Music Reviews



:A7IE:: Distress

 Posted by Marc Tater   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Aug 21 2007
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Artist: :A7IE:
Title: Distress
Format: CD
Label: La Chambre Froide / Rupal Records (@)
Distributor: Rupal Records
Rated: *****
Hailing out of France, here comes the debut full-length album of this act now signed to the small French underground label La Chambre Froide and with the helping hand of the German Rupal Records. Behind :A7IE: stands Guillaume "Gyom" Letellier and he could already gain some attention with a compilation appearance on "In This Cold Terrific Room 2", released by this French label two years before. Gyom is also responsible for the business actions behind LCF, be it CD releases of some promising French artists (note: nowadays well-known acts like OBSZÖN GESCHÖPF and TAMTRUM have started their trail of victory thanks to the help of the LCF team...), be it the organization of some live events, or be it some DJ works nationwide. With :A7IE: he now likes to offer us his kind of Harsh EBM assaults – and indeed, "Distress" can be called as such. Like expected, this isn’t the music stuff for the weak: harsh 4/4-on-the-floor smasher pieces featuring the needed doze of "filth" available in the mighty bass and kick works, with an ominous male vocal performance – Hellektro par excellence, a bit comparable with acts like DIOXYDE for example, but also filled with some scary and moody moments ("Prelude" or "Le Lapin Blanc" – the best track here!). That this all isn’t the reinvention of a wheel seems to be clear, nevertheless this debut convinces totally, also thanks to some well chosen artists offering remix works for this CD. It’s appreciated to have Jan L. of X-FUSION to produce this release – this also has saved his appearance for the creation of a remix on "The Cage". Also included are Germany’s WYNARDTAGE with a remix on "Messiah", the already mentioned TAMTRUM working on the same track, and the Argentinean-based musician FSJC (ex-SUICIDE SOLUTION) offering a speedy and hardcoristic interpretation on the classic "Pray". By the way, :A7IE:’s smasher "Pray (This Agony") isn’t available here in its original version – a good point for the owners of the "In This Cold Terrific Room 2" compilation, because this saves the value of this comp. "Sick music for sick people", so a slogan out of the info sheet accomplishing this release. It fits well...

XENTRIFUGE: Light Extinguished

 Posted by Marc Tater   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Industrial Noise / Power Noise / Harsh Noise
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Aug 21 2007
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Artist: XENTRIFUGE
Title: Light Extinguished
Format: CD
Label: NoiTekk (@)
Distributor: Nova Media
Rated: *****
New release for the well-known German NoiTekk label and this time they like to present the long-awaited debut of one of the most promising newcomer acts out of the US-based Hellektro army camp – Chris C. a.k.a. XENTRIFUGE. After having discovered his work for the first time on BLC Productions "Interbreeding VII: The Flesh Harvest/Natural Enemies"-compilation (track "Entombed"), I kept my fingers crossed for an official release. XENTRIFUGE’s audio results have often been named Hellektro or Harsh EBM – that for sure fits somehow, but it is also to mention that Chris’ works feature a constant Powernoise influence. His tracks offer a very disturbing outfit, a massive noise and disturbing inferno accomplishing to the already straight tunes. Think on acts like ALLIED VISION combined with outputs of comparable colleagues like LIFE CRIED (...and indeed, here’s a collaborative track with Mr. Death Condition offering the vocals on "Paragon Void") for example. That this all doesn’t end in total sound climax belongs on the fact that Chris understands it well to integrate a gripping Dark Electro-minded melodic content. By all included aggression it is appreciated that Chris never seem to leave his musically base – it is recognizable that he has tried out a lot to work on his very own authentic kind. Maybe Chris has already found his special niche in the scene, but this release deserves the unreduced applause at first. This is a must-have release if you’re supportive to this genre!

Aug 20 2007
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Artist: Ashtech (@)
Title: Walking Target
Format: CD
Label: Interchill (@)
Rated: *****
"Walking Target" is the new album by artist Ashtech and producer Gaudi, two UK transplants originally from Italy who have made the UK their home and their sound. The Ashtech sound is a fluid electro-dub melange of deep bass lines, long reverbs, funk guitars, reggae beats and Jamaican MCing that screams London all throughout. 13 tracks of trance-inducing, upper-body-swinging, chill-party-going deep dub where occasional MC's lines will wake your ass up from your hazy dream of strobe lights and dark dancefloors to keep it bouncy and keep up the motion. You can hear influences of Nick Manasseh, Jeremy The Equalizer, Prodigy, Bill Laswell, Surya, Almamegretta (whom he collaborates with steadily). Labels such as On-U Sound, Asphodel, Different Drummer, Select Cuts, Echo Beach would have been perfect for this release, but Interchill was quick at securing Ashtech to their roster. This album is the real deal. It certainly doesn't sound like two Italians making music (at first I didn't even know they were from Italy and I would have put my money on London for sure). If they are on a quest to evolve into an authentic London imprint, then they are certainly there.
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Artist: OTX (@)
Title: A World In Red
Format: CD
Label: Funkwelten (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Funkwelten isn't a really active label, their past release was last year's Oil 10 album. Fortunately their releases are really good and I've been surprised by the sound and by the cinematic ambience created by their latest two releases. OTX, like Oil 10, is a project of a French guy (his name sounds so Italian as Stefano Piredda sounds coming from Sardinia, so I'm assuming he's French) which had at his active two other albums and an activity as graphic designer. Anyway, A WORLD IN RED contains 12 tracks and 2 remixes which will nail you to your chair because of their intensity. Being influenced by ambient and by techno, Stefano created tracks rich of sounds, rhythms and energy, where drums don't simply sound, but blast! On "Cyber murder" you can find his collaboration with Kenji Siratori (yes, again!) which duet with the apparent calmness of the choirs and guitars. When rhythm section starts, the track turns into a sort of new wave dreamy one with some industrial ambient inserts. If you love classic electronic music but you are also into techno and e.b.m. don't be afraid into checking this one. Great sounds and upbeat rhythms are waiting for you. Just loose yourself and follow the flow of sound...

VEILLANCE: United

 Posted by Marc Tater   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Aug 16 2007
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Artist: VEILLANCE (@)
Title: United
Format: CD EP
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
A self-produced debut release for the German newcomer VEILLANCE, a project leaded by Marko V.. Marko could already collect some first experiences with a rather Goth-inspired previous project entitled BLOODYWING. Under the moniker VEILLANCE he now produces a kind of experimental EBM/Electronica music. Lets agree to sort his efforts in to be experimental, since his work is instrumental arranged and he leaves the known paths of foreseeable "verse-refrain-bridge-repetition" structure. This 6-track-EP therefore has to be seen as a first testing of the given possibilities by constructing analogue synth patterns, the fatter the better. This all provides a kind of hypnotic feeling thanks to the repetitive kind of the arrangements as well as the rhythm patterns. 4 own compositions are available here, on which I tend to rate "United V.2" to be the favorite. Two remix works accomplish this EP, "Time To Kill" got revamped to a straight, almost Harsh-EBM-like piece by IN[PERFECTION] – a name hailing out of Portugal to keep in mind for sure – while the second remix on "United" got provided by DJ Shai, turning this track to a more than 8 minutes long striking EBM floor stomper. In all a promising debut for sure, also the choice to offer a marvelous cover art created by JirkoArt speaks for the ambitions of this project. Finally - a decision to integrate a vocal performance would make the good things even better here. Well, Marko, think on it...


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