Music Reviews

Negative Format: Cipher Method

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Feb 03 2003
Artist: Negative Format (@)
Title: Cipher Method
Format: CD
Label: Sector 9 Studios (@)
Negative Format are ready for us with a new eleven tracker that once more shows their great ability in creating electronic techno music. Personally I find "Cipher Method" to be superior to its predecessor. It's like if it kinda steps back to observe, it's a little more laid back but in a floating way. It is still pounding like a motherfuckin' Love Parade! It delivers well done electro-dance with a mittle-european flavor to it. The voices are treated, as we are used to, mainly through vocoding, distortion, phasing. The tracks have rich and consistent beats between 129 and a whopping 170 bpm ("Algorythm" introduces a great variation on NF's usual rhythmical material with a deep dubby bass line and almost true drum'n'bass grooves!) and the song structures are solid and coherent. There are several samples to be found (for example from Kevin Costner's latest movie "Dragonfly" in the song "Schema", as well as other Hollywood material) too. This record proves once more that they know how to evolve, they don't get stuck, they work on new sounds and are creative. Without such a rich palette and such a knowledgeable use of these sonorities they wouldn't stand the competition, instead they do. There's not much else to say, Negative Format always come through as a skilled techno-tronic act that has a lot to bring to the table and knows how to play its cards. You can bet they'll take the house if you give them a chance.

OCTEX: Idei Lahesna

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Dec 29 2002
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Artist: OCTEX (@)
Title: Idei Lahesna
Format: CD
Label: Tehnika (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Octex aka. Jernej Marusic has been experimenting with music equipment since the second half of the 90s. Dealing with different forms of electronic experimentations he decided to focus his efforts on the Octex project. Taking influence from Detroit and Berlin techno, dub and ambient Jernej released the first track for the Electrotehnika Slavenika compilation, which later mutated into Tehnika 1, and received great response in the public. His first CD, IDEI LAHESNA is built on the idea of composing a modern soundtrack for nowadays cities. The eleven tracks are moving through cyclic structures and digital sounds with mutating structures which go from rhythmical obsessions to looped passages passing through sounds similar to the first Biosphere's period. Even if these kind of sounds can be filed under the techno genre the project is showing much wider influences such as ambient and someway experimental music. Try it...


 Posted by KlingKlangBedlam   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Dec 18 2002
Artist: VV.AA
Format: CD
Label: 3D Vision Records
Distributor: 3D Vision Records
This is the sister CD to the Jetlag’ CD from 3dVision, and is, of course, the mellow ambient techno/chill side of the compos. The CD from the first track onward is very relaxing and yet energetic at the same time, beating the hell out of those cheap ass "Pure Chill" compos I see in Starbucks and Kmart. Though every artist shifts in style gradually it overall reminds me of NEWT, the Haujobb/Forma Tadre side project. Overall, this is my favorite of the two comps. Rating: 10

Starving Cell: Starving Cell

 Posted by KlingKlangBedlam   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Dec 09 2002
Artist: Starving Cell
Title: Starving Cell
Format: CD
Label: Flesh Made Word
Distributor: Flesh Made Word
Yet another (I got 5 CD’s at once to review from these guys) strange excursion into ambent and industrial territory from Flesh Made Word, this time by Starving Cell. After the onslaught by the Antigen Shift/Detrirus CD, the opening calm is a weird shift of mood, but it switches over to an odd paced breakbeat rhythm ala Hexer (Haujobb side project), with a strange echoed reverb through the back mixing in with it. The sound kinda reminds me of a heavier version of Autechre’s "Confield" both having an odd time signature and rhythm pattern. The whole CD has a weird cross between from drum n bass striahgt and true to rhythmic noise, sometimes crossing and crashing into one another within seconds. That is one thing I learned to love about Haujobb, and now in the Flesh Made Word sound: that these artists have the same rhythm and drum lines for no ore than 20 seconds. Rating: 9.

Contra: social darwinism

 Posted by KlingKlangBedlam   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Dec 09 2002
Artist: Contra
Title: social darwinism
Format: CD
Label: d trash records
Distributor: d trash records
Psychotic style drum n bass along the lines of a distorted Photek or Squarepusher, very harsh, very industrialized and aggressive. Also planted underneath are very skillfully executed and trickily timed synth patterns laying under the noise, whereas that is lacking in the world of noise-techno. At times this reminds me of a cross between prior day Evil’s Toy minus the vocals and a more upbeat version of Gridlock’s dark drum n bass masterpiece "Further". Rating: 9.

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