Music Reviews



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Artist: Puscifer
Title: "V" is for Viagra - The Remixes
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Distributor: Red Distribution
Rated: *****
Great record. For those who are not familiar with Puscifer, that would be another pseudonym for Tool/A Perfect Circle singer Maynard James Keenan's solo endeavors. He first released the debut album "V is for Vagina" and now present us with its deconstructed and reinterpreted remix album version called "V is for Viagra". Maynard's voice is immediately recognizable and unavoidably marks this record with that aura of mysteriousness and coolness that surrounds his two main projects. But even if you are not a Tool/APC fan, this record has legs of its own and it stands tall against what's out there in this niche genre. There are no rock guitars and Maynard barely ever sings. All the vocals are either recited in a grandiose and powerfully enunciated way (almost Laibach-style) or spoken and distorted like many electronic bands do, or just simply heavily treated, cut up and staggering. The music is electronic in almost its entirety but still sounds very organic, dynamic and exciting, ranging from minimal and dark to climatic and chaotic. Remixes by Josh Eustis (Telefon Televiv), Lustmord, Dave "Rave" Ogilvie and Colin Janz, Danny Lohner of NIN/Renholder, Mat Mitchell and Contradictator (QOTSA, APC), Joey Jordison (Slipknot), Paul Barker (Ministry, USSA), Aaron Turner (ISIS), Richard Devine, Michale Patterson and 8MM insure freshness of approach and style and a true and established connection with the electronic world that we support and represent. Highly recommended.

NOCTIS NULL: End Times EP

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (4445)
Jun 03 2008
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Artist: NOCTIS NULL (@)
Title: End Times EP
Format: Download Only (MP3 only)
Label: TriTech Records (@)
Rated: *****
Life seems to be hard in United Kingdom, because Harsh EBM/Hellectro has seldom received any wider recognition in the land of chips and fish. Since we have recently changed some of our policies and submission guide-lines, I come finally on the review of this first release of the new UK-based label TriTech Records. Initially planned to be released as a physically CDEP, I quite doubt that this one is or will ever be available as a hard copy. Available as a download through the website of the label and of course through some legal and known downloading portals. "End Times" is an 8-track debut release for this one-man project consisting of Tony, who acts under his pseudonym [Valtiel]. As I could read at an online info sheet, the music is that sort of your typically daily doze of Harsh EBM/Hellectro music, very much in the known paths, which have been walked before by acts like DAWN OF ASHES or TACTICAL SEKT. Surely not at all the re-invention of the bulb, NOCTIS NULL leave especially on the fast-forward moving tracks like "New Dawn" and "Hands Of The Creator" the wish for a more authentic and personally style. 4 own tracks in a similar style with the one exception, the track "End Times" starts with an ominous dark instrumental intro filled with menacing female screams, until the beat invades – surely that one track to push NOCTIS NULL above the average. 4 additional remix works mostly done by label comrades and friends acts are complimenting this generally satisfying debut, on which some appearances have interesting alternative interpretations to offer. CEDIGEST for example give NOCTIS NULL a lecture with a more efficient remix on "New Dawn" – it happens seldom that a remix can match the original by miles. Besides CEDIGEST also SELLAFIELD are hailing out of the same label stable, while they turning "Hands Of The Creator" into a rhythmically Powernoise track. At least diversity is included thanks to the good remix contributions, also the additional works of REZUMAKI and NOISE PROGRAM are worth to check out. As I said, quite okay for a debut while the end of the rope isn’t reached. Let’s watch out for more activities of this British label, since their MySpace account, www.myspace.com/tritechrecords, announces some promising new additions to the roster.
Jun 03 2008
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Artist: KETVECTOR (@)
Title: The Infinite Regress
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Another new collaborative effort signed to the Italian Experimental/Industrial-label Rustblade. KETVECTOR consist of the DETUNE-X/BAHNTIER-musician Stefano Rosello and the US citizen, musician and producer Justin Gabriel Isaac Bennett, who can look back on fruitful activities with some global-players like Rozz Williams, MY LIFE WITH THE THRILL KILL KULT, SKINNY PUPPY or Peter Murphy (BAUHAUS). With KETVECTOR both musicians concentrate to produce speedy EBM-like rhythm patters with some Tribal influences, combined several strange and noisy textures and effect manipulations thrown in. Good and well done stuff mostly designed for some dancefloor-action, some of the tunes like "Struttura" for instance with it’s growing layer sounds and monotonous construction are candy for the ears. The whole album comes out as floating unit, all tracks are faded together and this gives the impression to walk through an unknown Sci-Fi-related area. Although quite entertaining as a complete instrumental Electronica-album, I miss a vocal performance, which would definitely help to add more personality into the efforts of this project – with respect to the exception "Metacognition". This album is also available as a special and only to 150 exemplars limited edition featuring several additional goodies and a bonus mini-CD in a special package. Check out this release and move over to the Rustblade website to pick up this limited item, before its gone completely.

Aestetic Idiosyncrasy: Past Tales

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
 Edit (4438)
May 31 2008
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Artist: Aestetic Idiosyncrasy (@)
Title: Past Tales
Format: CD
Label: Hypervoxx Recordings (@)
Distributor: DSBP
Rated: *****
With AESTETIC IDIOSYNCRASY the Hypervoxx/Telegrammetry label group signs on another newcomer act hailing out of Germany. AI consist of Christian Marks and he offers his debut, which is musically a convincing mixture of already discovered Futurepop-paths with some Dark Electro elements thrown in. Think of SYSTEM SYN and/or VIRTUAL VICTIM mixed with DECODED FEEDBACK to their "Mechanical Horizon"-times for a possible comparison – well, surely not the worst references around. While the music drifts between the styles, the same rating has to be given on Christian quite well sounding vocals – at times high-pitched distorted, at times natural and clear sounding – also here no reason for complaints. Indeed, "Past Tales" clocks about more than 71 minutes and comes out quite convincing, featuring some good food designed for dancefloor activities like "Border Of Lies", "Break Into Pieces" (although I would like to hear such an outstanding orchestral-like string arrangement on a somehow rather calm track...), or "Pay The Price". Favorite and surely that track which fits the most with the above mentioned comparison to DECODED FEEDBACK is "Dying Grace (RMX)" with some warm synth pads and complimenting piano drops, well done, the so-called I-see-experience. For the rather Futurepop-oriented audience both tracks "All The Scars Remain" and "Glass Of Equality" seem to be the most ear-catching pieces of work on this album. If there’s seriously any real reason to search for the hair in the soup, then maybe that the fact, that Christian doesn’t re-invent the wheel – which means, that his style, sound and kind has been already presented often enough before. But finally, who nowadays is able to provide something new, unheard, unique and innovative? Musically one of the best – if not the best – artists signed to Hypervoxx and I hope for a continuation of this project.
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Artist: ADAM-X (@)
Title: State Of Limbo
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Since the label Psycho Dynamics with the responsible man behind, the Belgian cult-musician and producer Eric van Wonterghem (MONOLITH, INSEKT), has ended the cooperation with Alfa-Matrix, the Italian label Rustblade could score immense to have him on board. At least Eric has done several additional studio work like mastering in his legendary Prodam studio, he has built the BAHNTIER/MONOLITH side-project DETUNE-X and his past MONOLITH-discography will be re-released in a special boxset through Rustblade soon. You ask, what this story has to do with ADAM X? Well, the last ADAM X album got released through the now defunct Psycho Dynamics/Alfa Matrix collaboration, and Eric of course provided the mastering also on this "State Of Limbo"-album. No matter how much bucks, praise and fame ADAM X Mitchell has earned before with his rather commercial-oriented Techno side of music, this new album hasn’t got anything to do with light-hearted chill-out Electronica. "State Of Limbo" is globally a beasty and ominous sounding Dark Electro/Industrial album, which features several excursions into the rhythmically Powernoise genre. What surprises is the fact, that ADAM X now sings on one or another track ("Programmed To Win", "Shape Takes Form" or "State Of Limbo"), quite unusual for this genre, but I like to encourage him to continue so. This album is an ideal addition for people having a fable for hammering steel rhythms ("Steel Shredder"!!!) and percussive moments, even more if the chosen sounds offer such a diversity and experimental background like on "State Of Limbo". Congrats also to Mr. Mitchell for the providing of a much better album than the last one at Alfa Matrix. Special thanks also to our Chain D.L.K. vice chief in person, Mr. Maurizio Pustianaz, for filling my heap with this great Rustblade release.


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