Music Reviews



Prometheus Burning : Beyond Repair

 Posted by John Gore   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Aug 13 2007
Artist: Prometheus Burning (@)
Title: Beyond Repair
Format: CD
Label: Hive Records (@)
Distributor: metropolis-records
Comprised of Greg VanEck and Nikki Telladictorian Palmer of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, this duo has been together since 1999, Prometheus Burning being birthed in 2001. "Inspired by the early Industrial acts of their youth such as Skinny Puppy, Ministry, Download, Pyschic TV, Coil, Throbbing Gristle, Frontline Assembly, and the glory days of Wax Trax, they set out to create an emotional, experimental, and harsh sound true to the roots of Industrial, yet innovative and expressive enough to push the envelope in a post-Industrial music era." Not much possibility of catching the lyrics in the din so if they do have a message, outside of the obvious "dance till you drop" variety, it’s pretty well lost. What we have here is the usual distorto vocals that sound like they’re run through a vocoder taking their furry place in the din. A decided Cyperpunk vibe throughout. Lots of heavy beats with good variety and some experimental spice thrown in for good measure. I like the beats but a lot of this genre of music everything else seem to melt into a static hiss. Lots of emphasis on the highs and lows and not much differentiation between instrumentation, like everything was run through a distortion box. I guess this makes sense on the dance floor but listening to this CD all the way through is a bit much and makes one a bit twitchy at the end. Probably on purpose. I checked out other sites to see what was said about the release and everybody seems to think they’re the next big thing, so what do I know.

XmH: Time To Play

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Aug 12 2007
cover
Artist: XmH (@)
Title: Time To Play
Format: CD
Rated: *****
Born from an idea of ex Active Disorder's Benjamin Samson and helped live by Pieter Sperling and recently joined also by Charlot Wever, XmH present to the lovers of strong e.b.m. their second release / first album TIME TO PLAY. Containing eleven songs and four remixes the debut album of XmH is a strong e.b.m. danceable album with lotsa energy and pounding rhythms. I know that there are tons of bands that have this kind of sound, so you'd ask what is XmH's peculiarity. Well, first of all Benjamin vocals aren't filtered and he do really shout his lungs out. Second, even if their music doesn't stand out for originality, their tracks are well conceived and you'll would enjoy them if you are searching for an album that would work well on clubs as well on a boring day when you are in need of a energy shot. "Rape your God" already had some kind of success on the alternative Dutch scene and for sure that one is the best of the lot. Also the mixes are doing their job and I appreciated "Global killer" version by Ng-Pro and "Rape your god" revisited by Jesus Complex. You can purchase the album directly from the band for 10 p+p included...
Aug 11 2007
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Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Klangdynamische Bewegung Vol. 1
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Klangdynamik Records (@)
Distributor: Mono-Culture
Rated: *****
A new label in sight for the German Electro/Industrial scene and we like to welcome the Augsburg-based Klangdynamik Records. For the start of all business activities this label has decided to release a compilation featuring 17 tracks which is strictly limited to 444 exemplars – and it comes unique in kind and package I must say. While opening the jewel case I noticed to my surprise that there’s included a hidden second 3" CD featuring 5 more appearances – congrats to this idea! The first tracks of the main full-length CD are musically dedicated to the Dark Electro/Industrial genre. FIX8:SED8 a.k.a. Sane is for sure the BEST unsigned artist out of Germany and he offers here a re-mastered version of "Minotaurus", a dark and layered piece taken from the self-released debut "Humanophobia" – intensive, mystic, creepy and maybe a bit PUPPYan-influenced – but a crown for every compilation world-wide!
NORDSCHLACHT is another German duo which fits musically well to the just mentioned FIX8:SED8 or OBJECT – another fine and layered Dark Electro piece of an uprising act, from which I hopefully soon get more to hear! WYNARDTAGE is for sure one of the better known acts from this compilation and could especially reach in the last year some euphoric reactions. Thumbs up to offer an unreleased remix done by LA MAGRA of "The Sin", originally available on the last album "Evil Mind", although this version shares a bit too much the SC-shuffle. Whenever WYNARDTAGE is available on a compilation, the second project ACYLUM, consisting of Pedro Engel (music) and Kai Arnold (Lyrics/vocals) isn’t far away – so it is here, although I was hoping to get also from this project an unreleased work, "Your Pain" got often featured elsewhere.
Since this label is based in Augsburg, it also takes care on some artists out of their local area – DISCONTINUED PROCESS and ELECTROJUDAS offer instrumental works, while L’IMAGE in cooperation with NILS VAN GOGH pushes the musically field of this comp into the Synth- and Futurepop-genre. The Accession Records-recording artists HUMAN DECAY can as usually convince with some fine worked out textures and a rich complexity in their arrangements, the nice refrain of the track "Anti-Fate" featuring the female singer Isabella makes this track grow to one of the outstanding appearances here. HUMAN DECAY are also featured on the mentioned second 3" CD. ChristianIV E.MachinA offers a danceable Electro track, while DIE PERLEN offer a retro-inspired sound with some rusty bass lines and a female voice performance. Also HERTZINFARKT and the for sure known act NO COMMENT offer female vocals and danceable pieces, but nothing which can be called thrilling. FILE NOT FOUND, also a better known name, stands for sound design heavily inspired of some early 80ies sounds and the cold romantic touch out of those days, and "Mathematics" isn’t an exception.
Finest Synthpop with some catchy synth layers reminding on some of the oldest DeVISION works you’ll get from dAVOS, a trio which is recently signed to Hungry Moon Records. With the Bavarian-based COLLAPSE PROJECT leaded by Klaus Hörmann, the label Klangdynamik likes to present its first signed artist. Musically operating in the wide field of Dark Electro/Industrial music, Klaus offers with his track "World Of Lies" a straight, but still layered track from his upcoming debut "Your Own Way" – convincing, an act to follow! SHARON NEXT, remixed here by Per Anders Kurenbach/PREVETION OF DISHARMONY then searches for some musically relations to acts like PRIDE AND FALL or VNV NATION – satisfying for the moment, but nothing groundbreaking. Last piece here seems to be a classic recording from 2K2 by a project named SADISM UNBOUND which turns musically into a slow and creepy tune.
But not to forget to listen to the five tracks on the additional 3" CD. As above mentioned, HUMAN DECAY have received another free slot and are offering a non-lesser attractive piece of work featuring Jennifer Parkin of AYRIA providing the guest vocals. Also the French citizen ChristianIV E.MachinA got featured here with a second veteran EBM track, while the further three acts are rounding up the support of the local scene. ELEKTRIK MINDS are offering a danceable EBM tune with some robot-like vocals – and somehow this all reminds not only me on KRAFTWERK. NEON COIL are rather more based into the field of Minimal EBM, maybe also thanks to the fact, that this to me unknown project only uses hardware equipment. The highly appreciated SkullLine-recording artist SHIFT 69 offers again a convincing appearance with a veteran-EBM bass line and vocoderized vocals, this time in a collaboration with FILE NOT FOUND.
76 minutes with a quite satisfying and diverse content luckily and mostly without any hints on some Hellektro tunes – well, this compilation is a fine showcase for the featured artists here and a musically extremely valuable collection for the label. Let’s hope the best, that the listeners will pay the needed attention. The first right decision with the signing of the solo project COLLAPSE PROJECT shows to me to the right direction – good luck and keep it on!

Tracklist:

01. fïx8:sëd8 - Minotaurus
02. Nordschlacht - Collapsing Centuries
03. Wynardtage - The Sin (La Magra Remix) *
04. Discontinued Process - Covert *
05. Acylum - Your Pain
06. Elektrojudas - Cosmos *
07. Niels van Gogh feat. L'image - My Own Religion (Single Version)
08. Human Decay feat. Isabella - Anti-Fate *
09. ChristianIV E.MachinA - le temps qui passe *
10. Die Perlen - Who Is To Blame?
11. Hertzinfarkt - Wir trauen uns was *
12. NoComment - Secrets *
13. File Not Found - Mathematics *
14. dAVOS - Illuminate (Version) *
15. Collapse Project - World Of Lies *
16. Sharon Next - Death Bow (Remixed by Prevetion Of Disharmony) *
17. Sadism Unbound - sc_03-874 *

3inch Bonus CDr
[only First Edition - limited to 222 copies]

01. Human Decay feat. Jennifer Parkin - Disbelieve (V01D Remix) *
02. Elektrik Minds - Lichtkraft *
03. ChristianIV E.MachinA - Car Crash *
04. Shift 69 - Audio Measurement (File Not Found Vox Edit) *
05. NeonCoil - Machine (Short) *

* previously unrelesead

Black Heaven: Kunstwerk

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Aug 11 2007
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Artist: Black Heaven (@)
Title: Kunstwerk
Format: CD
Label: Scanner / Dark Dimensions (@)
Distributor: Soulfood
Rated: *****
This is a new release by this German one-man project, which has been active and brought out some releases before through the German label Trisol. Now signed and published by Scanner of the Dark Dimensions label group, BLACK HEAVEN is leaded by Martin Schindler and with this album he likes to present us his very own view on Electro/Industrial music. The lyrics are completely in German and deal with a lot social-critically things, politics, globalism and, and, and. My deepest bow that at least somebody is able to address the things which have to be said in German without falling into embarrassment. This "Kunstwerk" (work of art) is lyrically one of the strongest releases in years. Musically Martin likes to present a subtle kind of Synth- and Futurepop, on some tunes pending near to Electro/Industrial, but the music generally doesn’t live from some fantastic-sounding effects – it seems he knows well about the weave of his lyrics. Of course his voice sounds clear, natural and undistorted, however else you would be able to understand the rich lyrics when he’d insist to yell through some distortion effects? I tend to compare his voice in a same register to Tom Shear of A23, also musically there can be surely found some relations to the world-wide known Accession/Metropolis-recording artist. Although – and that’s a good point as well – the music isn’t afraid to integrate here and there some acoustic elements like guitar ("Schwarzes Loch", "Zentrum") or piano sounds ("Zweite Sonne"). Also a must: check out the marvelous ballad "Dieser Weg" - definitely the highlight here! 14 tracks are available here on "Schindler’s list" (ha-ha), composed and arranged under the moniker "Kunstwerk" - Martin couldn’t find any better name for this work, applause!

APOPTOSE: Schattenmädchen

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Aug 10 2007
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Artist: APOPTOSE (@)
Title: Schattenmädchen
Format: CD
Label: Tesco Organisation (@)
Rated: *****
Despite the cover's showing a little girl (the CD title means "Shadow girl"), which wasn't making me suppose to find the kind of music I'm going to talk you about, Apoptose's SCHATTENMÄDCHEN is a well done mix of dark ambient / electronic music with great sounds (you can also find some industrial sounds here and there) and a very deep and involving ambience. The album collects old reworked tracks (the opening "Asche" was titled "Eichensiechtum" on "Infernal proteus", "Ba-137m" was originally titled "137Cs" when released on the "Statement 1961" compilation while "2wei sonnen" had its original version released on "Solaris collaboration" as well "...und null sekunden" which originally was released as "Null" on "...in the crystal cage") and three new tracks ("Violet silence", "Schattenmädchen" and "Karla") which with the new version of the old tracks form a strong work which is taking you through hypnotic places made of drones, humming loops, rumbling noises and spoken word vocals. Concerning the spoken word parts, we have Kenji Siratori (this is the third CD I received this month which sees Kenji's participation) as guest on the main track. Getting back to the music issue, I have to tell you that also synth pads have played a large part on this album and they create a dense layer which help so much into the creation of the sound-scape created. Tension also is a great element onto Apoptose's music and is good to see how it has been used. Check "Ba-137m", for example: see how the tension/noise grows during its nine minutes just to be released on the last two minutes, here the noise decrease but there's always a certain feeling of disturbance in the air. You can find some excerpts on Apoptose's website. Check them out...


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