Music Reviews



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Artist: Raoul Sinier (@)
Title: Tremens Industry
Format: CD + DVD
Label: Ad Noiseam
Rated: *****
The intriguing creative and operational skills of the Parisian digital painter and electronic musician Raoul Sinier have been already disclosed when Ad Noiseam decided to issue its very first release with his real name (and not by using his moniker Ra), Huge Samurai Radish '“ if you miss the "radish-o-phobic" nice clip, you'll find it in the nice DVD attached to this oeuvre - in 2007, whose sinister noises, crackling beats and static melodies colliding with multicolored poisoned baits of grating crunched sounds could just be considered as a sort of sonic manifestation of its painting attitudes. Tremens Industry, the logical link of the heavy chain crafted through its previous releases (as the listener's going to experience something similar to a sort of hybridization between the crunched hip hop crumbles dropped in Wxfdswxc2 and the stormy corrugated meatballs of sounds cooked in Brain Kitchen), is the best occasion to appreciate both sides of this contemporary craftsman, whose experiments with video and audio-clips could be considered complementary as well.

From the musical viewpoint, the fearful Tremens Industry (a sort of allegorical transliteration of a fervid and tireless creative mind getting wicked after a prolonged operative session?!?! A monstrous mutation that could be perfect to describe the freaky figments of Sinier's imagination!!!) looks more accessible than his past works, maybe for the presence of some songs (such as The Hole '“ we like the bizarre wit of its lyrics... watch related clips on the DVD for a visual transposition, folks!!! -, the rough metallic alloying of Elle A Raison, the lovely Boxes '“ one of my favorite "French-touched" tracks... - and List Of Things '“ a more hip-hop oriented tune reminding to us the golden era of Funkstorung-like electronic moistures on the classic hopping rhythmical pattern), composed mainly by vocal "clutches" on catching drum patterns and melodic lines derived from its self-made guitar (a specific video documentary among the extras will explain how to build a similar one step-by-step!!!), alternated with cool electronic pieces and some charming tracks in a unique coherent composition, introduced by the estranged effect induced by Overthoughts, a track which seems to be built on the typical electronic jingles used for broadcasted TV news '“ we like this kind of ironic insertions! -. Even if some episodes look slightly creepy and gritty '“ a dark recipe which doesn't harm its stylish formula... could you tell Burton's characters will preserve their attraction if deprived of their gothic appeal for instance? -, we'll glad to rediscover Sinier's crease-proof "playfulness" is the same as ever.

The second part of Tremens Industry (the visual one) consists of a DVD (with English & German subtitles)crammed by cartoons, 3d animations and some cool portraits grabbed from Sinier's "reality" among which I enjoyed the frightening La Peau du Soldat (translation: The Soldier's Skin) and its funny psychotic narration featuring some mute characters which seem to be just some multiplied identities of the narrator. Shorts, freaks, animations, eccentric characters (after the above-mentioned army of violent radishes, the dramatic funny gastronomic saga of food prompted by evil intentions is going to keep on throughout a troublesome chicken's breast... a really daily torment indeed!!! ) will surely entertain you and supposedly you'll be delighted by Sinier's attempt to involve the beneficiary of this release in its creative universe by including an how-to about his self-made guitar and some cool samples of speed painting powered by his MAC... don't call it just IDM ( ... and don't forget to call the cruel robot from the second videoclip index!!!)!
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Artist: AIDAN CASSERLY
Title: White Soul
Format: CD
Label: Ninthwave Records
Rated: *****
Martin Gore sings "Let me see you stripped down to the bone" to a real or imaginative lover into Depeche Mode's "Stripped", Empire State Human's singer Aidan Casserly applied this concept to one of his loved ones... his music. The same happened to great singers such as Marc Almond that after his experience with synthpop in Soft Cell needed to embrace other kind of sounds and recorded albums such as "Jacques" or "Absinthe". Aidan isn't leaving Empire State Human but he needed to do a different experience and needed to test himself as singer. WHITE SOUL contains ten tracks which span through different musical genres: the opening "Saviour" is an acoustic guitar/vocal song with romantic but not mellow melodies, "Born bruised is a r'n'r tune and after we have "Torture me", the first of the beautiful piano ballads that will convince you since the first listening. There's also a jazzy tune, "Smoke before the fire" followed by an upbeat acoustic guitar/vocals tune titled "We all cry inside". "You broke my heart (with love)" is another heartbreaking piano ballad followed by another great one "Mimi and Coco" where piano, guitar and vocals blend perfectly making of this one one of the best of the lot. "Dead man's blues" is a particular slow blues song with acoustic guitar and punching drums. The instruments used are classic rock instruments but the melodies could sound great on a synthpop song. "Weeds and curls" see acoustic guitar duetting with synth strings with Aidan's voice that makes the difference if you think that we have such few musical elements. The album is closed by a piano ballad titled "How bitter this loss" and after that you won't believe that the album finished that soon and you'll push the play button once more...
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Artist: SECT (@)
Title: Imperative
Format: CD
Label: Rage In Eden (@)
Rated: *****
After about a year and half after his debut album "Great desired utopia", Lukasz Maj is back with a new CD of his project Sect. This time the new CD IMPERATIVE sees Lukasz dealing with a different side of the theme he covered on the first album and a different musical approach. If the first album was focused on the fall of a civilization, IMPERATIVE paint a similar picture taking as theme social life under an ancient empire (these and the following are my deductions coming from the tracklisting). "Imperative" introduces us to a world where people where under control as stated by "Truth For Masses" and "Doom". Everything seemed to be lost and people had only their dreams ("The Wish") while the emperor at dawn "After The Sunset Before The Dawn" was entertained by freaks and beasts ("Grotesque"). The feast continued with rites and dances ("Phantasmagoria" and "Dancing With Snakes"). Years have passed and nothing changed that much on those tortured lands where the regime of "Modern Slavery" was still darkening people's dreams. They hadn't the fierce and the force to rioting and at dawn ("Dusk II") something happened, televisions everywhere were shouting about a coming worldwide tragedy ("End Times Prophecy"). Musically Sect shifted from the industrial scenario of the previous work to a great orchestral martial sound. Lukasz uses strings, brasses and percussions to create epic moments that fit very well the J.J. Rousseau excerpt he wrote on the inner cover of the deluxe three panels digipack: "Civilisation makes every man a natural born enemy of every other man and causes everybody to seek their welfare in others misery". Essential...
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Artist: NIMH (@)
Title: travel diary
Format: CD
Label: Silentes
Rated: *****
Here we go with a new release by Nimh after a small hiatus he's back with a plethora of new releases, the label is again Silentes and right after Maurizio Bianchi and Aube he's probably the most prolific artist on Silentes. According to my opinion this "travel diary" is the ideal follow up to "the missing tapes", the sound aesthetic of this two records is considerably different but by some means the travel-diary concept and the travel-music idea is basically the same. Clean production but with a warm feel, and if you consider in the line notes the artist wrote there's no synth and no electronic instrument involved in the production of this full-length we can assume he did a great work to produce it. The pictures of asiatic people included in the layout say a lot, infact Nimh used a bunch of singular exotic instruments with weird names like khaen, falu, bendir, soong and so on, most of them are string instruments, percussions and flutes, mouth organ. Believe it or not mixed together with field recording, some voices and with his usual touch behind the mixing desk he's been able to find out drones he's dragged around in this or that track adding an high hypnotic feel to an already oniric atmosphere. This cd features a bunch of tracks Verticchio has put out on some other releases before plus a new track and everything has been remastered, the result is great since instead of sounding like a greatest hits it all has a uniform idea that links all of the tracks of the cd. I'm tented to say some of t his artist has rarefied the atmosphere of his compositions leaving field recordings floating ashore on the surface of the single song, everything is embroided with a great taste and the global result stands on the edge between soft dark-ambient and ethnic-music. I'm sure William Burroughs and mighty Bryon Gisin would have enjoyed the trip, you can bet it!.
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Artist: OLDMAN
Title: two heads bis bis
Format: CD
Label: Low Impedance (@)
Rated: *****
I didn't know that much about Charles Eric Charrier until I've found he had some recordings out on glorious labels such as Sub Rosa. The entire release has been recorded and composed by him with the help of a bunch of top classy musicians helping on drums, trumpet, acoustic guitar, congas and samples. When I say classy musicians I really mean it, mr Charrier puts together a wonderful collection of smart tracks without leaving passion and pathos back home, what do I mean with it? I just wonna say experimental musicians sometimes are so absorbed in the research of a cool/smart sound or idea that forget that musicality and emotion don't necessary diminish the deepness of the composition. Sure I imagine many musicians are so worried to appear uncompromising that keep far from a "normal sequence" of notes as if it was the worst of the deadly sins, but we're all glad to see Oldman is not part of this category. Experimental music with an experimental feel, a post-jazz, avant-rock feel with an interesting use of electronic solutions. Oldman reminded me some old accessible but experimental releases on Tzadik records by people like Marc Ribot, David Shea (not the classic works) and of course some recording on Sub Rosa or some of those weird instrumental projects like On Fillmore, Ultralyd and many others, not that it's similar but I think this project has the same great spirit and attitude. Music for the sake of music, sound for the sake of sound, nothing is there just for the sake of being cool, everything is functional to the composition, everything is there to create a catchy atmosphere. Hard to describe an instrumental release with so many influences but I can't but recommend you to give a listen, this cd is relaxing and deep at the same time and bring together some simple but amazing sound combinations.
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