Music Reviews

Artist: MOON ROCK (@)
Title: Eclipse Of The Mood
Format: CD
Label: Lunar Entertainment
After their debut "Power To People" Moon Rock are back with their ECLIPSE OF THE MOOD. With this one the duo refined their sound and song writing bringing us fresh tunes like the opening "The Deed Is Done" or the two remixed by B! Machine ("See A Lot" and "Everybody Everywhere"). This new album is a good one and the ten songs are catchy enough to gather more fans from the altenative scene because songs like "Time To Play" and "I Think It's Over" remember a little New Order of the "Republic" era (I didn't like too much their newest one I prefer thousand times the last album) and Pet Shop Boys. Only a little more production and their could really get more attention. The peculiarity of this album is that only four tracks out of ten are sung by one of the Hoboken duo, the other ones see as guest vocalists Jemma, Damian "Plague" Hrunka and Dave Baggot. Never boring, catchy and worth the listening...what do you want more to get your copy of newest Moon Rock? P.s. Unfortunately their website isn't updated and it's really poor and you won't find any information about this CD. Write them and help spread the word.
Artist: Beborn Beton (@)
Title: Tales From Another World (Best Of Beborn Beton)
Format: CD
Label: WTII Records (@)

This is actually a review based on the demo copy I received from WTII Records and not the full release. The demo has 7 tracks on it which are tracks 06, 01, 02, & 03 from Disc 1 and 05, 03, & 12 from Disc 2 in that order. I had not had the chance to hear Beborn Beton before but the name had passed by me once before last year sometime and I was very excited to finally get the chance to hear what the rave was about.
The first track "Life Is A Distance" begins with a slightly Voltaire like combination of strings and electronics but is very very smooth. The vocals are also very well performed and overall while this could be a darkpop song it is very catchy. However, the very next track "Another World" has become an instant all-time favorite of mine. This song has a very strong and very well produced Synthpop feel but with a darker edge to it. It's a very danceable track and the lyrics are nothing short of haunting and ring like the words of someone who has 'crossed over'. The lyrics begin something like: "There is no use in dying when still I seem to be undone. There is no use in trying to find again the love of someone. Why have I gone and come so far when I've been headed nowhere. I have been walking quite a while love, feeling lonesome." The chorus continues: "Don't you worry, they won't find my body. I want you to know I found peace in another world. Don't keep digging, I want you to leave back away from the place where my ashes are buried." And all of this set to dance music! Anyway, it reminded me of circumstances like that portrayed in the story of James Van Praagh which aired on TV awhile back in which he communicate with spirits. I've always found topics like this and movies like The Sixth Sense very interesting and putting a piece so nicely produced to great dance music with a bit of Synthpop and maybe even EBM influence is really great.
Every song on this little demo is simply awesome. "The Colour of Love" is like a more modernized version of New Wave with a harder edge to it but with all the European smoothness of Modern English. "Poison 2002" is more EBM influenced but with a solid song structure. I just can't get over this guy's voice not to mention the music. "Im Innern einer Frau" utilizes a more techno-ebm combination and it's all in German and I can't quite catch all of it as my German is 'nicht so gut' but the title roughly translates as "In the inside of a woman". There is also a synth effect they use on one of the backing vocals which is sort of buglike in the sense of the bugs in Nightmare Before Christmas when Oogie Boogie gets unravelled. There is a very cool remix of "Another World" by Apoptygma Berzerk which I think surpasses much of their own work. It's more dance/club oriented and less EBM but they created a harmony to the chorus track using effects on the vocals which is pretty amazing sounding and adds an interesting touch to the track. Lastly, there is "Peach" remixed by Cut Rate Box. This is a very dark sounding track but not without the strength of technology which all of Beborn Beton's work seems to have.
I think I found a new favorite! I can't wait to hear the full release of this album as well as more of Beborn Beton. If you are a fan of either Synthpop, EBM, or just good dance music this is an absolute MUST. I've had this demo for quite a long time now, about a month and half I think, debating whether I should write a review on this fragment of the release or not. It has barely left my CD player since. This fact alone has convinced me that I had to write this review because people simply NEED to know about Beborn Beton's music.
Aug 13 2002
Title: Hirnschlacht
Format: CD
Label: Black Rain (@)
Distributor: Triton
The new 9-track (+ video) cd from Feindflug, their fourth on Black Rain after two full lengths and a mini. The release was a bit delayed due to the luxurious "special ten site digipack" that nobody seemed able to print - I'm only reviewing the promo edition: "If somebody wants to sell you this CD, kill him... and take the CD!!!" states the cover, so you've been warned, eheh. Feindflug play an energetic and obsessive mix of electro-EBM and techno, most times very fast and repetitive and with a noisy edge. No vocals, just some samples here and there, so the emphasys is on pure rhythm. Not bad at all, and better than most electro due to its hyper-simplified, and more aggressive, approach, which must work really well live. The video consists of 3 screens, a bigger one on the left and two smaller ones on the right - the former is focused on gig shots, while the right section is mainly backstage plus some concert scenes. I don't know why the second screen on the right is just a filtered version of the one on the top; it's not that artistic looking and only distracts the attention... Feindflug live feature 3 people, electronics + guitar + live drums, but the odd thing is that "Roter Schnee" seems to be a studio track, and I really couldn't spot any acoustic drumming, just programmings and some guitar riffs. So there's a kind of gap between the visuals and the music, and besides that the gig scenes are a bit repetitive. So while a fan could be interested in seeing some concert shots, the video itself is really not that great.
Artist: The Chaos Engine (@)
Title: Escape Ferocity
Format: CD
Label: Wasp Factory Recordings (@)
First off, this album is better than their last release. I've been dreading doing this review because I don't know how I can be nice about some of what I have to say. However, there is something about The Chaos Engine that I have a hard time getting past. It's as if they are trying to be both pop and underground at the same time and thus becoming part of the very media garbage they seem to be against. With statements like "the only thing for sure is that each and every song will have more pop hooks than Britney Spears entire recorded output and yet still pack enough finely honed rage to give your parents nightmares for months" are such contradictions that one can only look at them as being as pretentious as Sigue Sigue Sputnik. With that being said "Me & My Army" really does sound like a pop song with a bit more aggressive electronics and guitars than would be the norm. They combine elements of Industrial, Techno, and Rock with pop-like hooks to create their main song structure. A bizarre combination indeed but one that I don't believe would ever entice true underground music fans. Maybe pop culture fans of bands like Korn, Stained, etc.. but not the industrial crowd. Sadly(?), they won't get the pop crowd either because of the heavy use of electronics. Basically they are a group that tries to be both Punk and Pop at the same time - like P.I.L.
Now, I said this album is better than the last and it is true that it is much easier to listen to but is not the sort of thing that would sit on my preferred listening shelf. However, anything that does not have an industrial-techno cover of the fucking "Barbie Girl" song has to be better than the last album! The bands singer has a voice which reminds me of Howard Jones, of whom I do like, mixed with elements of industrial and other electronic music plus sampled guitar hooks and songs like "Nerve Opera" are very listenable and not bad at all. It's the overall product of the band that grates my nerves. If some of the songs on this album were taken and put somewhere else not associated with the pretentiousness of The Chaos Engine and given another name then it would be a good product to sell and a decent album to listen to and people might actually get into it. Instead the combination and media statement made for promotional purposes on behalf of the project come off as nothing short of cheesy, pretentious, crap!
Maybe it's just me but the band simply needs a new image or they need to boost up the level of cheese and pretentiousness to make it very catty instead. Sigue Sigue Sputnik were at least interesting and they didn't play half as well as The Chaos Engine. This band comes off too much as hypocritical in my book but maybe I'm just not getting the joke somewhere. In order to pull off something like that you better sound damn great! I've tried to find the witty or humourous side to this band and I just can't find it. Maybe it's just a type of humour I don't get or maybe they really are seriously pretentious hypocritical twits!
Artist: Black Tape For A Blue Girl
Title: Scavenger Bride
Format: CD
Label: Projekt Records
Can we expect anything but brilliance from this group? I was wondering the effect that the marriage of Sam Rosenthal and Lisa Feuer would have on the band,given it's themes of isolation and love betrayed. It seems to have given a new strength and edge to the group rather than staying in the same course. While not the tour de force of "As One Aflame Laid Bare By Desire,",it is a force to be reckoned with, a guiding light for an often redundant ethereal scene. Elizabeth is the songbird of deepest winter, with a raw sensuality to her vocals that may well siren call you into the stereo. Sam's piano/synth lines flow over his elegant poetry, painting the lost heroine and her tragic tale like a pained sculptor of emotion. Lisa's flutes are like hearing the voice of a lost lover in your mind, filled to the brim with melancholy and crushing emotion at the same time.
My favorite is "Floats in the Updrafts" which is also the shortest. I could have standed for this to be alot longer. And a guest appearance from Spahn Ranch on this one?!The guys vocals are actually quite elegant.
Also I reccomend the aforementioned "As One Aflame", which is too powerful to even start describing. But where is our old buddy Oscar Herrara?!? Rating:10
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