Music Reviews



Jul 03 2003
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Artist: VVAA
Title: Futuristic Trips 1
Format: CD
Label: Meta Wave (@)
FUTURISTIC TRIPS 1 is the first chapter of this Meta Waves serie which is dedicated to new electronic bands with a surprise coming from the early days of electronic music: El Aviador Dro. El Aviador Dro are active since 1979 and in their first incarnation they included members of Esplendor Geometrico in their line up. Meta Wave is currently distributing their discograhpy in Germany, so in this first compilation they are including two tracks, "Antimateria" and the instrumental "Gran Plaza Asimov" which are taken from "Opera Cientifica" (best of, released in 1999) and from "Mechanisburgo" (released in 2001). The other ten tracks are coming from selected discographies or are unreleased tracks of: Seji Minus Ac (I've already reviewed their latest CD of fractal electronic industrial music), Krometekk (two tracks for this American band who presents a mixture of electronic jungle, cosmic electronic suites and early e.b.m.), Krometekk (female project who presents a tracka of technological cyber e.b.m.), Psychonic Parandroid (German project of techno e.b.m. deeply influenced by futuristic ambient soundscapes), Analogwerk (electronic techno with samples taken from the Voix Bulgares choirs), Perchteuropa (his tracks is a minimal electronic suite based on analogic like bleeps and watery sounds) and there's a little joke by The Meta Intergalactic Orchestra (a nice robotic and pulsing fifty four seconds track). Nice compilation that will introduce you to interesting bands. Check this out...
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anymore
Artist: COPH NIA (@)
Title: Shape Shifter
Format: CD
Label: Cold Meat Industry (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe


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SHAPE SHIFTER is the third release (but it's the second full lenght) of Coph Nia, project leaded by Aldenon Satorial. Without listening to the tracks and only looking to the lyrics of the tracks I noticed the interest of Aldenon for occult and specially for the works of Aleister Crowley. He used for "Hymn To Pan" and for "Gnostic Anthem" two writings of the Master Therion: the first one was a sort of poem dedicated to the pagan god Pan and the second one is an excerpt of a ritual called Liber XV The Gnostic Mass. At a first listening we can divide the tracks in two kind. The first one is the dark ambient kind of track, where the atmosphere has got a prevalent place respect the vocals (see for example "The Mirror", "To Fix The Shadow" or "The Hall Of Truth"). The second kind of tracks is represented by the ones where the lyrics are the most important thing and where the vocals are evocative and bright and mixed loudly respect the rest. These tracks are represented for sure by "Hymn To Pan", "Gnostic Anthem" and "Call Of The Jackal". Personally I prefer the dark ambient ones because of the effect they are able to create but also the remaining tracks are interesting as Aldenon's vocals catch your attention and create a sort of theatrical effect. The weakest point of the CD is represented by two covers: "Prime Mover" (originally performed by Leather Nun) and "Stigmata Martyr" (by Bauhaus). Even if the latter is the best one of the two, because is interesting how Coh Nia treated it giving to it his personal touch (by slowing it and using orchestral sounds and creepy choirs) at the end it sounds like an exercise or a simple tribute to a great band. "Prime Mover" instead doesn't make me feel nothing but indifference but since this is the only track I didn't like I can end this review by recommending you to check this out.
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Artist: Johnny Hollow (@)
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: Pop Off
I must admit I am having a rough time reviewing this record because, after listening to it for about the 10th time in a row, I still can't really figure out how to describe it to you accurately (which, let me tell you, is a bitch for me but most definitely a high for the record). Waterloo-based Johnny Hollow have come up with a great record, that's for sure: complex, multi-faceted, loaded with intense feelings and quite imaginative and graphic in its very unique nature. The first band that came to my mind when I heard the opening track with the gracefully feeble and harmoniously fragile female vocals was The Cranes, but then that same singer ventured into totally different territories (think Madonna etc) and is joined by a male voice and plenty of other assorted vocal material as well. Depoche Mode, David Byrne, David Bowie, Dram Into Dust, Butterfly Messiah, Garbage, Black Tape for a Blue Girl, The Soil Bleeds Black and others come to mind here and there. The reference to the typical 4D sound retains its value throughout most of the record and to that label you might wanna add Projekt records (one of the two should really give these guys a deal), even though, like I said earlier, don't expect anything anywhere near a homogeneous album. What seem to sound like Mark Snow-inspired strings and cello arrangements, when used provide for a sophisticated, atmospheric, sad and melancholic background and usually turn the tracks into movie-soundtrack-friendly material (especially, as you might expect, for Chris Carter or David Lynch creations). Their texture-intensive folk-electronica with haunting and compelling beats is soaked in emotions and breaths pop music. You'll be raptured by its gorgeous and intricate ethereal fabric, entwining around the particles of styles and sub-genres that see the light of night and the darkness of day during these exciting 51 minutes. They say it's passion and madness. Absolutely an amazing debut!
Very nicely done art work as well (by extremely talented graphic-designer and founding member of the band Vincent Marcone from MyPetSkeleton.com).
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anymore
Artist: Faith And The Muse
Title: The Burning Season
Format: CD
Label: Metropolis Records
Distributor: Metropolis Records
With my recent emergence back into metal (not fully of course!), the first two tracks "Bait And Switch" and "Srendi Vashtar" got me to head banging a bit! Who ever thought I’d headbang to Faith And The Muse?! Those two are somewhere between ethereal and thrash metal a little bit, like Testament (minus some of the big riffs) with some of the best damn ethereal vocals this side of the Rio Grande. This CD is overall a mix of styles, with everything from their Flaminco-driven goth rock textures to trance to metal/rock elements. This group has always been a rather large ink blot on the face of a bland, overly marketed yellow canvas of an ethereal scene. And reading the interviews with them they are some very intelligent people as well as intelligent musicians. For those who are wanting something a little more daring in their ethereal and goth rock, rather than the same old divas belting out Cocteau Twins covers over and over. Rating: 10.Also recommended would be Rhea’s Obsession, anything by them.
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Artist: COLD FLESH COLONY (@)
Title: Sanatorium
Format: 7"
Label: Steinklang Records (@)
Cold Flesh Colony is another project headed by Koen / Murnau (see the reviews section and the interviews section to get more informations about his releases) and SANATORIUM is its first release. Released as a limited edition of 200 7"s, SANATORIUM sees Koen dealing with classic power noise kinda tracks. Pulsating noises duet with feedback and screaming tones while he screams his lyrics. Even if the project deals always with noise, Cold Flesh Colony has got a different approach to it respect Murnau. Here the noise seems to be used as background to layers of distorted vocals. Sounding more homogeneous respect Koen's primary project, Cold Flesh Colony recalls a little the sound of the early Ramleh but treated in a personal way. "Lay still and breathless / Sharp glittering chrome /
deep inside your bones / now help me pray / for the death of everything new"
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