Music Reviews

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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Surge & Subside
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Aphotic Audio (@)
Distributor: DSBP
Rated: *****
How pervert is this? Millions of Germans have been sitting in January evening by evening decadently in front of their TV sets to watch the 'drama' of a group of wannabe-prominent people 'trapped' in an Australian jungle camp.
The real drama though has happened to the same time only a few miles away in the Australian state of Queensland, which has been punished with a millennium-tide. It has been a historical high tide, which Australia hasn't seldom seen before. Uncountable people lost all of their estates, several had to fight for nothing more than their naked survival.
I'm ashamed by our TV-watching (de-)generation, which is seemingly impressed by the childish behavior of these half-prominent jackasses, which have played their role well in a faked show. Simply to say 'sorry' for this unbelievable and disrespectful kind against those Australian people fighting for their existence sounds like utter mockery. However, there are people over there in Australia making the right decision about charity. Help in any form is required and any idea, which promises only a small doze of relief, is an action to follow and support.
The same thoughts have had the people of the label Aphotic Audio (EMPTY), even more regarding the fact, that with Ken Evans of the Synthpop-project TYCHO BRAHE, one of their friends is directly affected. So with the support of the Australian Crash Frequency community, they've sent out their call for help and support to international-based artists, friends and band-projects, to provide tracks for this charity DCD compilation set, which can be purchased directly via the Aphotic Audio website.
All proceeds extracted out of the sales of this DCD compilation will be forwarded to the flood victims in Queensland. The response has been amazing: You'll get global scene-players like PSYCHE, ANGELSPIT, DISMANTLED, ASSEMBLAGE 23, SKREW, or COLLIDE asides hard-working independent contributors like DIVERJE, LUCIDSTATIC, I, PARASITE, ANDROID LUST, AUTOCLAV 1.1, ANGEL THEORY, and of course the complete roster of the Aphotic label (among others EMPTY, M(I)LKRUN, IAMMYNEWT...). By checking the mouthwatering track listings stated below, it's nearly forbidden to rate any of these fine contributors for their good intention, as they all offer the best they can - what counts is the will to help and to support the victims of this tragic flood.
All purchasers of this DCD set via the Aphotic Audio website will be specially rewarded with an additional Download-pack consisting out of 9 additional tracks (see below...). More than ever before are you, dear listener of Electro-/Industrial-/Alternative-music, asked for to purchase this compilation set. As the current dramatic happenings in Japan and Libya additionally prove, there can't be enough action available to relief suffering. So now it is on you to show your support ' illegal downloading of this DCD set is strictly forbidden and similar pervert, than the behavior of all participants of the TV 'drama' mentioned above! Go ahead and buy this one!

1-1 Sensory Gate - Ianus 2:46
1-2 Angelspit - Cold Hard Cash 4:05
1-3 Empty - Drift (Ginger Snap5 Remix) 5:25
1-4 Bound In Oblivion - Pain & Suffering 6:32
1-5 Psyche (2) - The Beyond - Live (Flood Relieft Edition) 5:32
1-6 Streak (3) - Groovey Booty 6:06
1-7 Diverje - Suffer ( V2 Remix) 4:08
1-8 Dismantled - Dead On Impact 4:23
1-9 Lucidstatic - Operating Directive 7:18
1-10 Mangadrive - 67 Gemini Starglider 5:49
1-11 NVEiN - All So Wired 5:02
1-12 Skrew - Universal Immolation 5:38
1-13 Tempest & The Diaspora - IO 3:42
1-14 Viral Millennium - Vomitosis 3:47
1-15 In-Fused - Misplaced (Iammynewt E-rage Mix) 5:26
1-16 Maximum Sexy Pigeon - Tunguska! (Water Retentive Mix) 3:29

2-1 P45K - Adrift 3:15
2-2 Assemblage 23 - Raw 6:47
2-3 I, Parasite - A Violence At Rest 7:43
2-4 Android Lust - God In The Hole 3:49
2-5 Soulchasm - My Facade (Empty Remix) 4:35
2-6 Autoclav1.1 - Waxing 4:45
2-7 Anhedonia - Rain 5:23
2-8 Motion Fused - Reflection Of Madness (Extended) 4:37
2-9 Angeltheory - The Wind 4:12
2-10 Headdreamer - Colder 5:22
2-11 Collide - Ocean 5:26
2-12 M(i)lkrun - Lard Ram 3:48
2-13 Dark Territory - Trista Me (Angeltheory Mantra Mix) 4:34
2-14 Iammynewt - itHURTS 3:55
2-15 Flood Of Rain - Grey Sky 5:34
2-16 Blast Radius - To Find Them Frozen 5:07

MP3-1 Sensory Gate - Purgatory (Marco Zanza Devoted Mix) 5:17
MP3-2 Empty (3) - This Regret Redux 5:29
MP3-3 P45K - Before Dawn 5:55
MP3-4 Blast Radius - Sight Unseen 4:53
MP3-5 P45K - What Have I Done 6:06
MP3-6 Tempest & The Diaspora - Jasmine 4:34
MP3-7 Iammynewt - Egor (Version 2.0) (Skullduggery Remix) 3:56
MP3-8 Disharmony - Evolution 8:12
MP3-9 Betty X - Shoot'em Up (Fury Road Mix) 3:04

Silent Auction: H On Earth

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
 Edit (6354)
Apr 01 2011
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Artist: Silent Auction (@)
Title: H On Earth
Format: CD
Label: Nilaihah Records (@)
Distributor: CD Baby
Rated: *****
This album counts to the few, which you hear 1 or 2 times, but then you turn it away for a while (... so at least it happened to me...). Before it starts to collect dust, you'll pick up this seemingly uncomfortable album again to give it some more spins. A tiny wonder happens, because everything, you've found uninspired, plain and platitudinous before, now seems to have developed, yes, some of the tracks are now sounding clever arranged and offer the needed portion of emotion in the vocals. Signed to the US-based label Nilaihah Records, Mr. And Mrs. Barbero are hailing out of Rochester, NY. The album title 'H On Earth' surely doesn't mean a place called 'Hell', as the music of this duo rather touches Synth-/Futurepop-, Trance- Alternative- and EBM-genres. What has eventually disturbed a better impression after the first spins may belongs on the fact, that SILENT AUCTION aren't that kind of a sugar-sweet Synthpop-act with gay-ish vocals and a catchy Electronica sound-design. You definitely need to give them some more spins to let them grow on you. You will be rewarded for your patience with a diverse sounding album in the above described smoother styles, whose brilliance hides in the sarcastic, at times humorous nailing lyrics ('Good Girl' ' that one reminds me on my 9-years-old daughter in her 'best' phases...). With often changing the lead vocalist between Terri and Jason Barbero, they additionally include variations into their whole concept. 'Heart Attack' is musically the most catchiest tune, a brilliant expressed broken-heart story featuring rich synthesizer pads. The opener 'Beautiful Mess' balances well between a classic Synthpop- and Trance-influences. Also worth to mention are the two remix contributions by MIND.IN.A.BOX, who do an awesome job with their breathtaking programming abilities on 'Reverie', and COSMICITY, who rather add dancefloor-compatibility on 'Heart Attack' - which (of course) destroys the heart-felting mood of the original. SILENT AUCTION have hammered out a quality album not to underestimate, it stands for a variable alternative in the Synth-/Futurepop-genre.

Schwarzes Fragment: Seelenkiller

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Apr 01 2011
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Artist: Schwarzes Fragment
Title: Seelenkiller
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Ionium Records (@)
Rated: *****
I don't believe, that a successful story like a fairytale repeats in our current times, if the protagonists try too obviously to warm up already discovered ideas available on the market for longer than a decade. Too much of the musically ingredients in usage by SCHWARZES FRAGMENT are drawing relations to the same formula, which brought TERMINAL CHOICE 1995 ('Totes Fleisch') unexpected success. This EP offers fair produced Electro/EBM-like arrangements on all 8 tracks, which blend Goth- and Future-/Synthpop-genres here and there, plus you'll get plain and cliche-filled German lyrics mostly dealing with the usual and repetitive darker themes and feelings of someone's daily life. It cannot be said, that this fusion would not promise success, but - as stated above - I doubt, that this happens again. Sometimes the lyricist manages hard to find a useful rhyme provided by a male singer, whose usage of FX on the vocals draw another comparison to TC, okay, but more often the music itself comes out relative toothless compared to the early days of above named idol. How can anyone 'try' seriously to reflect a rather complex, psychological theme like a 'Borderline Syndrom' with a simple structured broken relationship framed by a cheesy Futurepop-like outfit? Well, TERMINAL CHOICE to me earned in 1995 a lot of success and recognition out of nothing, by chance, and purest luck. If SCHWARZES FRAGMENT would be able to score comparable, this would be another wonder of the world...

MAX DURANTE A.K.A. NOVA ELECTRO: Invaders From Outer Space

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (6344)
Mar 27 2011
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Title: Invaders From Outer Space
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Battery Park Studio
Distributor: Juno Download
Rated: *****
Boss of the labels Analog Dust, Sintetico, Macroaudio and the re-launched Prodamkey, Max Durante is well know in the electro scene for his releases as well as for his collaborations with Keith Tucker from Aux 88 and with Anthony Rother (on the project called Netzwerk Europa). On INVADERS FROM OUTER SPACE, the new release on Battery Park Studio, he presents himself as Nova Electro just to bring us four new tracks in balance from electro and detroit techno. The E.P. opens with "Digital dream", a minimal upbeat tune focused on a robotic bass line, rich bouncing rhythms and sparse filtered vocals. "Robot Edit" sounds like a dark electro version of the previous track with a catchy slow lead synth sound that produces a sort of hypnotic circular effect when listened with headphones. This is really Detroit sounding. "Where Is My Spoon" starts like a minimal nasty tune with an obsessive rhythmic bass line. When dry robotic rhythms and samples are added it sounds even more obsessive and menacing. "Electro punisher" sounds like a Detroit techno tune that goes berserk with those synth loops and samples which increase the intensity of the schizophrenia effect. Good one... P.s. Soon the release will be available on vinyl as cut on demand at
(Proofread by Johan Sebastian Bot)

NATALIE BERIDZE / TBA: Forgetfulness

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (6343)
Mar 27 2011
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Title: Forgetfulness
Format: CD
Label: Monika Enterprise
Rated: *****
Member of the artistic collective Goslab, Natalie Beridze/TBA is releasing her newest album FORGETFULNESS on Monika Enterprise. The new album contains fourteen new tracks in balance from electronic dance, industrial, spoken word, ambient and minimal electronics. With an overall atmosphere of suspension on time, the tracks show a multifaceted artist who is able to create hypnotic/melodic tunes that seduce and lead you through dreamy upbeat paths. Alternating episodes that could be used for a David Sylvian electronic album (thanks to the use of smooth atmospheres, rich sound textures and glitch noises) to industrial ambient based tunes ("Deeply superficial" has ambient piano moment and noise echoing blasts and "What about things like bullets" is based on a rhythm that seems sampled from Einsturzende Neubauten), cinematic piano based tunes (like on "Give my thoughts no tongue" or "Blue shadow") and dancey melodic melancholic ones (see "Forever has no shadow" or the beautiful "The face we choose to miss"). FORGETFULNESS is a really good album and I suggest you to check it!

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