Music Reviews



POST INDUSTRIAL BOYS: Trauma

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Dec 06 2006
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Artist: POST INDUSTRIAL BOYS
Title: Trauma
Format: CD
Label: Max Ernst (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****

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George Dzodzuashvili created Post Industrial Boys some time ago but at the beginning of the 90s he created Mjava Message, his first project. This was the first effort that brought him to join other people and to form the group Goslab. The Post Industrial Boys moniker born two years ago with the release of the first self named album. Now, two years later, with the help of different people on lyrics and vocals, George release TRAUMA. Containing 20 delicate acoustic electronic songs The album also contain "Benzilina", a track originally from the Mjava Message period. Since the first listening it is clear how much the collective from Tblisi / Georgia worked on this release: it has so many moods (if "Stay mute" and "Afternoon" are a sort of acoustic electronic version of Belle And Sebastian, the following "Iced sea" or the opening "Two in one" are dark intimate electronic songs) that sometimes it seems to listening to a compilation of a band. The songs are now jazzy with light electronic orchestrations and then minimal and melancholic. Sometimes it seems to listening to an updated version of Orange Juice. Very creative indeed...
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Artist: VV.AA
Title: Elaste Vol.1 - Slow Motion Disco
Format: CD
Label: Compost Records (@)
Distributor: Caroline
Rated: *****

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On late 70s / early 80s Italy was living an economical recession and also the social climax was tense. Red brigades, workers’ strikes and political changes were the common headlines of the newspapers (things seem didn’t change that much, huh?). Music was also changing radically with the born of punk and the death of big rock bands. Also dance music was affected by a wave of fresh air and styles were fading one into the other. If you check bands like The Giants, Rockets (with their major hits "Electric delight" or "Galactica") or "Dinasty" by Kiss you’ll realize that also rock music was fascinated by dance music of the likes of Diana Ross (is it a case if she had been Gene Simmons’ girlfriend for a while?), Barry White or Earth Wind & Fire. Dance halls where places where people were consuming their Saturday rite and Baia Degli Angeli in Rimini was Italy’s famous place. After its closing (due for drug reasons) DJ Daniele Baldelli decided to propose the same innovative sounds founding a new club: Cosmic. Here new genres born. Italodisco, Cosmic or Afrofunky were few of them and mixing Krautrock, Industrial or Funk wasn’t a problem at all. Nowadays DJ Mooner (member of Zombie Nation, Hart Of Noise, Zombocombo and owner of the Erkrankung label) decided to revive the genre by compiling an album of those records that defined the Cosmic way of spinning records. Tracks that had 80-105 BPM rhythms (for this reason the compilation is titled "Slow motion disco") and that blended synth spacey tunes, funky rhythms and rock melodies. The eleven tracks included have been released through the 1978/1984 period and along with well known 80’s bands such as Chris & Cosey (here included with "This is me" from their "Heartbeat" album) and Heaven 17 (you can find their "I’m you money" coming from their 12" released just before "Penthouse & Pavement") you can find The Rah Band (with their particular afro funky instrumental "Electric fling"), Clive Stevens & Brainchild ("Mistery mix – remix" is their track. This is really 80’s space rock also because searching with Google about Clive Stevens I read that he was fond on ufology), Love International ("Dance on the groove – and do the funk" is their funky hymn), Doctor’s Cat (here included a DJ Mooner edit of their "Crash", a tune sounding like a Chinese electro pop tune. Taken from their album "Gee Wiz", released by Discotto on 1984), Logic System (Hideki Matsutake, collaborator with Yellow Magic Orchestra, produced different albums with this moniker and "Clash – Chinjyu if sun" is his tribute to robotic space electronica), Memory Control One (M. Noe mix of their track "Basic", Beppe Loda created the track with Francesco Boscolo and he describe their style as Italo Synth), Peru (an electro instrumental electro easy listening tune titled "Oriental"), Eloy ("Horizons" is the track picked up for this German band of dancey progressive rock with female choruses like vocals) close the compilation a track by Chocolate Star titled "The pop", a sort of experimental funky tune with a bass and bottles as percussions. Even if I am an Italian guy, this compilation is a great discover and I suggest you to check out these great and sometimes particular tunes!

SEABOUND: Double-Crosser

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Dec 04 2006
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Artist: SEABOUND (@)
Title: Double-Crosser
Format: CD
Label: Dependent (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
Before I received the new full-length album of one of Germany’s Synth-/Futurepop-based leaders I could already read some first comments complaining that the new SEABOUND stuff wouldn’t be catchy and danceable enough in comparison to previous works of this act. Now, after listening several times to this new album, I must say, that the overall concept behind this album may doesn’t allow to sing about "sunshine-and-cutie-chicks" and to produce stuff which melodic content can grab attention. Professor of psychology, Frank M. Spinath here dissects lyrically in several parts his vision of betrayal and deception of the human mind – for me obviously, that all the "fun" is left out. Like on almost all works I’ve discovered so far from him, I really think, that his knowledge or wisdom he extracts with his music goes deeper, than what he may can read or has learned from his textbooks. If it depends on a simple autumn depression ("October Song", damned – an extendet version of this fine tune is required!!!) or up to breeding hate ("Traitor") doesn’t play a role – his efforts here seem to be a cure for him, also from personal experiences. Therefore it fits that the music produced by Martin Vorbrodt mostly doesn’t follow already known paths, I would qualify this new output being a subtle mixture between Synth-/Futurepop with Dark Electro, while not sliding into crude EBM attitudes. The arrangements are – as usual – fine and detailed worked out, some pieces really offer a spacey feeling thanks to rich included layer sounds ("Sapphire"). I agree with the included info sheet that with this release the acceptance and the success of SEABOUND internationally will grow - also the fact that Eskil Simonsson of the Swedish act COVENANT has produced two tracks is another proof of this. This is one of the fine Dependent releases, which made this label that sought-after - not too commercial-oriented and with the right sense for quality and rich art. Go out, and try hard to get the limited DCD edition featuring extra remix works by COVENANT, ROTERSAND and O. Wollschläger.
Dec 04 2006
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Artist: STROMKERN (@)
Title: Reminders
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Dependent (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
Long awaited 2nd release out of the successful last STROMKERN full-length release "Light It Up", and also the needed sales item to offer a new release on the mutual world with FRONT LINE ASSEMBLAGE. No doubt also, that "Reminders" was chosen to be pointed out f "Light It Up", it is indeed the most catchiest track from this album. The "ear-worm" qualities this track has to offer brings this piece to the already existing hall of fame of STROMKERN's greatest tracks like "Re-Aligned", "Night Riders" or "Hesitate". So you’ll got a cool Extendet Version, a Trans Siberian Remix work done by no one else than Rhys Fulber (FLA), a great, because completely electronic-based remix work by ECHO VIRUS and also a valuable Impeachment 7" Mix by the legendary US-act OUT OUT. Two unreleased special b-sides are available as well, a dark and with additional bass and guitar sounds constructed piano-driven tune called "The City" and with "Feed The Machine" another quality track featuring Ned’s vocals, which could it easy make it on a full-length album. Although the acoustic component in the music arrangements of STROMKERN have generally grown, I’m still astonished by the excellent compositional efforts by this US act. This is by far the very best SiCD of Dependents DCI Vol. 3 collection, without competition to the other two partner releases.

DISMANTLED: Thanks For Everything

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Dec 01 2006
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Artist: DISMANTLED
Title: Thanks For Everything
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: Dependent (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
I should admit that this review stands a bit under the influence of a thread readable at the well-known Side-Line online forum, at which the artist and starter of this thread, Gary Zon himself, has asked the forum members to vote for him at an online resource – only to test, if there’s still enough recognition and acceptance for his DISMANTLED project. Lately he has built up a more commercial-oriented side-project called AERODRONE, and the first reactions of the audience seem to be quite good. At first I do not understand why this thread hadn’t got banned from the first posting on to the so-called "Plug Section" of this forum – because it is nothing else than a shameless self-plugging infiltrated with the sarcasm Gary Zon likes to spread with his last full-length CD "Standard Issue". Hard to believe that a well-known and highly anticipated act like DISMANTLED needs to ask for some votes. The Electro/Industrial scene and/or the music business generally isn’t responsible to save and warm someone’s ass. Out there are a lot of working – hard working – people leading a label with names like Dependent and Metropolis. These fine people have offered their attention and trust and have worked hard and a lot for DISMANTLED through the years. A lot of not-lesser talented acts out there would be proud and deserve the deals with which Mr. Zon likes to play his sarcastic games. Gary, try to remember why you got picked up and signed – right, it was that harder and darker sample-driven Electro/Industrial style. Labels like Dependent have seen and heard your talent, but to work with an artist to bring him out with a promising response needs at least three full-length albums in a nearly comparable style. Nothing against musically development - but what have you done album per album? Drastically changes now into pure, danceable, ordinary Futurepop – well, that isn’t what people and what your labels could expect. And so we come to the term of this review, these 5 tracks provided on this SiCD, another part of the DCI, the Dependent Club Invasion Vol. 3. "Thanks For Everything" is a second single release taken out of the third DISMANTLED album "Standard Issue". It is one of the better songs and thanks to the still happened success this album could earn, this release somehow makes sense. So here’s a new Club Version done by Krischan of ROTERSAND, which fills a bit the originally sparse included instrumentals – nice and effective work, as usual. Comes then a new Alternate Version created by Gary Zon himself – in comparison to the work of ROTERSAND it sounds like a – lets say it, first demo version. Two new tracks are created, on which "Spin" gets my vote for the best work here. Note, this is originally an AERODRONE track, but receives a special "Aerodrone to Dismantled Remix" with some cool vocoder effects on the vocals. At least we got another remix done by the US act CESIUM 137 offering some cool breakbeats asides the original. Globally this new output can’t leave the gray area of deep averages – compared to earlier DISMANTLED works including the mentioned debut and also "Post-Nuclear" it sounds quite unimpressed. If there’s really a small doze of seriousness behind that SL forum thread, Gary, you should indeed think to stop or to take a longer break for DISMANTLED. To fill the field with third-class Futurepop can’t be the target a talented man likes to reach. Think about passion and dedication – and let commercial-oriented aspects out for AERODRONE.


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