Music Reviews



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Artist: Teen Anal Terrorist
Title: Warm Blatz For Teenage Runaways
Format: 12"
Label: Savage Quality Recordings (@)
Rated: *****
First off, the cover art is nice and lo-fi. This is always promising. And with a name like Teen Anal Terrorist, you know that this is not really a band that is going to take themselves too seriously (more evidence of this can be found in their Facebook contact phone number). Here's how the label described it: 'It's winter in the Midwest... you took a little too much Robitussin and you're stuck in the basement of a funeral home wondering if that coffin's taken. At least, them's the circumstances surrounding the recording of this epic vinyl debut from these twisted backwood cyberpunks. Damaged, dystopian industrial and alien funk reminiscint of Coil or Skinny Puppy.' Sounds promising, so let's get right into the music. We open side one with a glitchy track with a lot of random samples. They have a shout out to Peter 'Sleazy' Christopherson, so the Coil influence is front and center. From Coil's discography, this sounds most influenced by Love's Secret Domain. But there is also a touch of Negativland here, not only stylistically, but in the political sense. Solid. We flip the record over to Side 2, which is a bit more musical, for lack of a better term. Peaceful synth lilts over spastic beats and bits of noise, but still a good time. This is a fun album overall ' I'd love to see them perform live.
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Artist: Richard Pinhas
Title: Desolation Row
Format: CD
Label: Cuneiform Records (@)
Rated: *****
This monumental musical behemoth which translates an equally ginormous and frightening vision of the predictable mutation of liberalism into a centralized and tentacular teknofascist regime in Europe as a consequence of the deep economical crisis and its social and cultural perceivable consequences intersects both the cultural background - Richard took an active part in student uprising in 1968, when he was a young student at the Sorbonne under the philosopher Gilles Deleuze - and musical talent of Richard Pinhas. All those listeners who already know his remarkable penchant to fusion different sonic and stylistical languages (if you missed them, have a listen to Pinhas previous key releases such as the collaborative albums "Metal/Crystal" with Merzbow and Wolf Eyes and "Rhizome" with Merzbow or the astonishing "Metatron") as well as his work within his band Heldon cannot but enjoy the way he keeps on melting and moulding ores of prog-rock, metal, electronics, ambient, abstract, noise and jazzy elements into psychedelic, visionary and somehow significant sculpture, whose careful planing got assisted this time by a plenty of talented European musicians orbiting around the spheres of progressive rock, noise, jazz and improvisational music such as Oren Ambarchi, Noel Akchote, Etienne Jaumet, Lasse Marhaug, Eric Borelva and his son Duncan Nilsson, who fed three different line-ups. Guitar melodic lines over the six long-lasting tracks move toward breathtaking electronic drones, impetuous drum or analog-synth rides, unnerved clumps and parabolic ascensions, even if they sound ceaselessly throttled or suffocated by the whirlwinds of straining sonic ground-swll from other elements, whose dynamic pressure seems to gradually overwhelm even when the melodic line sounds more placid or audible like in "Circle", where guitars got gradually armoured while they got charged by surges of delayed signals and effects which gradually submerge the rhythmic pattern as well, or "Square", where load-bearing axis lays on Akchote's rock riff which got gradually fagged by a subtle tension which creeps into the melodic bushes of the song; they stretch and twist around parading slow drums, blowing winds festering screeches on "South"; they sound like screaming and corroding the robotic leviathan, which got evoked by the initial synth line of the opening track "North"; they finally blurs on the astonishing drones of "Moog", whose trippy clangors and electronic psychedelic ride will delight the eardrums of lovers of Frpp, Eno, Pink Floyd or Jarre, and the over-stretched stident layers of "Drone 1". "Desolution Row" could be a proper sonic translation of the individual see/feel in front of forthcoming happenings in Old Continent or maybe an inner stronghold, as someione could surmise from Pinhas' own words about this album: "music is a way to fight...and to bring weapons to people, to make them feel outside of their servitude, and perhaps to make them happy, even for one minute...a way to fight THE POWER!".
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: NXG0009EP
Format: 12"
Label: NexGen (@)
Rated: *****
Beads of seat and star dust scatter across this forthcoming ep from NexGen, which focuses on more jazzy-oriented stuff by means of this nice selection. The first of four tunes by Vienna-based producer Faible - recent member of NexGen big family - and Maracaibo-based talented drum'n'bass vocalist and songwriter Iriann Joyce - the first dnb singer in Venezuela - could immediately recall those aqueous loungy sonorities which used to be fashionable between the end of nineties and the beginning of the new millenium (I could mention Chateau Flight, Better Daze, Amba, Mark Pritchard, some tunes by Alex Gopher, Isolee or Jazzanova and so on), but "Northern Lights" got drenched by spicy fast-moving dnb engine. James Tan aka Clart, Liquid Drops label owner Chris Kouzellis aka mSdoS from Greece and Daniel "D.A." Clark on "Disco Inferno", whose fresh jazzy breeze keys to chilling atmospheres and fashion bar, and talented Kiev-based producer Pavel Kuzmin aka Physical Illusion and Alexander Vovnyakov aka Sunny Crimea on "Something About Love", whose relaxing extended piano tone and sensual female vocalizations pad an amazing sparkling percussive session, course similar stylistical plains, while Byelorussian musician Nikolay Sunak aka Reborn, who normally deals with a wide range of styles such as Detroit techno, Kraftwerkian electronics and post-sopviet science fiction sonorities, goes slightly out of the way of previous tracks by a funny subplot of chopped electronic beats and bleeping chimes.
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Artist: Uj Latasmod Fuzio (@)
Title: Fuzio Adventures
Format: 12"
Label: 4mg Records
Rated: *****
Gaspar Kornel is active since the late 80s but he founded his project Uj Latasmod Fuzio in 1992. Since then, he frequently self released tapes (the first lot are "Lelekjelenlet", "Meg kell tudnom (Fenyjelek)" and "Eltunt a Feny Tegnap") and CDs ("Latasmod es Technologia" in 1999, the compilation "Lelekjelenlet-kivonatok '92-97" and the MCD "Legyozzuk az idot" in 2002) and also participated to compilations ("Moire Gyermekei - 1992-2011" on Diobel, "Forward + Rewind: The Future Echo Tapes" on A+W, "Central Heating" on KHK Tapes and "Circuit D'Actes 3" on La Forme Lente). Now, the Slovakian label 4mgRecords is releasing the first Uj Latasmod Fuzio vinyl compilation album titled "Fuzio Adventures". The album contains fourteen tracks of what Gaspar calls "moody decadent casio-synthpunk, unpolished minimalist synth-pop, industrial-influenced cold wave and analogue electro things to a kind of absurd avant-garde kitschy cabaret". Characterised by Hungarian lyrics, minimal raw analog synth lines and Gaspar's baritone cold vocals, the tracks musically paint a dark scenario made of synth monophonic leads, sparse pad chords and robotic drum beats. Based on simple melodies and obsessive/hypnagogic atmospheres, the tracks are able to catch immediately the attention of fans of bands of the likes of Borghesia and Die Form or generally lovers of electronic dark wave. Limited to 275 copies, I'm sure you'll be glad to check this release and you'll be able to do so at this link http://ujlatasmodfuzio.bandcamp.com/album/uj-latasmod-fuzio-fuzio-adventures
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Artist: Martin Philip (@)
Title: Butler
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
I'm terribly late reviewing the newest Martin Philip release. I'm really sorry, but being a digital release and, for the first time, a free one, it kept being skipped after all the CDs I received (this is my policy: I can't review free releases, I'd be overwhelmed but since I reviewed other Martin's release I wanted to talk about this one, also). Anyway... "Butler" is a concept album where well crafted synthpop (perfect production and arrangements) meets an intriguing plot which talks about all the secrets, the expectations and the disillusion of a butler. Like on the previous Martin's album "Recumbent" also on "Butler" his guitar has a prominent place in the mix but as usual you'll find tons of melody and smooth atmospheres. Try to imagine that you're listening to a Pet Shop Boys album with no dance tunes and you'll have pretty much the idea of how this album sounds. In any case, here we don't have flaws: it's a very nice synthpop album, it has a intriguing story, it's for free and you can download wav files! Well done Steeves, you can say to Martin that you both reached your goal!
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