Music Reviews



Binalog Frequency: Cosmic Boogie

 Posted by George Embryonik (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Aug 20 2012
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Artist: Binalog Frequency (@)
Title: Cosmic Boogie
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Binalog Productions (@)
Distributor: Juno
Rated: *****
'Binalog Frequency', has always been consistent. His high quality musical output, is obvious, through his remixes and solo albums. He has offered many views of his musical personality and some deeper, darker aspects of it, as well (which is always good). His latest two - track 'Cosmic Boogie' single, finds him in a more upbeat mood, though, while staying true to his electrofunk background, as always. 'Cosmic Boogie' starts off slowly with a beat and haunting pads sneaking up on the listener, until the thunderous funky bassline kicks in. From then on is pure infectious electrofunk beauty, with off-beat hi-hats and distorted lead synthlines. There is a 'disco mix' of the track that is equally infectious taking advantage of all the stomping elements of the original version, in a 4/4 manner with extra variations and an 'in your face' attitude that simply works! The production is crisp and straightforward, as always, and the arrangement is kept minimal, for maximum impact. The key element here is 'FUN'. There's even a neon-star on the cover artwork! Try it!
Aug 05 2012
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Artist: Death 0f Self (@)
Title: Embracing The Things We Hate About Ourselves
Format: CD
Label: Bugs Crawling Out Of People (@)
Rated: *****
Merciless transcriptions of a personal tormented journey in the most anaesthetized parts of human nature ("emerging from the darkness/clawing from the inside/it whispers in my ear/and tells me/what I must do/and who I must become/to find my way/to find the answer", so says the initial song "No Control"), sung through brutishly distorted cries, which look like duetting with what seems to be the (mostly robotic or spectral) malicious voice of conscience (particularly in songs like "Solitude", "Empty" or "Broken Glass" - the one I musically prefer of the whole album -) or some other foreign body turned into interlocutor/defier (just like it happens in the fierce clattering of "The Machine" focusing on the controversial relation between man and machines, in the woebegone lacerations of "Now You Know", in the piercing lyrics inspired from fresh and pulsating scars of "Meaningless"), a gruelling and anguishing exploration ("was it all for nothing?/it was not supposed to be like this/gasping for air/reaching for the answer/each step becomes more terrifying" words echoed by the above-mentioned second voice with the distraught realization "I'm so tired, I'm tired of trying, I'm tired of the walls, the lies, the fear" in the song "The Edge") which couldn't be but by the disquieting lack of aptitude in understanding other people by society, whose main concern seems to be the blind and constant demonstration of a feigned well-being as suggested by dark humour-tinged sociopath lyrics of "More Interactions With People", written and performed by It-Clings, artistic identity of Squid, the founder of Bugs Crawling Out Of People, the label which supports this release by Death Of Self, whose final moral and enfranchisement have been celebretade in the final song "Realizations", where DOS furiously replies "never mind morality/never mind right or wrong/never mind conscience /never mind insecurity" when the pitched voice ask "so, what have we learned?". Even if it's based on personal experiences of the musician, I don't discard the possibility some listeners could personify or symphatize with one of the two interlocutors due to the gradual involvement in this inner battle. The unwinding of this livid plot runs on punching beats, piercing acute sounds, rough and oscure synth-brass sections as well as many hooks taken from new EBM and electro-industrial canons, which immediately grabbed the attention of this Canadian "bug-busters", which could bet on the possibility "Embracing The Things We Hate About Ourselves" is going to grab attention of many fans of the genre.

DVS NME: Metastasis

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Jul 29 2012
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Artist: DVS NME (@)
Title: Metastasis
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
A year after the digital debut released by Transient Force titled "Begin Sequence", DVS NME is back with a new album titled "Metastasis". This time Johan self-produced a CD containing eleven new mid tempos instrumental tracks. On this new one the sound of DVS NME has slightly changed. Maybe because of the production or maybe because of the sounds used but, on the previous album tracks like "Superluminal" or "Astrogate" made me think about Dopplereffekt or Drexciya. Those tracks had complex rhythms and multi-layered synth lines but the sound on 'Metastasis' isn't giving me that razor like effect. Bass and mid frequencies have been enhanced and to me it seems that Johan kept distortion under control. While composing the new tracks, I think that emotionally he has been inspired by different themes, as suggested by the heart dissection containing mechanical parts that you can find on the cover. If on "Begin Sequence" we had a robot willing to visit new lands and to do new experiments, on "Metastasis", we have a human being who is experiencing new life facts. We have titles like "Disappeared", "Apart", "Solitary", "Disassembled" and "Redesigned" which don't let us fantasize much about what the themes are. Musically, "Metastasis" is a bit more sidereal sounding but it contains always the electro elements you would expect to find into a DVS NME release. We will await this space explorer coming from Colorado watching the sky from our window, just to find out what his next mission will be....

Redrum Alone: De Redrum Natura

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Jul 29 2012
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Artist: Redrum Alone (@)
Title: De Redrum Natura
Format: CD
Label: Ufo Solar
Rated: *****
After one year and half here we are talking about Redrum Alone again. The Italian duo formed by Tommaso "Qzerty" Danisi e Piero "Peet"Pappalettere is now delivering through Ufo Solar their first full length "De Redrum Natura". The album contains eight new original songs plus two covers: Joy Division's "She's Lost Control" and CCCP's "Emilia Paranoica" (track which has been included on a compilation sold along with XL magazine and printed in 80000 copies). Since the last time I talked about them, they played into several clubs and festivals around Italy, opening for international acts like Kruder & Dorfmeister, T.raumschmiere, Tying Tiffany, Aucan, etc and they also became Waldorf endorser. The new album is convincing me more compared to the previous EP and it sounds also more powerful and catchy. The whole sound and the songwriting is recalling me Digitalism and I like to think that in Italy we have a band that sounds that kind of electro dance which is based a lot on good melodies and cool sounds. The album opens with a short self named track where vocoder, dry sounds and arpeggios welcome the listener. "RevolutionAir" is a nice mix of arpeggios, fat distorted bass lines, 4/4 rhythms and melodic vocoder filtered vocals. There are different of their tracks that would please also the lovers of the French electro sound (Daft Punk, Justice or Kavinsky to name a few), check: "Remote", "No Guitars Were Used In Making These Tracks" or "MidNight". "User Interface", instead, mix hard electro beats, in levare distorted bass lines, electro house pads and filtered vocals and it sounds just nice. The two covers a really good as they took the original versions and transposed them into the Redrum Alone world changed them a lot but keeping alive their spirit. You almost won't recognize "She's Lost Control", but if you aren't purists, you'll love this energetic upbeat version. Is strange to hear "Emilia Paranoica" with cool arpeggios and dance rhythms but this doesn't matter, because it sounds good. As you can imagine by what I wrote, I liked a lot "De Redrum Natura" and if you love cool melodic songs with dance attitude give to this album a chance and go to see the duo live, they are playing around...

Parade Ground: A Room With A View

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
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Jul 17 2012
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Artist: Parade Ground
Title: A Room With A View
Format: Tape
Label: Other Voices Records
Rated: *****
Formed by the brothers Jean-Marc and Pierre Pauly in 1981, in Brussels, Belgium, Parade Ground channelled their energies into energetic music made of hard beats, paced synth lines and the melodic voice of Jean-Marc. In 1982 they participated to the Nationale Rockmeeting LP compilation and soon after they met Daniel B. and Patrick Codenys of Front 242, beginning a collaboration that is still active. In all these years, the band has on their back only two full length releases. Their first album "Cut Up" was released by Play It Again Sam Records, as well as their following singles released on 1987/88. For they second official album "Rosary", we have to wait until 2007, but a couple of months ago, Minimal Maximal, released the band's 1989 lost album, titled "The 15th Floor". Their real second album. This tape "A Room With A View", gathers songs recorded in 1988 that, as far as I know, were unreleased. The eight tracks mix e.b.m. atmospheres with new wave songwriting structures. It's like they felt the urge to release their energy without forgetting to give to the songs something more to the "in your face" approach. In this way, we have semi synthpop tunes with upbeat hard rhythms, melodic vocals, strong bass lines and some dance moments like on "Cursed By My Name". They sometimes recalled me Fad Gadget but with more melody. You can check the whole release here http://othervoicesrecords.bandcamp.com/album/vox-15-mc-a-room-with-a-view.


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