advanced Search ]

Chain D.L.K. design by Marc Urselli
Suffusion WordPress theme by Sayontan Sinha