Music Reviews



EIGHT TO INFINITY: Aether

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Oct 05 2006
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Artist: EIGHT TO INFINITY (@)
Title: Aether
Format: CD
Label: Section 44 (@)
Rated: *****

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Formed back in 2002 and hailing from U.K. the Eight To Infinity since then participated to several compilations ("Electricity 2", "Utopia: A Tribute to Giorgio Moroder", "State of Synthpop 2005", etc.). They initially signed for Nightwave, passed to Kiss My Asterix records and since the label converged into Section 44 they finally had a chance to release their first album AETHER in 2006. Containing 13 tracks (11 if you don’t count the intro and the outro) the album has a good dancey pop/electro attitude that goes beyond the synthpop classification. Arron, Sophie, Alistair and Val created a good blend of electro wave that sounds fresh and personal. Some examples? "Mistress vinyl" is a really good pop track with a little bit of electro e.b.m. and a bit of synthpop and the alternation of male/female vocals is really catchy. Another good one is "Travelogue", an upbeat ballad with particular sounds (check the use of electro sounds and the violin interlude ) that keep the energy high and that exaltate the soft voice of Sophie. All the tracks are worth the price of the CD and Eight To Infinity score an important point and they did it with their first release. This is good, isn’t it?
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Artist: IMPLANT (@)
Title: Audio Blender
Format: CD
Label: Alfa Matrix (@)
Distributor: Soulfood
Rated: *****
Hard to believe that also Belgium’s most talented studio wizard Len Lemeire aka IMPLANT has to celebrate 10 years of being an active musician bringing out more or less constant a new studio album. This is already the 7th full length release for this act and like on almost all releases before, it can be heard something new and not discovered so far. Len produces his stuff with dedication and works hard to deliver always something special, no matter if some critical reviewers like me try hard to bind him into musically genres and sub-genres. Is there really a style out there which Len hasn’t touched or used before? The thing is, that his talent is so well and obviously present, that it doesn’t matter what kind of stuff he’s figuring out. Alfa Matrix tries to explain this musically phenomenon with descriptions like Electro-Clash, Industrial and Techno. This fits well, but here can be also found Trance, Trip-Hop, EBM and IDM/Powernoise efforts, so every track here has its special thing. Nevertheless Len decided to include some well known forces for the vocals, mostly provided by people he has produced or collaborated with. Jean-Luc de Meyer of FRONT 242 can be heard here on "The Creature", the charismatic voice of Anne Clark is featured nice on two tracks here, "Was It Always This Way" and "Your World". UNTER NULL aka Erica Dunham can be heard on "You Push Me", which is my favorite here, turning the music into a hardcoristic Powernoise monster, much harder than the latest UNTER NULL releases. We have also a decent work by Jennifer Parkin aka AYRIA on the track "Fuck Things Up". Although that Len always brings some special food for some dancefloor compatibility – and – the styles he works on and includes so well are mostly typical club-based themes – it is still fun to listen his stuff under a good pair of headphones. Be a bit open-minded – and storm your brain with this new IMPLANT!

MATRIX: Deus Lo Volt

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
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Oct 03 2006
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Artist: MATRIX (@)
Title: Deus Lo Volt
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Distributor: Icare Media Distribution
Rated: *****
A new release for the New York-based act MATRIX, it’s already their third full length album. After their time of being signed to the German Out Of Line label they needed a pause to concentrate again on producing music and on the fact that they now have to do all terms of a CD production on their own. This is a self-released and so self-funded work which continues the earlier works of this act presented on both predecessor albums "The War Is Over" and "Dreams Are Real". So you’ll get some Electropop music ranging between smooth Synthpop up to beating Futurepop, and – with "Turn To Dust" a never expected harsh Electro tune. John Sepulveda has added Ania Koslowska as a full member and she does some fine vocal performances on tracks like "Sweetest Illusion" and with a bit more aggressive tone on "Culture Of Shame", which is maybe the best known track here, because it was already featured on one of the Out Of Line label compilations. The strongest moments can be heard when both, John and Ania, start a duet like on "On Angels Wings". Also the ballad-like "Eastern Sky" gets my vote for being the most emotional piece here. Gary Suarez and Luis Brito of GASR helped out again with some further composing, guest vocals ("Senseless Game") and production – like they’ve done it on the bands’ earlier albums before. Three remix works can be heard here as well done by CGC, the Argentinean act ALIEN PRODUKT and from the Synthpop act IN-A-SENSE. So you’ll get a 73 minutes long full length CD of one of America’s most talented and experienced act around out of this genre and it would wonder me if this act got not signed soon again. Quality Synthpop music with a strong dancefloor attitude as well.

SISSY: All Under

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 03 2006
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Artist: SISSY
Title: All Under
Format: CD
Label: Global Underground (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Sissy’s debut album ALL UNDER comes out from the minds of David Trusz and Johanne Williams. The first one was already active with several singles across many of the world's most respected electronic labels, while as a remixer he has worked on Groove Armada, Trafik and The Spoons stuff. The Canadian duo created a captivating formula that sometimes remember too much the latest Portishead (check Johanne's way of singing and the similar atmosphere created by the duo mid tempos). David used vintage synthesizers to have a warm sound and the result is really convincing and it will please all the lovers of sophisticated electronic music with jazzy/noir atmosphere. Personally I liked most tracks like "Wake up", "I see you" or "In the dark" where the mysterious vein was blended with a certain upbeat rhythm or a more personal arrangement that didn't make me think about the Portishead. It is a pity that all the album wasn't like these three songs.

JUNIOR BOYS: So This Is Goodbye

 Posted by Kaf Mardel   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Oct 01 2006
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Artist: JUNIOR BOYS (@)
Title: So This Is Goodbye
Format: CD
Label: Domino Records
Rated: *****

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Records like this really thrill those listeners who are into electro stuff. No ebm attitudes, no nostalgic synth pop clones but a fresh wave of modern music. Since the very first note of Double Shadow, analogue sounds surround you, machine boxes make you feel like a human robot. The approach is somehow minimal but at the same time full of nice arrangements as well. First time is simply a masterpiece! It has got a breathtaking change of tune, an elegant clarinet and a good use of the voice. Soft arpeggiators are often in pole position (they sometimes remind me of Water Lily by Sputnika) with tiny pads behind... Dreamy danceable music for sophisticated ears.


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