Music Reviews



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Artist: Hearts of Darknesses (@)
Title: Music for Drunk Driving
Format: CD
Label: Schematic
Distributor: Asphodel
Rated: *****
It's always nice and makes us very extremely happy to see that some unknown new and up coming artist we believed in or tried to help in the past with an interview or by reviewing a demo of, makes it or lands a deal with a record label. This time the lucky party was Frank Musarra, composer, performer, mc and, recently, member of Stars as Eyes. I first saw him perform as Hearts of Darknesses in some club in Brooklyn, just his mic and a cd player and his crazy moves... Imagine somebody who just got bit by a tarantula and dances the poison off as if the floor was covered with nails on fire, or something along those lines... Basically he screams and jumps around, allegedly he even broke his collarbone once falling after getting entangled in his microphone cord... "Music For Drunk Driving" is a pretty good representation of what the audio at that show was like. Epileptic digital core with a punk attitude and an electronic soul, glitch noises, distorted vocals, un-even beats and all of that. Now all he needs is a wirless microphone and he's good to go! Read the interview with Hearts of Darknesses on these pages.
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Artist: The Strike Boys (@)
Title: Playtime
Format: CD
Label: Stereo Deluxe (@)
Distributor: Caroline
Rated: *****
After their debut on Wall of Sound, The Strike Boys are back with their third album "Playtime" (second on the german label Stereo Deluxe), which includes a bunch of funky-ass breakbeat club tunes that will make you bounce.Thirteen tunes featuring special guests Danish reggae-dubber Emo, 21 years old female Mc Blaze, Ballet Nuernberg dancer Cyrena Dunbar, Eddie Greeme and Malente.Groovy electro-funk with soul and ambient influences. Luscious, shaking, trippin tunes that are easy and pleasing to listen to. If this won't be a home run the boyz definitely hit a strike in the club scene.
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Artist: NEULANDER
Title: Smoke + Fire
Format: CD
Label: Diskob (@)
Rated: *****
Refined sounds and electro experimentalism with quiet female vocals are waiting for us from this pre-release of the first Neulander album. Formed in 2002, one half of the Neulander duo isn't new to musical experiences. In fact, Adam Peters has got a long career as producer. He also did the orchestral arrangements for Echo & The Bunnymen and produced Siouxsie & The Banshees, Triffids and Lloyd Cole to name few. Korinna Knoll is originally from Austria and she met Adam in New York in a salsa bar on the lower east side of Manhattan. SMOKE + FIRE is their first full lenght release as previously they released only a 10" "Sex, God + Money" which was a sort of anticipation of the album as it was containing four out of ten songs of this CD. Musically they remember me a sort of clash between My Bloody Valentine (because of their mid tempo songs, tense but never fast), Lush and Human League. With this reference points, because of my my tastes, I'd give them five stars but I feel something is missing. Korinna's voice sometimes lacks of pathos and Adam's mimal arrangements aren't enough to keep up my enthusiasm. For example the ballads "Just There", "Sometimes" and "People's Love" have got the same atmosphere and to be honest are a little tedious. Tension is missing and I definitively prefer tracks like the opening "Sex, God + Money", "Girl Out Walking" (which is also also a kind of ballad but with a certain tension which intrigue me), "Flying", "Blue Party" or the "Schauspieler"'s experimentalism. I can say that I'm saving half of the album and is my humble opinion that with a little more power this would be a good one...
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Artist: Marques Wyatt (@)
Title: Horizons
Format: CD
Label: OM records
Rated: *****
Marques Wyatt, one of the pioneering west coast Djs, continues to draw from his wordly inspirations and his ethnic roots while assembling the spiritual lounge music that has made him big in his home town Los Angeles and all around the world. After his life-changing club-hopping experience in 1984 New York City's underground, Wyatt went back to LA to bring house music to his fans and blending it in with the world music influecens he grew up with, just like Spiritual Music NY Dj Joe Claussell did for the east coast at roughly the same time. "Horizons" reflects a much later stage of this continuous blending, in my opinion he might have even taken it a little too far, the roots of house music are hardly to be heard and the music is definitely stepping towards more commercial-friendly dancefloors. But aside from how pop-ish it might sound, you wanna go check him out at his spot Deep in LA for a sweet sweaty night of warm club atmosphere. To be released March 23rd 2004.
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Artist: Daimonji (@)
Title: Improg
Format: CD
Label: Musea (@)
Distributor: Poseidon
Rated: *****
These guys seem to have been feeding of massive doses of Area (the singer almost sounds like a re-incarnation of Demetrio Stratos) and Zehul. Before getting together as a trio on the occasion of a concert also featuring Date Course Pentagon Royal Garden and Bondage Fruite and giving themselves the name Improg, the members were inolved with Ruins, Altered States and Jun Togawa, and of them is the owner of God Mountain records. After that performance (of which two tracks are featured on this CD) they changed their name to Daimonji and entitled the CD "Improg", which as you may imagine is mostly based on improvised music and performance. A fresh fusion of jazz-prog-rock, jiggling with the oxymoron of nowave structures and the artsy fartsiness of experimental avantgarde.
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