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Artist: Distel (@)
Title: Puur
Format: 12"
Label: Enfant Terrible
Rated: *****
Three years ago Distel released, always for Enfant Terrible, their first 7" containing two songs. Now, three years after and after a couple of tracks released on some compilations, they bring to the attention of industrial electronic lovers their first album titled "Puur". The release contains ten new tracks and it will have a second edition out in May which will come along with an extra two tracks 7", as this first one is limited to only 50 copies! Back to the album, I can say that it totally confirm the good impression I had with their single: it sounds powerful, desperate, sometimes melodic and well arranged. It sounds rich and cold at the same time thanks to the warmth of synth sounds and to the way the noises have been used. Music wise, listening to songs like "Hale" I recalled the early Coil, "Amne", instead, sounds like Depeche Mode covering early Cabaret Voltaire. Electro, industrial and cold wave are all mixed creating a fresh take on... despair. Check the sound excerpts at the label's website and I assure you that you'll reserve a copy of this one!
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Artist: Adern X & Tiziano Milani (@)
Title: Cinema Show
Format: CD
Label: Xevor Records
Rated: *****
The last time I reviewed Adern X, it was about the release "Ink spots called words", a collection of tracks recorded during the 2007/2012 time span. With "Cinema Show", Andrea Piran, is back with a new album recorded in collaboration with a well known sound tweaker called Tiziano Milani. The concept behind this album deals with the dependence of images and sounds on a movie and the way to enjoy it in different environments. They recorded their sound sources at the movies and then edited it to make it sound, as they say, like a "soundtrack of an imaginary expressionist movie or as an experimental form of synphonic poem". The release is divided into five different movements where noises we are kinda used to, morph into a disturbing sound collage that sometimes turn into a dreamy reversed orchestra, then into a pulsating signal from a distant galaxy and then into a cacophonic wall that melts into tiny melodies now and then. This isn't exactly my cup of tea but I appreciated the feeling and the concept of the release and I think that this is what these sounds were made for...
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Artist: Chris Octane (@)
Title: Synthetics/Gaia's Dub
Format: 12"
Label: CO:RE (@)
Rated: *****
After the widely acclaimed release "Method In The Madness" together with DLR, Chris Octane undertakes a personal route by launching his own imprint CO:RE and dropping the first self-signed release, which doesn't sound just like a persuading proof of concept, but a sort of spiritual groundwork as well. The first track "Synthetics" unrolls both amazing beats, crackling drums, an effected buzzing electric guitar, cryptically vanishing melodies, which chorally sounds like cogs of a wheel in perpetual motion and a voice which enunciates a pensive reflection about the mutated perspective of an artificial reality, which invites listeners to think about the role of synthesis in the perception of surrounding and often encapsulated world. Such a reflection on "artificiality" looks like the mirror image of the spinned thoughts by the following "Gaia's Dub", a possible decryption of a raped Mother Nature, whose unpredictable burst, eruptions and sizzles could be likewise considered as cogs of a self-regulating machine, whose response is commensurate with any different attempt of awkward sabotage. Chris' work on mid frequencies and reverbs are really compelling and succeeds in masking the layered structure of both tracks.
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Artist: Gerwin (@)
Title: Against The Clock/See Thru My Eyes
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: IM:Ltd (@)
Distributor: Triple Vision
Rated: *****
One of the top scorers of renowned hyperkinetic French dnb label IM:Ltd, Bordeaux-based dj and producer Gerwin, outdoes himself by signing another great release, which is arguably his cutting-edge at the moment together with the collaborative track "Lying Portraits". The atmospheric introduction, lying on trembling suspenseful sonorities, ends with a sharpened sine wave, which often recurs on this ideal fight against time on "Against the Clock" and ignites an engaging breakbeat-oriented stride, which got strengthened by a minblowing ultra-low-pitched sub-bass, metallic suctions, stretched clicks and a vocal sample, which will make you think about the strain of such a tiring struggle. On the flipside, "See Thru My Eyes" sounds equally winsome by means of hypnotical sliding bass tones, vocal fragments, cavernous effects, slamming hits and temporary "exotic" intervals, but it seems that Gerwin preferred to emphasize the cinematic aspect, which could you let think about the fighter of the previous track, who ask his imaginary opponent or maybe the listener to inspect his soul thereupon he absorbed all shocks of last-gasp fight. Did he win? Who knows! In the meanwhile, just enjoy this contagious last ditch effort. This release is just digital at the moment, but I could surmise that vinyl will follow.
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Artist: Lord Tang (@)
Title: s/t
Format: 12"
Label: Alarm (@)
Rated: *****
This self-named debut release by Lord Tang, the recent brainchild from Dominic Cramp's recording studio, jacks in vintage sonic equipment, which he uses to squeeze some juicy arrangments whose aftertaste recalls old glorious dub stuff as well as some electronic declension, and some elements (pleated and singed sonorities, obscure electronic entities, seemingly aimless vocal interferences of paranoid ramblings and field recordings), which could be clasped to Cramp's other projects (in particular Borful Tang) and similar sonic mounts, which combine a taste for modern compositional strategies and aged hooks (Digital Mystikz, Zomby, Demlike Stare), but Lord Tang hushes samples up and prefers to grate delicious melodic lines from old synths and catchy rhythmic pattern from drum machines. After the initial shining "Fog", he jogs on reversed groove by the caustic "Defections", drags shell-shock atmospheres, which could resemble some stuff by Future Sound of London, towards gluey jellied sludge on "Thang" - one of my favorite track -, fries ping pong balls into boiling soup of dub pieces of meat, sinisterly gnashes claps and bleeps on the dour "Friends" (featuring Gollum on mic?), frothes narcotic suds on "Slumberer", injects entrancing organ-driven tearing melodies in the veins on the beautiful "My Dub Uncle" - another highlight of this release - before suppurating pure dub nostalgia and plangently warm heavyweight bass in order to propel mental spacewalks as a good strategy to dissolve physical and spiritual restrictions of "real" world on the final "Smalls". That's a good release to remove muck-up out of dubster's ears.
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