Music Reviews



image not
available
anymore
Artist: Style Sindrome
Title: Style Sindrome
Format: 12"
Label: Synthetic Shadows Records
Rated: *****
Active on early 80s in Rome, Italy, Style Sindrome was formed by Anna and Stefano, both coming from TM Spa, a rock band that won the first Italian Rock Festival in 1980 and Giorgio, who played with Electroshock, a well known Italian rock band active in the late '70s. The line-up found its final set up when Massimo and Raimondo joined. Deeply influenced by post punk and early new wave (of the likes of Joy Division, The Cure and Siouxsie & The Banshees), the band recorded only two demo tapes (the song "Waving In The Dark", coming from the second one, was also included into the compilation produced by the magazine Rockerilla titled "Gathered"). They also participated to a national television show called Mister Fantasy with a video produced by the show itself. For whom may be unaware of that show, it was a sort of experiment lasted from 1981 until 1984 born from an idea of Paolo Giaccio and hosted by Carlo Massarini. It was the first show based on video clips but they also documented different Italian local scenes (Pordenone's The Great Complotto it's the one I remember the most) and produced many italian bands and artists' videos. After thirty years Synthetic Shadows succeeded into getting a copy of the seven songs of the two demos which seemed to be lost forever. Side A contains "Thinking About", "We Two" and "Pressing Desire". The influences of bands like Siouxsie & The Banshees are mostly evident on Stefania's vocal style because musically they had refined arrangements where sax inserts and intricate guitar parts where the main elements and the atmosphere was sensual and dark at the same time. Side B contains "Waving In The Dark", "Shining", "To Stretch" and "A Mysterious design". The songs are mixing new wave upbeat rhythms to almost funky guitar riffs, new wave arpeggios and sax solos. They succeeded into personalizing a sound that revolutionize the alternative musical scene over the world on that period, if you think that on those years Siouxsie & The Bansheed released "Juju" and "A Kiss In The Dreamhouse", The Cure released "Faith" and "Pornography" and Factory just issued the posthumous Joy Division's record "Still".
cover
Artist: VV.AA.
Title: RE(C)QUIEM
Format: CD
Label: SantoS Productions (@)
Rated: *****
The small Italian label Santos Productions by Davide Fernia manages to erect a monumental sonic mausoleum dedicated to big names of history, politics or culture, whose lives are somewhat memorable whether right or wrong, by involving some of the most renowned (mainly) Italian representatives and explorers of grey interzone, who offer an impressive collection of various facets of this obscure and unconventional scene, whose stylistical ground lies on tape and noise art, post-industrial, electronic experiments, dark ambient, neo-folk, ritual ambient as well as on a fertile humus of occult subjects, paganism, underground cultures, futurism, political activism and so on. This 17-tracks compilation of "requiems" opens with "Le 516 volte di Giovanni" ("The 516 times by Giovanni") by Massimo Olla's project Noisedelik, whose sinister rasps on guitar strings, noises of chains, grinding blades, metallic objects and coughs which seem to come from filthy wet prison cells become more and more claustrophobic and obsessive like the imminent execution by the hands of the character whom this track refers, Giovanni Battista Bugatti, commonly known as Mastro Titta, the cruel official executioner for the Papal States in the first half of XIX century, who carried out 516 executions. That's a sticking way to start this commemoration, which carries on with memorable memorials. All tracks include proper sonic hints and quotes by the personalities they referred to so that it's almost impossible to state an "order of preference" as well as a dissertation about each memorial could be excessively rambling. Anyway there are some tracks which struck me more, but such a list cannot be considered thorough at all: ofr instance I found particularly catchy the treatment LCHM and KHEM reserved on "Neo Mondo" to a reading by Pier Paolo Pasolini of some excerpts from Ezra Pound's "The Pisan Cantos" with the quotation of the known verse "What thou lovest well remains, / the rest is dross", the psychotropic evocation Simon Balestrazzi offers on "The Airtight Garage of Jean Giraud (Requiem for Moebius)", the guessed industrial anxiety on "Crunch/Grind Mechanism" by Automageddon in order to remember the controversial General Ludd, the memory glimpses of some literary climax by Danilo Kis while listening to the tribute by Maurizio Bianchi, Stefano Gentile and Gianluca Favaron, the touching dark folk song dedicated to Ota Benga by TSIDMZ and Rose Rovine e Amanti, the synaesthetic sonic remembrance of the brave deeds by Ukrainian anarcho-communist revolutionary Nestor Makhno on "Tacianka Armata" by Brigata Stirner, the scary abrasions by Uncodified for his homage/memorial to Italian witty film director Lucio Fulci or the ripping dedication by meand of headbanging reading within a storm of noises to the innovative aesthaetics of Japanese writer Yukio Mishima by The Streetcleaner and Troy Southgate, but I cannot but reaffirm such a list doesn't justice to other sound artists, who gave their precious contribution to the general impressiveness of the project.
cover
Artist: Bionulor (@)
Title: Erik
Format: CD
Label: Requiem (@)
Rated: *****
I've already listened to several interpretations and reworks of Gymnopedies by legendary and mysterious composer Erik Satie, whose most notorious composition has been regarded as the most remarkable precursor of the so-called ambient music due to the ambiguity coming from the melodic structure, based on the astonishing reversed complementarity between harmony and calculated dissonances, but it's quite rare a derivative release managed to mirror the emotional contrails which could be triggered by its listening. Czestochowa-based composer Sebastian Banaszczyk aka Bionulor seems to be so intimate with that forerunning oeuvre that he decided to entitle this collection of sonic eclairs by borrowing the name of the French pianist and composer, just as if he were one of his closest friend. Bionulor applied that processing method he called "100% sound recycling" he already successfully tested in his previous two albums - whereas his self-titled debut focused on previously recorded music of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, he mainly molded human voice on its second album "Sacred Mushroom Chant" - to Gymnopedies by juxtaposing a wide range of filters and settings: the notorious alternation of the subdominant G and the tonic D tones of the first of the three piano compositions often recurs over the album, but it got dipped into many sonic solutions. For instance on the initial "ST.001", it seems evoked by a mnemonic glimpse due to the loop of a vinyl crackle, which sounds emphasized on the following ST.002 together with the dirty sound of torn speakers or of a rusty grammophone, before feeding the sparking of the hypnotic ticking pulses on "ST.003". Sometimes slices of the score looks like turning into a sort of coding for otherwise unintelligible dimension or weird entities: "ST.008" sounds like the accompaniment to the graceful movements of a ghost, while "ST.007" and "ST.004" could respectively be peddled as the extracts from an imaginative edition for goblins and spaceships;"ST.009" or "ST.013" could be the way Gymnopedies could be "remixed" by the consciousness of some assistant of Dr.Lily after the first trial of some isolation tank, the reversed play on swarming chirps and puffing sonic sutures on "ST.010" could let some listener surmise it came from some old tape, which Bionulor found in Silesian forests. Those tracks where it seems Gymnopedies arise like glares, lightning bugs or will-o'-the-wispsin the night are pure nostrum for imagination, while the final "ST.015" could sound like a possible Gymnopedie-inspired reverie by Nobukazu Takemura. "Erik" has been wisely mastered by Taylor Deupree.
image not
available
anymore
Artist: Transfer (@)
Title: Øe
Format: CD
Label: Murmur (@)
Rated: *****
According to the linear notes this release is inspired by "the numerical representation of life and the sensorial stimulation, achieved by combining data into binary format, replaces human primordial needs [..] Transfer is a sonic reflection about all affective phenomena which come out by the use of digital interfaces". Honestly, it's true that digital sharing and recording of things is an important part of our life but, instead of similar (in intention) works ad Ikeda's "data.matrix" where musical output is indivisible from the artwork from his comprehension, musically speaking this album is a filtered drone oriented release similar to the last outputs from Stephan Mathieu as it share the same research for dreamy soundscapes.
"February - Seek" opens this release with a gentle drone slowly evolving and colored by subtle small noises. "Seadawn - .Ksd" is based evocative samples above the carefully constructed soundscape featuring also an orchestral initial tuning. The first minutes of "Sad - Jitter" are constructed with noises until the drone fill the musical infrastructure. "Hatsuyuki - D Quant", the longest track of this release, is constructed upon four drones that sequentially enter the canvas until the last slowly ends.
This release doesn't follow any new territories but it's carefully written and produced that it will be enjoyed by all fans of this kind of musical research. Recommanded.
image not
available
anymore
Artist: Different State
Title: The Frigid Condition
Format: CD
Label: Zoharum (@)
Rated: *****
This new release from Marek Marchoff is a mixture of illbient, industrial and psychedelia that is an end of the year surprise for this label more oriented in dark ambient territories. This is a two face musical offer as it features the repetitive mood of illbient and the search for variety of psychedelia and, so, it's sometimes out of focus but it search the listener attention.
"Done" opens this release with a old vinyl recording that quickly develop in a guitar loop above some sparse noises. "Consciousness" is an hypnotic tune with an oriental flavor given by the samples and the guitar tuning. "Salvatore Fabio" is the first track of this album featuring a vocal line. "Conspiracy in the Mirror" is a long instrumental tune featuring also a sax line. "Love" feature a female vocal line that gives variety to the underlying musical structure that is the same for the tracks with minimal variations. So, "Intuition" and "Spiritual Potential" are variations above the same lines. "Cold" returns to the instrumental paths of the beginning of the album featuring and evocative soundscape below the guitar line while "Spirit" is another vocal driven track and "Disastral / Hidden Composition" and almost dark ambient exercise.
This album features some tracks longer than necessary however it's a release enjoyable for everyone.
[ Next ] [ Previous ]

[1...10] [11...20] [21...30] [31...40] [41...50] [51...60] [61...70] [71...80] [81...90] [91...100] [101...110] [111...120] [121...130] [131...140] [141...150] [151...160] [161...170] [171...180] [181...190] [191...200] [201...210] [211...220] [221...230] [231...240] [241...250] [251...260] [261...270] [271...280] [281...290] [291...300] [301...310] [311...320] [321...330] [331...340] [341...350] [351...360] [361...370] [371...380] [381...390] [391...400] [401...410] [411...420] [421...430] [431...440] [441...450] [451...460] [461...470] [471...480] [481...490] [491...500] [501...510] [511...520] [521...530] [531...540] [541...550] [551...560] [561...570] [571...580] [581...590] [591...600] [601...610] [611...620] [621...630] [631...640] [641...650] [651...660] [661...670] [671...680] [681...690] [691...700] [701...710] [711...720] [721] [722] [723] [724] [725] [726] [727] [728] [729] [730] [731...740] [741...750] [751...760] [761...770] [771...780] [781...790] [791...800] [801...810] [811...820] [821...830] [831...840] [841...850] [851...860] [861...870] [871...880] [881...890] [891...900] [901...910] [911...920] [921...930] [931...940] [941...950] [951...960] [961...970] [971...980] [981...990] [991...1000] [1001...1010] [1011...1020] [1021...1030] [1031...1040] [1041...1050] [1051...1060] [1061...1070] [1071...1080] [1081...1090] [1091...1100] [1101...1110] [1111...1120] [1121...1130] [1131...1140] [1141...1150] [1151...1160] [1161...1170] [1171...1180] [1181...1190] [1191...1200] [1201...1210] [1211...1220] [1221...1230] [1231...1240] [1241...1250] [1251...1260] [1261...1270] [1271...1280] [1281...1290] [1291...1300] [1301...1310] [1311...1320] [1321...1330] [1331...1340] [1341...1350] [1351...1360] [1361...1370] [1371...1380] [1381...1390] [1391...1400] [1401...1410] [1411...1420] [1421...1430] [1431...1440] [1441...1450] [1451...1460] [1461...1470] [1471...1480] [1481...1490] [1491...1500] [1501...1510] [1511...1520] [1521...1530] [1531...1540] [1541...1550] [1551...1560] [1561...1570] [1571...1580] [1581...1590] [1591...1600] [1601...1610] [1611...1620] [1621...1630] [1631...1640] [1641...1650] [1651...1660] [1661...1670] [1671...1680] [1681...1690] [1691...1700] [1701...1710] [1711...1720] [1721...1730] [1731...1740] [1741...1750] [1751...1760] [1761...1770] [1771...1780] [1781...1790] [1791...1800] [1801...1810] [1811...1820] [1821...1830] [1831...1840] [1841...1850] [1851...1860] [1861...1870] [1871...1880] [1881...1890] [1891...1900] [1901...1910] [1911...1920] [1921...1930] [1931...1940] [1941...1950] [1951...1960] [1961...1970] [1971...1980] [1981...1990] [1991...2000] [2001...2010] [2011...2020] [2021...2030] [2031...2040] [2041...2050] [2051...2060] [2061...2070] [2071...2080] [2081...2090] [2091...2100]


Search All Reviews:
[ Advanced Search ]

Chain D.L.K. design by Marc Urselli
Suffusion WordPress theme by Sayontan Sinha