Music Reviews

STURM CAFÉ: So seelisch, so schön

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (2277)
Nov 11 2005
Artist: STURM CAFÉ (@)
Title: So seelisch, so schön
Format: CD
Label: Progress Productions (@)
Distributor: Border Music
Rated: *****
A huge portion of humor is required to bear the consumption of this debut CD from this Swedish duo. Jonatan Löfstedt and Gustav Jansson will surely not enter any high positions of a "best releases in 2005" contest, but they have for sure created the most funniest release for this year. The music of this two guys is mainly minimal Neo-Body music in a comparable style with old NITZER EBB or ORANGE SECTOR. As a further form of inspiration can be seen the early 80’s "Neue Deutsche Welle" movement, comparable with some minimal acts like FEHLFARBEN or DAF. About the fun – well, they’re "singing" in German – but with an scary accent and with grammatically mistakes close to the edge of asking a bit much. Their abilities in German are surely not designed to be printed in a textbook. And also musically there is nothing outstanding besides the endless 16tel bass sequences like we have heard it often enough from the mentioned patterns. I miss also a bit more effort to a more rough EBM-like sound like they have well done here with the track "Stiefelfabrik", maybe somehow in a direction towards to their countrymen of SPETSNAZ. It is fun and enjoying to listen to 2 – 3 tracks at times, to consume a whole album is for my personal preference a bit too strenuous. I am sure that this release will be discussed controversy – anyhow, also this is a kind of promotion for this band...
Nov 10 2005
Artist: PTI (@)
Title: Exhaust
Format: CD
Label: WTII Records (@)
Distributor: Metropolis Records
Rated: *****
This is the remix companion disc to the 2004 official debut "Blackout" of this band, also out on WTII Records. PTI could collect with their remix contest a lot of known and big names Like A23, CHRIST ANALOG, NEGATIVE FORMAT or GOD MODULE to realize this project. They have added also some up and coming artists like INTERFACE or TORRENT VACCINE to this roster. So as a result we can say that the musical diversity is rich given here. Best remix works are done by INTERFACE with their Futurepop-inspired version of "Ivory Tower", PTI themselves giving us a very Electro club trendy remix of their own "Databass". Same track received also a marvelous remix work by FLESH FIELD, they’ve created thanks to tons of old-school EBM sounds something remarkable which stands above the average here. But the best track here is the only one and unreleased title track performed by PTI themselves here. While the vocals will not win a beauty contest, they nevertheless satisfy here with a strong "slap-in-your-face" attitude and the music itself gives an convincing example of modern Electro/Industrial music. If their next new compositions are placed in this vain, PTI should be able to storm into all ears in all corners of the Electro/Industrial scene. Please notice also the once more excellent cover art done by Scott Craig of, not the first artwork he did that outstanding. Included is also a secret password to give the buyers of this CD access to a hidden area at the PTI website. There you can find several more remixes designed for this "Exhaust" CD created by the likes CAUSTIC, FILAMENT 38, HOLON and several more. Amazing release – go and get it!

VV.AA.: Advanced Electronics Vol. 4

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
 Edit (2273)
Nov 09 2005
Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Advanced Electronics Vol. 4
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: Synthetic Symphony
Distributor: SPV
Rated: *****
This DCD is recommend by the DAC, the German Alternative Charts and was compiled in a collaboration between Hardbeat Promotion and Synthetic Symphony. You maybe get it already on this facts, you get here a compilation mainly including the currently big names of the Electro/Industrial scene. Luckily you get also some special versions, unreleased stuff, remixes or other goodies by 22 of the 32 tracks. Some pieces I have picked out here which are worth to get mentioned. The opener is well done with a longer than 7 minutes Extendet version of the track "Ascension" done by [:SITD:], which finds the right mix between known elements of their music and a good sequencing work. VNV NATION are giving a remix of "Chrome" done by the talented SOMAN, while I must admit that this remix work is more influenced by the original version of the track. The Swedish Neo-EBM band SPETSNAZ are more and more growing to a constant big name and the new "Apathy" is just another fine proof of this. A live gig of HOCICO is always a special event and their gig in Israel seemed to be a big success. Although their track "Spirits of Crime" is surely not their best piece, I am quite impressed by the quality and intensity of this piece here. GRENDEL are also present, unfortunately without a new or unreleased piece, but "Aspiration Feed" taken from their latest EP "Soilbleed" is still a remarkable track. THE PROMISE is a new project by the Ex-PHILTRON member Sven Enzelmann and musically based between Synth- and Futurepop, not surprising, but with a good quality.
The second CD starts with the new track "Bleed For Us All" done by SUICIDE COMMANDO which can be seen as a preview of the next full length release "Bind Torture Kill". Luckily Johan van Roy seems to remember the times before his last one "Axis Of Evil", because this new track reminds me more on the "Mindstrip" times and has a more aggressive feel. Belgium’s IMPLANT are next in a cooperation with the well-known icon Anne Clark. While Clark’s sound of her vocals is intense as usual, IMPLANT deliver a satisfying exploration in the Electro-/Trance fields, well done – respect! SOMAN is an act from Infacted-Recordings, combining Electro with some noisy and industrialized moods and their track shows some good ideas. AYRIA, Canadian sole project by Jennifer Parkin brings us her great "My Revenge on the World" in a special remix done by the legendary OUT OUT, a veteran US-Industrial act already active since more than 15 years. Closer to the end of this DCD set some more up and coming acts get the possibility to be on the highly acclaimed compilation, like the minimal Synthpop act FILE NOT FOUND, both Infacted bands HEIMATAERDE and REAPER or the German hard EBM attack PAINBASTARD with a good remix of one of the most skillful pieces "System Failed".
This DCD was mainly created not only to collect a compilation for the lazy or drunken DJ, it is designed to break boundaries in between electronic music genres which are maybe present. Target is the audience which is a bit open-minded to electronic music with the will to check out something new. So for them there might be a rich amount of diverse sounding tracks. For the experienced users of this music this comp is only interesting for its amount of alternative versions or unreleased remix stuff here. A special hint I would not left unspoken: people mostly would like to see something which can be called ART, something more special than an ordinary white cover with some blue plugs... So go and check for yourself.

CD 1
1. Ascension (Extended) - [:SITD:]
2. Giftraum (FMix) - Diary Of Dreams
3. Chrome (Soman RX Longer) - VNV Nation
4. Revolution Of The Pigs (Advanced Pigrevolution ...) -S.K.E.T.
5. Apathy - Spetsnaz
6. Nailed [V 2.0 Dance] - Diskonnekted
7. Heart Of Steel (Riot In Metropolis Mix) - Analogue Brain
8. Spirits Of Crime (Live In Israel) - Hocico
9. Fulfil My Rage - Individualdistanz
10. Aspiration Feed - Grendel
11. The Irreparable - Glis feat. J.-L. De Meyer
12. Mystic Places (Advanced Electronixx Version) -Les Anges de la Nuit
13. The Rebel - The Promise
14. Menschenfresser (Club Mix) - Melotron
15. Razorwire (Modified Mix) - Mesh
16. First Day (Radio Edit - Clean) - Timo Maas
17. We Are The Ones - Zombie Girl

CD 2

1. Bleed For Us All - Suicide Commando
2. Time Up Your Chips And Circuits (Electric ...) - Implant feat. Anne Clark
3. Pusher (US Remix) - Soman
4. You Want It (Dave Clarke Remix) - Fixmer & McCarthy
5. Killing Ground (AE4 Remix) - Funker Vogt
6. My Revenge On The World (Out Out Extended Remix) - Ayria
7. Exterminate Annihilate Destroy (Reclubbed) - Rotersand
8. Chant 64 - Replicant
9. Black Metal (Original) - Ascii.Disko
10. Walkman - Welle Erdball
11. No Nothing Never (6:30 AM Edit) - File Not Found
12. Musikerhaende (Uncut Version) - Heimataerde
13. Totengräber (Orthodox Version) - Reaper
14. Sytem Failed (SD-RAM Mix) - Painbastard
15. The Grudge (Gothminister Remix) - Mortiis

AntiQuark: SkyDancer

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
 Edit (2268)
Nov 07 2005
Artist: AntiQuark (@)
Title: SkyDancer
Format: CD
Label: Pet Set Records
Rated: *****
This is the first time I've the opportunity to listen to Antiquark. The female duo formed by Ant (she's coming from the same city of mine,, Torino and she moved years ago to USA to study sharks) and Maren. Maren is also the singer of the Peppermints (see my review of their latest CD), she performed on several musical videos and she also have a job as a model. We have a different perception of what a model can be and it's so good to see one having good tastes about music :). Anyway... SkyDancer is their latest CD and it is a mini album containing seven new tracks along with four remixes of old tracks. The new tracks are a sort of electro extravaganza where dance beats meet experimental solutions under a punk attitute. I think that an important part of the the band's experimental attitude derive from the presence of Raul, their performer / postmodern dancer. He's the role model of the cover of the CD and he's the band's incarnation of the SkyDancer. The main track, in fact, is titled "SkyDancer (Raul our lady of love)". The four remixes see "Planet X" reworked by Marc Urselli (the other side of Chain D.L.K.), "Nulear suicide" (thanks to Tleilaxu Music Machine), "Loopoff effect" (remixed by Seven Lies About Girls) and "Chain mail" (remixed by Geoffro). The remixers tend to dilate the original track giving to them an industrial e.b.m. touch (Marc's one), a techno dancey mood (Tleilaxu's), an experimental gabber version (Seven Lies About Girls) and a electronic experimental version (thanks to Geoffro). Musically I can't compare Antiquark music to any other band, because of their attitude of being open to different form of music/art. I can only tell you that I really enjoyed this release and I can suggest you to give it a try.

FUNKER VOGT: Navigator

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
 Edit (2263)
Nov 02 2005
Artist: FUNKER VOGT (@)
Title: Navigator
Format: CD
Label: Synthetic Symphony
Distributor: SPV
Rated: *****
With a new studio album of FUNKER VOGT it is a bit like in that classic short movie Dinner For One": same procedure as every year! But can we blame a band which has found a way to get that much success, that the band members can easily take the music to pay all bills? Should we really advise the band to stay dark and unknown in the underground through a change of the musical direction? I think we can’t do so. Yes, I would like to hear something new and refreshing, or something what could be called a musically risk. Unfortunately it is easily possible to exchange some tracks taken from the predecessor "Survivor" with some tracks available here. Nothing new also for the lyrical part, the whole stuff is still inspired by military things of victory or defeat, of known and unknown heroes – some track names already give you a hint, like "Killing Ground", "Fallen Hero" or the rather melodic piece "Friendly Fire". Yes, I am really hungry for something special from them, but as I said – can we really blame this band for trying to milk the cow as much as possible? This been said I was finally a lot surprised with the track "Für Dich", which is written by the singer Jens Kästel. It is a smooth and calm track with a huge emotional message – I would interpret the birth of an own child to be the reason for this track. All of you (and me included...) who have already seen or will soon see the wonder of a birth and the start of that big thing called "life" will dig this anthem a lot! So the greedy fans of this band will be very pleased with this whole album, globally said, it doesn’t offer anything new what can be considered as a development for the band – with the big and emotional exception named "Für Dich", which speaks out of my heart (Danke, Jens).

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