Music Reviews



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Artist: India Czajkowska & Sebastian Madejski
Title: Tańce Snu
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
This release from the duo of India Czajkowska and Sebastian Madejski is based upon early instruments (viola de gamba, psaÅterium) flute, piano, synthesizer, guitars and two voices. So it's showing his legacy with the works by Dead Can Dance or Ataraxia and is focused on the form rather than the innovation of the genre. However there's an almost pop attitude that seldom is able to give a personality to this release.
The quiet and solemn atmosphere of 'Entoihen' introduces the listener in a sonic journey where the song form is not a synonym for pop music. 'Natres' shows the impressive voices of this artists while 'Mirtey truti' features a musical lines that follows the vocal ones. 'Kan di kam', with his rhythmic evolution, is hypnotic while 'Eigis' is a vocal introduction to 'Sirhe noria', the longest track of this release, where cello and synth creates an almost religious background to the voices. 'Neritiese' is a lied for piano and voices while 'Naya trea ne' is hypnotic with his use of harpsichord. 'Hosenais' is a catchy pop :) tunes for glockenspiel and voices and 'Selionei' is an ethereal track focus on India's voice as 'Ane kaliman' that closes this release.
Even if it shows perhaps a too evident legacy with their influence, the form is so well developed that marks this project as something to hear in their next releases. Not only for fans of the genre.
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Artist: Rapoon & Promute
Title: Machine river
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
This new release by Robin Storey is a collaboration with Shaun Sandor and is described as something that 'generated notions of timelessness and seductive landscapes'. Even if the base was done by Promute, the Rapoon manipulation is something so personal to develop something in the tradition of this project with his focus on meditative and hypnotic moods.
The oriental mood of 'the calling flood' is something that recalls the well known best pages of Robin Storey and, with 'the edge of rain', there's also the return of the percussions and a sitar to enhance the hypnotic properties. This instrument is also the basis for 'the calling deep' that acts as an introduction to 'touch transparent' focused on voices and filters. 'A breath on glass' is based on the resonances of the sitar while 'words on tin' is developed as an ambient track. The last two track is the longer ones and, so, are the most representative: 'the calling river' is a quiet and meditative tracks where all the resonances of the instruments used in the previous track emerges and a piano in the last part evokes a sort of nostalgia. 'Smoke temple' closes this release with a bright drone colored by smart inserts of samples and resonances.
Sounds as a return to a classic form for this artist and is something that could sound as boring or conservative but the charm of this form is timeless. Recommended for fans.
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Artist: The Danse Society
Title: If I were Jesus/ Sound of Silence
Format: 7"
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
"If I were Jesus" is the newest double A side single from The Danse Society. It's quite a long time that Maethelyiah is the new singer and she and Paul at the moment are the stablest band members since the 2011 reformation. I've reviewed their two albums and "If I were Jesus"/"Sound Of Silence" is an appetizer of what is coming. The main song is a perfect tune for this period as it's a critic to the commercial X-mas. I'm not saying that Maeth turned catholic, because as far as I know by reading what she writes she's pagan, so the meaning of the lyrics are an exhortation to people to change their habitude and to connect themselves to their human side. Musically the song alternates tense ambiences where Maeth is in front, to sound explosions where Paul's guitar roars and the drums sound like a blast. "Sound Of Silence" is on the other side and it's a tough of a cover to play, because the atmosphere is everything. In this case, The Danse Society opted for a mid tempo in balance from goth and rock which mix the right dose of despair and energy. The single will be available as limited violet 7" around February 2015 but you can purchase it right now and getting the digital files in the meantime.
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Artist: 3Teeth
Title: s/t
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Label: Artoffact Records
Rated: *****
3teeth is a strange band from L.A. At first, they seem to play an interesting mixture of both industrial metal a la Rammstein and some more classic sounds like Skinny Puppy or Front242. But this attitude towards classic industrial acts is mixed and integrated with mystic arrangements, samples, atmospheres and vocals. This mystical part of the album reminds me Aesthetic Meat Front. The result is amazing. The vocals should be mentioned first: the guy is pretty good in providing modulations, reverb and the like, but he is also pretty good in changing the style of singing according to the effect. Spoken worlds, screaming and similar stuff. Paradigmatic of vocalist's skills are 'Master of Decay' and 'Chasm'. 3teeth usually structure their songs around a quite martial drum and a nice line of bass. Next some essential metal-like guitars are added and, within this slow march, vocals play their role. Best example of this type of march is 'Pearls 2 swine'. Toward the end of the album songs become faster, like 'Eradicate' or 'X-day'. The final song ('Too far gone') closes the album with some strange dreamy atmosphere. Overall the album is awesome, also because it is the debut album as far as I understood. Therefore there is ample room for improvement. Highly recommended.
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Artist: Rona Geffen (@)
Title: Bilono
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: RGunlimited
Distributor: Stars & Heroes
Rated: *****
'Bilono' is the controversial debut album from Israeli producer/ singer Rona Geffen and has been described by the artist as 'the sound of day and night life in Tel-Aviv ' from its harsh politics, bombs, fire, useless loss of lives to that constant dripping of the neighbour's air-conditioner.' Aside from this, Rona has also released an electronic opera called 'Strike- No sex in the TL Village' as well as writing 'Wetting Party' for a group of Berlin based Choreographers. The record is driven by a strong pulsating tone of heavily distorted drums, dark bass lines and industrial influenced synth leads hybridised with a heavy Middle Eastern influenced sound, often incorporating classical instruments such as a clarinet on 'Hol Ba'eynayim' and strings heavily featuring on the second half of the album. The overall sound of this album ranges from the mysterious on 'Bitches' to the more uplifting and epic on 'East West', to the cataclysmic, disgusting wall of noise and the solemn following it on 'Requiem'. Vocals are often emotional, raw and heavily distorted, lyrics often divulging in topics such as sexuality and relationships. Though to be frankly honest, the lyrics (those of which I understand as some tracks are sung entirely in Hebrew) aren't Rona Geffen's strong point, more amateurish than transcendent, I found her songs exploring female sexuality contrived and uncomfortable to listen, does she shock the listener? Yes. Are her lyrics and vocals original? Yes. But is it enjoyable to listen to? No, not at all. Half of the tracks on this album are entirely instrumental and I feel this is where Ms. Geffen's talents truly lie. Instrumental tracks showed far more promise than those containing vocals, her musical arrangement in the more hybridised tracks was exceptional and were thoroughly enjoyable. The entirely electro driven tracks were also promising but eventually became repetitive and lost momentum. My favourite track on the album would be 'Requiem part 2' after the noisey, implosion on part 1, this piece is so well crafted, so beautifully arranged and conveys an overwhelming sense solemn. Bilono is released on the 15th of December on RGunlimited.
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