Music Reviews



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Artist: Anhedonia (@)
Title: Ontology
Format: CD
Label: Aliens Production (@)
Rated: *****
Second release for this mysterious Czech one-man project, again brought to us by the small, but highly addictive and hard working Aliens label out of Slovakia. A lot of things in the sound of ANHEDONIA are reminding to the later works of their Slovakian label-mates DISHARMONY – too much indeed, that this happened by chance. Where DISHARMONY have started as a true authentic Dark Electro act inspired by early KLINIK/MORTAL CONSTRAINT works, ANHEDONIA has always been based in the modern IDM/Ambient-Electronica field. But since DISHARMONY opened themselves to a more different and IDM-related outfit, but projects nowadays are staying nearly side-by-side in a comparable sound outfit. Though this all doesn’t alter anything, ANHEDONIA deliver with a fine worked out album, which too impresses through several collaborations with friend artists like SOMBRA, UNICODE and of course DISHARMONY – especially the last mentioned mutual track marks a pearl of this fantastic IDM/Dark Electro-release. Other highlights I tend to name with the catchy, but also icy tunes "Emitter Junction" and "Empty Visions". Similar to any DISHARMONY-release, ANHEDONIA scores extremely well with a skillful synth play, dense moods, and a dark, but tasteful arranged sound outfit. It’s music to listen to under a pair of headphones, rather seldom to move to. Thumbs up also for the awesome cover art with its rotten maritime look.
Feb 15 2010
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Artist: CB (Cyclone B) (@)
Title: Evil
Format: CD
Label: Advoxya Records (@)
Distributor: Poponaut
Rated: *****
Maybe quite late, I nevertheless would like to reflect this last year latest album of Estonia’s leading Electro/Industrial act, since permanent readers of our site have surely discovered them on here. CB, as Igor and Rad have shortened their band name, have produced with "Evil" a quite complex and atmospheric more thicker outfit than expected. It has been taken nearly 3 years in the making after their last EP "Demolished", and this time was filled with some internal member problems too, to come back with this new album. "Evil" acts for the most part as a typical Dark Electro-minded album in the tradition of Canadian-based patterns like FLA or NUMB. Already the multiple layered intro tune "Sun" is a reflection of this tradition, which focuses lyrically and with the usage of voice-, noise- and environmental-samples on a drastically end time scenario. With "Place Of Nothingness" this duo also reanimates a tune already discovered on the above mentioned EP, here completely revamped. "Sect" may wins the imaginary contest of the most catchiest tune on here, while their beloved usage of vocoder effects on the lead vocals got reanimated with "Negative". No review without a word of criticism – quite often, and with "Restore Point" as being the negative highlight, their inserting of the lead vocals needs definitely some improvement and polishing work. The FX-driven music is that flawless and precise produced, but the vocals play a too important role in the whole mix, that this part seems to be the weakest of these Estonian duo. I would recommend them, not to allow their style of vocal performance alters the complete sound outfit. However the good moments win on this album, which is far away from any TBM- and Hellectro-attributes.
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Artist: Destroid
Title: Silent World
Format: CD EP
Label: Scanner
Distributor: Soulfood
Rated: *****
Destroid are no newbies to the DAC; the duo has released two full-length albums ("Future Prophecies" & "Loudspeaker") and is well known among the electro fans in Germany and world-wide. Destroid toured USA, Russia and Australia among other countries.
On the new EP the act combines the old-school EBM attitude with club compatible synths and some fair portion of emotions. The new EP offers four tracks and five remixes to them including those by [: SITD:] and Assemblage 23. The fans of Zeraphine would be glad to hear that Sven Friedrich, who made himself a name as an electro-head with his new project in the last year, was a guest artist on this release.
There can be no doubt that the EP is very professionally recorded and mixed. The opener "I walk slow" is eeerrr... slow. And thoughtful. The absolutely best song on the EP is the cover for the undying hit by The Sisters of Mercy "Lucretia My Reflection". Destroid managed to combine the original rock song melody with their electronic sound. Well done! However, this material bears potential for a more energetic, kick-ass track than that plus Andrew’s voice has got some of that dashing touch which Daniel lacks.
The act has comprehended the contemporary sound well and conducted the EP according to it, but exactly that makes them sound slightly like a number of other bands today. The music is good, but I had an impression of listening to one of other electro albums I’ve listened to in the near past.
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Artist: Hungry Lucy
Title: Pulse Of The Earth
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Rated: *****
Hungry Lucy have been around for over a decade, and I've definitely enjoyed everything that I've heard from them in the past. "Pulse Of The Earth" is to the best of my knowledge the fourth full length album from this trip-hop/ electro-pop/ darkwave duo, and it is in a somewhat more organic direction than their previous releases. By "organic", I guess I mean that while the songs are still heavily electronic, there is also quite a lot of piano and occasional string work mixed in as well, and also there is a little more emphasis on Christa Belle's vocals (not that she was at all lacking in vocal presence in the past). These are all definitely good changes.

All of the 10 tracks here are extremely well produced and arranged, with a very potent emotional resonance to them.
These songs are all very lush and dramatic, both in theme and in sound, much like their contemporaries BloodWire (who I like a great deal).




It's hard to pick favorites from these tracks, since they're all quite good, but there are definitely a few that stand out: "Balloon Girl", with it's catchy chorus yet somewhat sombre tone (it kind of makes me think of what Depeche Mode could sound like with a female vocalist), "Bumble", which reminds me a little bit of mid-nineties era Tori Amos, and "The Standing Ones", which has another amazing chorus, as well as some orchestral stabs in the middle that seem quite close to the opening part of the imperial march from Star Wars. "Sunday Smiled" is also a highlight for me as well. But like I said, all of these songs are great, so it's hard to choose.


All in all, "Pulse Of The Earth" is a warm, beautiful piece of dark electronic pop music. It is currently available as a free download, so you have no excuse not to check out this masterpiece. You won't regret it, I promise!



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Artist: ATTRITION (@)
Title: Ephemera
Format: CD
Label: Two Gods
Rated: *****
Originally released in 1995, after Attrition changed or updated their sound on the albums "A tricky business" and "The hidden agenda", EPHEMERA sees the band producing an instrumental soundtrack album for the second time after 1982's "Death house". The main differences between the two is that on EPHEMERA Matin had new digital keyboards and samplers on his hands to experiment with. If "Death house" was sounding dark and deeply influenced by the use of analogue synths, EPHEMERA, thanks to the new technologies, had a wider sound palette. Percussions, vocal samples, piano, organs, strings and digital sweeps were the core sounds that Martin used to write five long (almost ten minutes each) tracks that were aiming to explore different sides of the themes he usually covers: love, death, religion, sex and despair. "The Long Wait", "A Great Desire", "The Big Lie", "Wetenschap" and "Lang Zal Jij Leven" have a richer "open sound" but I feel that they are also a bit dispersive. Probably the new tools offered too many sounds and options and this didn't help Martin focusing. This new edition offers the same tracklisting without bonuses but, as usual for the new reissues, it has been remastered.
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