Music Reviews



Moldover: Live Remashing

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Jan 30 2006
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Artist: Moldover (@)
Title: Live Remashing
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
I don't know what the hell is wrong with today's labels... When I see a band like this still unsigned, I get mad angry and wonder what's wrong with the picture... I even think about starting my own label to make things right, but you know what they say, been there, done that, not worth the hassel in today's industry (of course I can see how clearing and licensing of an album like this might be the hellish reason why Moldover wasn't picked up yet)... Then again, maybe this Brooklyn-artist actually is indiependent by choice and has the balls to prefer remaining un-affiliated, so that he can do whatever he wants. Wherever the truth lies, Moldover's CD has been following me around the world for the last 30 days and I've listened to it more than any other CDs. It's been in my car, in Europe, in my home CD player in my head... It's too soon in the year to make bold "best CD of the year" type of statements, but this is definitely the best CD I've heard so far and I am wholeheartedly giving out my first 5 stars in 2006 (which I do rarely...). But let's cut the chit chat right to the chase and get down to business. What is so special about this guy?
Mash-ups, or the art of mixing together two differnt songs, usually the instrumental version of one song and the vocals of another one, by matching tempo and pitch (like you might have heard DJ Dangermouse doing in "The Gray Album", where he mashes up Jay Z's "The Black Album" with The Beatles' "White Album") have become a pretty popular phenomenon lately, but Moldover takes it to a whole new level because he actually does the shit live, on the fly, real-time!
It's relatively easy if you do it on your home Pro Tools system and you spend hours tweaking, pitch-correcting and time-stretching until it sounds just right, but to do it with a laptop equipped with Abelton Live and Native Instrument's Reaktor software, requires a whole other new set of skills that obviosuly very very few people master. That is exactly the area of expertise where Moldover excells and exceeds your every expectation.
His "Live Remashing" features 27 mash-ups featuring Tom Petty & the Hearthbreakers, Billie Holiday, Beastie Boys, AC DC, Janis Jopin, Edgar Winter, Dr. Dre (Snoop Dog), Steve Miller, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page, Prince, Michael Jackson, James Brown, Kool & the Gang, Steppen Wold, Jane's Addiction, Nirvana, System of a Down, Dick Dale & his Del Tones, A-Ha, Johann Pachelbel, NIN, Violent Femmes, Black Sheep, Metallica, Chirstina Aguilera, Kermit the Frog as well as samples from countless movies including Pulp Fiction, Pi, some Kevin Spacey flick I don't remember the name of, and god (or Moldover) only knows how many other bits and pieces that I haven't recognized (besides the ones I just haven't mentioned to keep this review acceptably short).
NYC's Moldover has been playing guitar in various bands, spinning records in clubs and even built his own mobile dance club, hauled it to Nevada's Burning Man festival just to burn it afterwards. That's what I call an inspired dude who gets things done!
As far as I am concerned, I'll try to go see him perform as soon as I can... As far as you are concerned, stop messing around and get this CD from his website right away! There are no excuses that will hold up here... "Live Remashing" is an encyclopedia of modern pop culture in sound format, it is the milestone of ultimate digitally-assisted live performance, it is the best example of how to use modern technologies to enhance and extend musicianship and artistic vision, it is the new form of DJ-ing, it is two thumbs up, straight up!
PS The MC Esher-inspired and reworked (or should I say remashed?) front cover is very cool as well!

Mana Erg: Red Dust

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Jan 30 2006
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Artist: Mana Erg (@)
Title: Red Dust
Format: CD EP
Label: Glyptique (@)
Rated: *****

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Mana Erg's UK-based Italian mastermind Bruno De Angelis is at it again, but the result is very different from his previous undertakings. The new Mana Erg EP "Red Dust" (released by French Organic's sub-imprint Glyptique records) will stone you with its juxtaposition of different genres, and in the short space of only three tracks, will attempt to sound like Marylin Manson, Clock DVA and a number of other bands you might think ok... Basically, the main difference is the catchiness of the tunes and their intrinsic pop melodies. Mana Erg is trying to preserve his aura of mystic and experimental "out-there-ness", while reaching out for more listeners with attractive, affordable and approchable quality music heavily influenced by electronica, industrial rock and dark. No need to worry about BDA selling out, he knows what he is doing and he does it well. Even if I personally preferred his previous work, "Red Dust" stands out in the crowd of listening-friendly electronic music products and definitely retiains its edge and its vision for quality.Read the Mana Erg inteview by David Weiss at http://www.chaindlk.com/interviews/index.php?interview=ManaErg

AIRPORT 81: Put Your Squares Together

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Jan 25 2006
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Artist: AIRPORT 81
Title: Put Your Squares Together
Format: CD
Label: Breathing Room Records (@)
Rated: *****

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Airport 81 is a new band coming from San Diego. The trio is formed by A-Drive, Sneaky Pete and Tape and they sound is an hybrid of Gang Of Four, punk and arcade games. Tracks like the opening "Bonus Jack" or the following "Hectometre" sound like Pacman formed his own punk band. The bass guitar and the drums form the main structure of the song while the keyboard (that command a sample machine, I guess) spreads out noises, low-fi melodies, 8-bit samples of blasting bombs and so on. The result is really intriguing and while listening to it I hear echoes of Jesus Lizard and Slint but the samples make the tracks turn into something more personal. It's like a soundtrack for surf movies of the future, where the little aliens from Space Invaders are the main actors. The middle section of "Dequencer" remember me also early Gary Numan but at the end it turns into somethnig else. There are some moment where the sound turns experimental (like on "New Yoko") but after that the run to the sea made out of transistors starts again. Vocals are rare but you don't need them, there's so much to listen to that you won't notice. Amazing! You should check this out definitely...
Jan 25 2006
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Artist: INTO THE HOLE (@)
Title: Do You Want To Play With Me?
Format: MCD (Mini CD)
Label: Alchemist Fanatix (@)
I already reviewed Into The Hole's DO YOU WANT TO PLAY WITH ME two times already (check http://www.chaindlk.com/reviews/index.php?id=1098 and http://www.chaindlk.com/reviews/index.php?id=860) when Alessandro first sent me the demo and then the definitive version of his six tracks MCD. This new release printed by Alchemist Fanatix Records has got no differences from the latest one that Alessando sent me, so basically my mind hasn't changed since then. His music gathers electronic, punk and wave influences and a better production would help a lot into showing that Into The Hole's music is deserving a wider audience. I hope that the worldwide promotion that Alchemist Fanatix is doing will help them releasing something new soon.