Music Reviews



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Artist: STRIP IN MIDI SIDE (@)
Title: Strip In Midi Side
Format: CD
Rated: *****
Strip In Midi Side is a band coming from Sarno, near Salerno, Italy. They just produced a demo CD with five tracks (you can check four of them on their myspace page): "A strip in your midi side", "Everyday like this", "The dreams", "Bring me down" and "Sweet bastard". They call their style neuro-pop and claim themselves influenced by Depeche Mode and Marilyn Manson. Well produced and mixed Strip In Midi Side's music is a a nice blend of electronic pop and guitar riffs. Personally I hear more Duran Duran than Depeche Mode or Marilyn Manson (check the refrain on "The dream") and this isn't a critique because I love the first two Duran Duran's album as well as the ones recorded with the original line-up reunited. Anyway, Giotto (vocals/synth), Amon (bass/vocals), Maks (guitar) and Akrid (synthesizer/programming/noises) are ready to get signed and they deserve it because their music is energetic, melodic and catchy. "Bring me down", for example, would fit well the alternative dance floors as it is a mix of goth, electro and new wave.
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Artist: NIHIL NOVI SUB SOLE
Title: Jupiter Temple
Format: CD
Label: My Kingdom Music (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Co-produced by My Kingdom Music and Lichterklang, JUPITER TEMPLE is the first official album of Nihil Novi Sub Sole. Headed by Marco Kehren (Deinonychs, ex-Bethlehem), Nihil Novi Sub Sole created a great martial industrial orchestral album where choruses, brasses, piano, strings, kettledrums, vocal samples and tambourines form a powerful soundtrack. Epic melodies and atmospheres play and important part and it's great to notice that the twelve tracks of the album aren't a cut and paste of classical records. Human beings under stressing or catastrophic events (like war) show their best or their worst sides and "Nihil Novi Sub Sole", "Die Angeklagten", "To Enslave & Destroy", "Avvenimento Traumatico", "Stigma", "Fellonia Con Sangue", "Walking Over Mother Disease", "Obedience To None", "Paralyze", "Victoria Victis", "Idolatry" and "Totgeborener Lebensmut" born as musical comments to events or situations where men were finding themselves brought to their extreme. Some examples: "Fellonia Con Sangue" (this song ironically has samples from Benito Mussolini hailing the Axis forces, who later turned their back on him) reflects hypocrisy and ignorance, "Obedience To None" is a dedication to those who paid a bitter price for their ideals and "Die Angeklagten" is about a court victim /witness who questions himself about how it happened that a whole nation found itself blindfolded / enslaved and committed such brutalities.
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Artist: DELEYAMAN
Title: Fourth, Part One
Format: CD
Label: Equilibrium Music (@)
Rated: *****
Gently touching the strings of their instruments and whispering like a wind blow, Deleyaman are releasing for Equilibrium Music their fourth album titled FOURTH, PART ONE. Why such a particular title? Well, basically because they composed so many songs that they have ready a second part. Composed by French and Armenian people, Deleyaman created eleven tracks where ethnic influences (check both the melodies and the instruments used) and poetry (the lyrics include selections of works by American poets E.A. Robinson, A. Hecht, R.W. Emerson, E.A. Poe, H. Crane and T. Stickney, but also from the Lebanese mystic poet Khalil Gibran) mix beautifully. Using mainly acoustic instruments (guitar, percussions and strings) and synth pads Deleyaman created a strong musical background which is enriched by female/male chants. While listening to "Aravod luys" or "Stay on" you'll find yourself into a sort of suspended in time moment, trapped by such mesmerizing atmospheres. If you loved late Dead Can Dance, try this band...
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Artist: Nitzer Ebb
Title: Industrial Complex
Format: CD
Label: MAJOR RECORDS (GSA, SCANDINAVIA, UK, EASTERN EUROPE, SPAIN,PORTUGAL)
Distributor: AL!VE
Rated: *****
It was back in 1982 when Bon Harris and Douglas McCarthy started recording their first demos. Their equipment was very limited: drums, a sequencer and McCarthy’s charismatic voice; all in the vein of the punk culture that was still big in those days. The upshot of those recording was that NE became the flag ship of a new music genre, later labeled as Electronic Body MusicEBM.
NE as a trio featuring Bon Harris, Douglas McCarthy and Jason Payne is responsible for recording such classic albums that innovated the music scene like "That Total Age", "Belief" and "Ebbhead" which every true EBM fan should be familiar with. "Big Hit" of 1995 was the last full length NB album released before the band decided to go separate ways. I think it is clear that "Industrial Complex" is THE most anticipated reunion album of the current year.
My personal impression of the album is throughout positive. NE succeeded to record an up-to-date sounding CD and yet remain loyal to their typical old sound. Another good thing worth mentioning is that McCarthy actually sings on this album unlike the usual case with his other project Fixmer and McCarthy where he mainly shouts.
The opener "Promises" strikes the listener right away with that familiar old-school EBM sound and the lyrics make you deliberate about the time you’ve got on your hands and what to do with it. "The time is not on your side" – how true.
"Going Away" is actually a ballad, believe it or not. Piano leads the melody and the use of electronic effects is absolutely minimal. The lyrics are about realizing how the gap between you and a person you love grows which will eventually end up in a separation.
"Hit you Back" is about rejection. "No matter what you do, I’m not in love with you" – who has never heard those words?
"Down on your Knees" has got some Depeche Mode touch to its sound, in my opinion. Really slightly. "I don’t Know You" is a nice mid-tempo song you can dance to without getting out of your breath. Actually, the lyrics do fit a place full of young adults. "Travelling" is a song about getting to know yourself and discovering things you were not aware of. Well, like Socrates used to say; know thyself.
There is a number of further songs truly worth to be checked out: "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang", My Door is Open" and a powerful "Payroll".
Unless The Sisters of Mercy unexpectedly come up with a brand new record, this is the re-union album of the year.
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Artist: BLACK SUN PRODUCTION AND BAHNTIER
Title: Enoeraew
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Limited to 499 copies (plus a deluxe edition of 99 boxes containing also a bonus MCD and a DVD plus other gadgets) ENOERAEW is the collaborative project of Massimo & Pierce (Black Sun Productions, Anarcocks, Queen Lear) and Stefano Rossello (:Bahntier//, Detune-X, Ketvector). Black Sun Production in the past have collaborated with Coil (they performed live with them during their later period and collaborated also with Lydia Lunch, Val Denham, Sudden infant, Niko Skorpio, Sonne Hagal and Andrew Zealley to name few) while Stefano has Justin Bennet (live drummer of Skinny Puppy, My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult, Peter Murphy, and many others) collaborating with him in :Bahntier// since 2005. ENOERAEW sees the trio creating ten original tunes (some born reworking older tunes) plus a cover of Virgin Prunes' "Sweet home under white clouds" which ideally are inspired by the work that Coil did since their early years filtered through Stefano's electro industrial bleeps and rich rhythmical layers and the theatrical experimentalism of the Swiss duo. The result is a ritualistic hypnotizing moment made of melodies, chants and rhythms. Love/desire, magic/death themes are the core of the tracks and make of ENOERAEW an album you'll gladly check...
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