Music Reviews



Artist: The Tunnel (@)
Title: Fathoms Deep
Format: 12"
Label: Glorious Alchemical
Rated: *****
It's difficult to nail down Fathoms Deep. It's definitely dark. It's dramatic. It's Goth, but it's not purely Goth or even dark wave. It's more. It's cool. Fathoms Deep is produced by the band, and they deliver a very good production and mix that is mostly sparse and raw, with slinky guitars and distorted bass, and is big exactly when it needs to be, never over-the-top.

Fathoms Deep opens with 'Wraithes,' a short, airy instrumental which gives way to the cool, slinky, guitar riff-driven, 'Strange Heaven' which is reminiscent of a garage-rock version of the Church with very dramatic, campy vocals. The band stays in garage-rock land with the uptempo 'King of the Impossible.' The track has a cool, late 60s vibe (thanks, mostly, to the farfisa-sounding organ), with vocals delivered with a David Johansen-like attitude. 'King of the Impossible' could also compare with very early tracks by The Damned. 'Fathomless Deep,' another dark, airy instrumental rounds out side one.

On side two the band kicks into story telling-mode delivering Nick Cave & Bad Seeds influenced rock opera drama. With less riffing, and more complex arrangements, 'The Beast-Catcher,' 'Scurvey Dreames' and "The Bitter End" focus more on the vocals and the story. On these tracks Wagner drops the Johansen-esque attitude and brings back the drama and camp we heard earlier on 'Strange Heaven.'

The band describes Fathoms Deep as a collection of 'Ragged, darkly romantic tales of lust and loss,' and the production delivers that. Fathoms Deep was reviewed on CD, but is only available as 12' vinyl and 320 kbps mp3 album.
Artist: Demonologists (@)
Title: Miscarriage of the Soul
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Crucial Blast (@)
Rated: *****
On first listen to Miscarriage of the Soul by Demonologists, I thought the disc was damaged. It sounded like something went wrong during the mastering process; like every track was clipping. I scanned though all the tracks and still that nasty sound persisted. Definitely damaged. Then I went over to the band's Myspace page and listened to the album's first track, Necro Prayers, and sure enough, it sounded the same. The disc wasn't damaged, this is indeed what the band intended the album to sound like -- 40 minutes of pure noise. The description given on the album's one-sheet, 'ominous black ambience veiled by corrosive hiss... a pure wall of hiss and static' is a perfect description of what Miscarriage of the Soul sounds like. Sometimes it even sounds like you're listening to a jet engine. If there are vocals, guitars, bass, percussion they are pretty much unintelligible for most the album. For about 35 minutes there really isn't a lot to hear other than hiss, static, and white noise. During those other 5 minutes, and peppered throughout the album, we are treated to something comprehensible in the form of dark and eery orchestrations, and tortured screams.

This is a very dense album that is not easy to listen to. This is definitely for fans of extreme death metal and noise. If you are a fan of the band, you'll love that Miscarriage of the Soul is an excellently packaged, hand-numbered, 250 copy limited edition CD in a DVD box that includes a very cool 28-page book, a vinyl sticker, a 1' badge.
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anymore
Artist: CAUTERISED
Title: Trifler Vs The 70s
Format: CD
Label: What A Carve Up! (@)
Rated: *****
TRIFLER VS THE 70S is the newest Cauterised album and it contains thirty minutes of samplerism and it sounds like a long blurring nightmare. Ian took many 70s sound sources and mixed them up, looped them adding reverb, slowed them down, etc. He took movies and tv samples and produced a sort of horrorish exotica soundtrack. Sometimes there are pieces of 70s hard rock coming to surface (some drum solos, for example) as well as orchestral jazz which sounds more 50s than else. The titles are descriptive and remember the ones of old soundtracks and sound like this: "Cleanliness Is Next To Godliness", "Lesson 1", "I Was A Teenage Piano Teacher", "Love Your Money", "Dracula", etc. If you love old B-movies and you're in vein of a bit of transversal approach to their culture you can check this album at cauterised.bandcamp.com. It is available in digital download and in CD-R with fabric sleeve.
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Artist: Terence Fixmer (@)
Title: Le Terrible EP
Format: 12"
Label: Electric Deluxe (@)
Distributor: wordandsound
Rated: *****
Another musical knick-knack coming from Electro Deluxe label is this intriguing EP signed by the notorious Terence Fixmer, a master in injecting that acoustic dose inducing cardiopalmus in the listener. It's very difficult that someone cannot act the part of an escaping prey running away from its pitiless hunter or alternatively the one of a hunter pursuing its dangerous quarry (or as the advertising clip seems to suggest the part of a sexy bomb disposal expert, employed for the defusing of a clocking time bomb), in particular for this kind of releases, consistantly different from Comedy of Menace (especially the second part), whereas Terence's style sounded a little bit smoother than before, maybe for seducing different kind of dancers (even if in my opinion he never felt this necessity). The title-track, Le Terrible, is what I really expected Terence Fixmer should keep on sounding, a series of cutting and clicking storms, able to immediately increase level of adrenaline in your dancing body, which is going to move like haunted by some voodoo necromancer on the catching dynamics. The first track on flipside, Concept C, has been marked by some of his fingerprints, in particular his distinctive distorted bass pulses and the hypnotical transmigration from one side to the other of the sonic space of percussive elements, but he prefers to build a sort of drone-like tunnel, unveiling a more experimental side. The remix of Dance Like Paranoid by Marcell Dettmann has been carefully built, especially the rhythmical pattern and the melody, but sounds nothing but a landslip of the original track. On the digital release, you will always find a more skeletal version of Le Terrible, including just the essential sound scapes (without percussive elements) intended for making easier the mixing during dj sets.
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Artist: Obtane, Giorgio Gigli, Tin Man (@)
Title: Analysis of a Nihilist Who Wants to Become Famous
Format: 12"
Label: Zooloft (@)
Distributor: Rubadub
Rated: *****
I'm pretty sure you could have arrived to this review for the magnetic attraction exerted by the title of this release. Well, it doesn't concern an essay of Kroker bros, a raving Discordianism sacred text or a philosophical libel by some post-modernist thinker or agit-prop, even if this release on the nice label Zooloft could be fitted for similar readings. I could certainly be influenced by the verbose titles as well as their foggy apocalyptic taxonomy, but the first musical term of comparison coming up to my mind is a possible one with Black Lung, the project of David Thrussel, as he coined similar titles to properly frame from the conceptual viewpoints his obscure rhythmical driving, inbued with dystopian "fictional" themes. The matter is that all the perceptions evoked by the tracks of this project signed by Obtane and Giorgio Gigli and featuring a track by the Austrian producer Tin Man are not so fictional nowadays. The first track entitled Social Distruction sounds to be the first nightmare of a nihilist who wants to become famous, picturing a society suffering from a sort of cannibalism whereas it prevails the sadistic pleasure to see other people's mishaps - even if the consideration according to which this is a peculiarity of our age could be criticised on the basis of the evidence, for instance, mishaps or bad luck has always been one of the columns of comedies since ancient times...maybe an evidence human genre is basically cruel... - and its obscure stepping over the ticking 12-minutes lasting with muted acid sounds and a sort of suffocated didgeridoo reminding parts of the weaponry of the mentioned sound-artist. Just turn the vynil on the other side to keep on feeding paranoid thoughts: the first track is the one assembled by Tin Man, a sort of slow motion dub-techno, which gradually insinuates while bringing the listener into a vortex of intimate thoughts wheras every beat could sound like a drop over the icy surface of the consistency of the most automatic side of the world we're living in. A disquieting bassline on a nervously mechanical set of sounds and what looks like beetles' droning or snakes' hissing prevails over the whole progress of the final appalling track, wisely entitled Individual Submission To The System, evoking the awareness about the dramatically unescapable swallowing of decadent fate. It could sound a little bit paranoid, but it cannot be but the result of the impression anyone had about our society, often suffocating what was known as human feeling.
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