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Artist: Inner Vision Laboratory
Title: Perpetua
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
The new release of one of the most recognizable act of this polish label is centred about the idealistic concept of creation seen as a result of an idealistic culture instead of the recognition of a cycle of creation, stagnation and destruction.
"Slowly Dictating Supernovas" is a quiet and long ambient opener heavily relying on female samples while "The Bequest Of Originators" feature some sparse noises to color the dark soundscape. "Consciousness Of Clouds Colliding" is an atmospheric soundscape as "Lifethread". "Frozen Resonance", instead, relies on some dark, or ethereal, sample above the carefully constructed texture. "The Contracts Of Conflict" is based on spoken voices and a martial beat while "Forgetful Cosmos" tries to use the soundscape to escape from the solemnity of this musical structure. "The Chapters Of Ignorance" return on the dark soundscape of the beginning of this release while "A Paradigm Shift" marks the use of more bright sounds above the spoken words that develops the personal vision of this outfit. "Novel Delusion" close this records returning to the classical structure of this genre.
Probably this is not the best album of this moniker nor the most innovative but confirms the musical quality either of this outfit and of this label. Recommended but only to all dark ambient fans.
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Artist: Kid606 (@)
Title: LSDMTB303 EP
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Tigerbeat6 (@)
Rated: *****
A record by Kid606 without breaks or rhythmical cracks could be associated by many fans of the defiant sonic whims by Miguel Depedro to a flat-chested Barbie with big cellulite ass, limbs contorted by arthrosis, deep wrinkles, serious goitre, hiatus hernia and taken tothe cleaners by exorbitant fees from plastic surgeons and injunctions to pay from luxury car dealers, perfumeries and beauty centers (Damn it...I should avoid giving these ideas to toy factories!), but even though Miguel is no more a youngster, I shouldn't say this new stylistical course will collide with listener's expectations and thinking of Kid606 while playing melodies and microtextures on a 303 after knitting on a rocking chair in spite of first balding symptoms is definitively too untimely! On the contrary, all those who knows Kid606 releases will recognize his touch as well as a certain acid mocking irony since the very first steps of this EP, when a dim voice repeats the title "Everything Is Business...a shame" over a typical dubstep tune. The uncommon face of Kid606 comes out with dispatch over the following tracks: whereas tracks like "Love Me", "I Want Her Wings" or "Dark Archipelago" could recall to mind some easygoing synth-pop stuff based on simple warm melodies and sounds from some arcade or atari game (think about Ratatat remixed by AFX or any other Rephlex producer!), there's an authentic plunge in elderly sonorities and suggestions of primeval synth-electronica in tracks such as "Temporary Revelations" and "Hood Gone Mad" with its burden of collective imagination borrowed from movies or literature, but the most astonishing moment comes in "When Things Come Together" when these two aspects of Kid606's renowned sound have been merged together. This EP anticipates Kid606's forthcoming full length "Lost In The Game" and he cannot but choose a better way to make listener's mouth (or eardrums) water!
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Les Annees Folles
Format: 12"
Label: Enfant Terrible (@)
Rated: *****
"Les Annees Folles" is a new Enfant Terrible compilation which is the first release on their Gooiland Elektro sublabel. The 12" contains six tracks/bands that are active into the synthpop/electro wave scene and each of them give their personal interpretation of a genre which crossed three decades with bands that redefined the genre or paid tribute to the golden years of electronic music: the 80s. The compilation opens with Sololust, band that already had a 7" out on Enfant Terrible and that will have soon a new 12" released by the label. Their tune, "The Spark", is a nice synth wave mid tempo with hard beats and seducing atmospheres. Velvet Condom have already two albums on their back and are here with "The Stars Are Not Right", a convincing melodic synthpop tune with bouncing rhythms, vocoder inserts that duet with synth pads stabs. Gold Zebra are coming from Canada and released an EP a couple of years ago. With "Useless Night" they mix ebm sounds with nigth atmospheres and warm female vocals. Cute Heels feat. Devon Disaster with "Slave Toy" mix ebm and electro creating the right atmosphere for a kinky game. Tobias Bernstrup is here with and updated version of "Images Of Love", a track coming from his 1998 CDr. His synthpop always works great and this tune has many italo disco influences. I think that you already know Terminal Twilight and that you already checked their album "House Of Love". They sound like a mix of early New Order and Chromatics and "Too Late For Tears" is their tune that closes this nice compilation.
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Artist: Vladislav Delay (@)
Title: Espoo
Format: 12"
Label: Raster-Noton (@)
Rated: *****
We should count lucky that Sasu Ripatti didn't come up to his resolution to stop watering any solo laptop-driven project after the notable success within Moritz Von oswald Trio, so that after the issue of Vantaa on German label Raster-Noton, Sasu with his well-known moniker Vladislav Delay puts a new release of this series of sonic canvas inspired from and named after municipalities belonging to Huvudstadsregionen (Helsinki Metropolitan Area) into print. Whereas Sasu mainly binded a series of recordings from natural fields and techno-dub samples on Vantaa, his intricate textures sound more level-headed and rubbed down on this 2-track record, inspired by Espoo, one the most renowned technological and scientific centre in Europe, where VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Nokia, Tekla and other high-tech companies have their headquarters. Listeners will notice a certain specularity of the two halves of Espoo, just like Vladislav Delay traced a sort of Gaussian curve, as the first track, Olari (the central district of Espoo, known for having been one of fulcrums of almost unknown Finnish hip-hop scene), shows a gradual sonic saturation after a leisurely start based on looping sequence of a smooth electonic-dub sound, whose delicatee treatment is almost a badge of some Finnish dub-tinged stuff (just to make a comparison, have a listen to "Hard Like A Rock" by Nuspirit Helsinki) and the typical sound of an electric train makes when jumping on rails, while the B-side track "Kolari" (meaning "crash" in Finnish!) starts with an intense and persistent (like the knocking of a woodpecker) staccato beat and evolves with the gradual mutation and blurring of the underlying sound carpet, which gradually ferments without blanketing the main pulsation. Nice stuff.
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Artist: Burial Hex (@)
Title: Book Of Delusions
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring (@)
Rated: *****
Some people think that the noblest form of art descends from deep suffering and pain. I'm not 100% sure about such an axiom, but releases like this one by Clay Ruby aka Burial Hex can push me closer to that percentage. In spite of light aversion for esotheric references, I appreciate Clay's skills in giving a certain theatrical makeup and a vivid dramatic power to his music and he could boast about having established himself as one of the most talented producer of current industrial scene after the issue of "Book Of Delusions". It seems that this release comes after a very negative period, which compelled him to summon an unspecified ancient force of protection and vitality, and even if he put a curse on everyone who's going to listen "Book Of Delusions", so that there will be something, mischief afoot on their life, supposedly, I could defy risk just to appreciate his artefact. I really don't know why but the very first thought when listening the first torn shouts of the initial "Final Litany" recalled to my mind the deliriums of "A Season in Hell" by Rimbaud, while resounding thuds, sinister squeaks and disquieting clicking of the following track "Urlicht" seems to evoke the desperate call for help of the homonymous German folk song, which slides little by little into the frightening "Crowned & Conquering Child", a clear reference to some beliefs of Crowley's Thelema as the title is one of the epithet of Horus or Ra-Hoor-Kuit, a ritual song whose electronic ebullience has been forged by Nathaniel Ritter where it seems a sacrificial prayer benefits from a chat with the deity while experiencing agonizing tribulation - vocal performance is so impressive that it seems that it was recorded during an ablution in a pool full of hot oil -.

During 15-minutes lasting listening of the title track, based on the hypnotic crossbreed of techno pushing beat, guitar gashes and punchy cuts, whose fierce heat reminded some tracks by Psychic Warriors Ov Gaia or even Underworld, some words of the homonymous book by legendary Romanian writer Emil Cioran could be the most suitable way to describe it: "The dramatic moment of the individual existence culminates always in the struggle with time. This struggle, however, is without escape, because the being touched by temporality, once having conquered eternity, inevitably regrets time. The desire to flee from time is found only in people ill with time, people who are tied too strongly by the bonds of fleeting moments. Redemption is such an inconsistent aspiration because of the regret experienced by those who are after the joys, surprises, and tragedies that the world, which lives and dies in the meanwhile, has to offer. If there is a temporal pressure, there is also, none the smaller, an infinity pressure.". The absorbing damned piano stroking keep the tension up while the same devilish voice which dubbed Horus in the above-mentioned track recite "Indra (God of Storm and Battle)" by Gustav Holst, whose "Vedic Hymns" have been reprised in the following track, "Storm Clouds" (my favorite one), where heartbreaking anguished cries on a moving piano looping melody and Troy Schafer's suspensive violin are going to rise listener's emotional pathos, as well as in the following "Go Crystal Tears", orignally included in his previously release with Zola Jesus together with the final track "Temple Of The Flood", based on a song by John Dowland, a meaningful entreaty against some woman's indurate heart, "whose frozen rigour like forgetful Death / Feels never any touch of my desert:/ Yet sighs and tears to her I sacrifice,/Both from a spotless heart and patient eyes", whose genuine interpretation by Clay Ruby is really astonishing.
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