Music Reviews



Geomatic: 64 Light Years Away

 Posted by Steve Mecca   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 19 2010
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Artist: Geomatic (@)
Title: 64 Light Years Away
Format: CD
Label: Tympanik Audio (@)
Distributor: Tympanik Audio
Rated: *****
This came as a delightful surprise out of the blue ' an instrumental electronic album with a lot of complexity, depth and punch. The band itself is a bit of a mystery. '64 Light Years Away' is their third album (the first, 'Control Agents' was released in 2001), they're from Amsterdam, but I haven't a clue who the musicians are. It is strictly a group identity, and neither their MySpace site, band website, one-sheet or record label offer up any individual names. Geomatic doesn't even reveal their email address!

'64 Light Years Away' is heady stuff that will carry you worlds away; a real soundtrack for the mind. It makes me think of the best of old-style Delerium, Steve Roach and Michael Stearns, but several steps beyond. In no way does this sound the least bit New Agey. There are plenty of dark ambiences, post-industrial tribal rhythms, and deep dark delicious dubby delights, often spiced by Middle Eastern melodies and the wail of the muezzin in minarets. Even within the complexity of the music (and there is a good deal of complexity), there is a spatiality in the music that approaches the cosmic. Extremely well done with a variety of sounds and sonic motifs. Haunting, eclectic and mystical would be appropriate adjectives. The album stands up to repeated plays and still you will find more layers to unravel. If ever an album deserved to be called AWESOME, '64 Light Years Away' would fit that description. It's a heavy trip that is bound to grab your psyche, blow your mind and take you to realms you've never been before. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!

Quartersized: Bingowings

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 13 2010
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Artist: Quartersized
Title: Bingowings
Format: CD EP
Label: MOMT (@)
Rated: *****
After questioning himself about politics in the previous EP, Ian, with his project Quartersized this time for his fifth release with a bit of irony take a serious problem like fat as theme, packing four tracks which thanks to sonic bass frequencies will destroy fat cells. Mixing the chants of Abelam of Papua Niugini with hip-hop beats on "Getto", covering Throbbing Gristle's "Discipline" making it turns into a dub upbeat tune, using vocals of an unknown preacher on the electronic closing "This earthly frame" and mixing acid bass lines with break beat drums and samples on the opening "Bingowings", Quartersized is playing with sounds and rhythms succeeding into sounding funny but credible at the same time. The release is available as CDr and digital download.

AUN: Black Pyramid

 Posted by Andrea Piran (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 12 2010
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Artist: AUN (@)
Title: Black Pyramid
Format: CD
Label: Cyclic Law (@)
Rated: *****
The new album from this duo is loosely inspired by the works of Enki Bilal and, so, it feature an enigmatic black pyramid in the cover. This canadian duo made a guitar driven drone music that stay between Sunn O))) (in their heaviest moments) and Vidna Obmana (in their quietest).
"Phoenix" starts with a guitar drone that slowly prepares the entering of cosmic synths, "Taurus Ten" instead is pure guitar with atmospherics as support. Black pyramid is pure cinema soundscape that took the listener into "Ursa Major" and "2095". "Ursa minor" is a quiet intro to "Shining" and this album ends with beats as a soundtrack for an escape from something, or an end to a dream.
Although they are not particularly inventive in their writing, Martin Dumais and Julie Leblanc comes with a solid work where sounds are well crafted and evocative. So, even if it's not a masterpiece, it's a nice album for all drone lovers.

System: B

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 03 2010
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Artist: System
Title: B
Format: CD
Label: Rump Recordings (@)
Distributor: VME
Rated: *****
Always busy with their personal projects (Opiate, Dub Tractor and Acustic) and after a new release under the Future 3 moniker, Anders Remmer, Thomas Knak and Jesper Skaaning are back with their first full length release as System: its title is B. The nine tracks of the album, as for the previous EP, find their roots into dub and electronic music but if on "Tempo EP" there was also a sort of jazz vein you could find between the melodic lines, B, is a mix of rich ambient sounds (do anyone named Brian Eno?), dub warm atmospheres and dubstep mid tempo rhythms with a bit of i.d.m. influences. So, while tiny melodic progressions paint a sort of melancholic canvas, complex rhythmic textures made of noises and bleeps strengthen the drum sounds. The whole result sounds like a two step record in slow motion which gives the right idea of the warm Jamaican weather transposed to Denmark...

In A Mindset: Compartments

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Industrial Noise / Power Noise / Harsh Noise
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Aug 31 2010
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Artist: In A Mindset
Title: Compartments
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Abstrakt Reflections (@)
Rated: *****
And another promising newcomer act, which installs cinematic Ambient-like synth arrangement combined with experimental and part-wise abrasive percussion elements. What surprises the most is surely the musically background of the German fellow Steven S., mastermind behind IN A MINDSET. I.A.M. has been started in 2009 and is therefore a relatively new project, but Steven has played previously in various Metal-bands (FTE, MORTHEIM) and he is still active in this genre with the project SERAPEUM. For hailing out of a relatively different music genre, he provides a really cleverly and matured kind of music work, which can be described as an Electronica/IDM-onslaught consisting of elements out of Dark Ambient and Neo-Classical influences combined with Industrial, Noise and Abstract rhythms. I tend to pick out again the often named US cult act GRIDLOCK as being a quell of inspiration, while I would too agree to name Steven's Neo-Classical influence with its bombastic tendencies ('Devastation P. 2' ' did I hear a real cello riff here???) as being the most remarkable difference. A quite good 5-track EP to hopefully soon more to be discovered stuff from this talented artist ' which fits quite well to the Abstrakt Reflection label-roster.



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