Music Reviews

CRIA CUERVOS: Leitfossilen

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
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Jul 27 2005
Artist: CRIA CUERVOS (@)
Title: Leitfossilen
Format: CD
Label: Mystery Sea (@)
Rated: *****
This release follows Cria Cuervos appearance on the split sampler (together with Bio and The Beautiful Schizophonic) on the portuguese label Thisco. This new cdr is out on Mystery Sea and if you never heard about this label I think you'd better give a check to their full catalogue. I think this guy is on the right way to find his "personality" or at last that's my impression while listening his "concrete-isolationism" or maybe "field-droning" is better. Call it the way you want but the matter of "Leitfossilen" remains the same: no "melody" (just some distant drones completely absorbed by the audio "landscape"), every once in a while the scenario is randomly (not so "randomly" anyhow) crossed by new sound-sources kept in a constant and slow evolution. There's a great "bushido" (read "self-discipline") sensation carved inside these suites. Imagine Main gone "bad", or the isolationist answer to the "H.I.A.+Biosphere" project, and what if I say Thomas Koner and Eclipse caged in the ice of the arctic sea? This music somehow presents a constant duel between the composer's idea and the patience of the listeners and you can bet Eugenio Maggi should have had a lot of fun while trying to bring the listeners into a "desolated place". This record is far from the "music where something is happening all of a sudden" idea, elements are slowly and accurately combined like if it was a classical-piece. Koner once said: "My music becomes fully connected to my retirement from external life", I can't say if Cria Cuervos has the same opinion about his music, but that's the impression that "Leitfossilen" can give.
Artist: VV.AA. (@)
Title: Crash01 - Crash Frequency Compilation Vol. 1
Format: CD
Label: Crash Frequency (@)
Rated: *****
Crash Frequency is the name of a new community of bands out of Down Under, Australia. Force through unity, so could maybe the motto sound. It is target to help each out, sharing opportunities, organizing gigs, doing promotion – simply to speak with a mighty voice of a whole Electro/Industrial scene – no matter if and where the bands are signed or not. So this 10 tracks represented by the members of this community is a first mutual sign of life, I must say, a musically very diverse one. ANGELSPIT, opener on this comp and a driving force of this community start with a danceable, classic Industrial inspired track, distorted female vocals and some guitar riffs, comparable somehow with an act like MMTM. ANGEL THEORY is surely one of the most acclaimed and known act here, signed to Australia’s Ground Under Productions, and here present with a good remix done by New Zealand’s THE MERCY CAGE (signed now to DSBP) of their track "Ease the Pain". Next remarkable piece comes from THE CRYSTALLINE EFFECT which combine beautiful female vocals with Electro and some Trip-Hop elements. Globally nice done and finally no wonder, that the Polish label Black Flames picked them up. Australia’s Gothic-Rock legend IKON is also available here and can satisfy with good vocals and a rich amount of electronics. LUX VOLTAIRE prove that there is enough humor in Down Under with a track name in German "Ich liebe mein Oberheim" – well, music seems to produced with synths of this manufacturer. Best track to me – obviously following trendy hypes like Futurepop – is the piece of RESURRECTION EVE, also signed to Ground Under Productions. Well worked out sequences, no minimal structures, good vocals made an easy to following track of this mentioned genre which deserves a wider recognition. Also TANKT offer a good and diverse piece with "Bush on Fire" – be sure that they do not referring on forest fire. Unfortunately this comp stops after 10 tracks and almost 49 minutes. I can see on the members list that there are a lot of more bands involved, and especially my personal favorite STARK is missed hard here. Anyhow, there are a lot of different music styles here and a nice proof of activity and life still to come from Down Under. Next releases in co-operation of this community are already in plans, look out for this comp as well as for new releases by ANGEL SPIT, TANKT, IKON or THE CRYSTALLINE EFFECT.

Track listing:

1.ANGELSPIT – Head Kult (Head Fuck Mix)
2.ANGEL THEORY – Ease the Pain (Placebo Mix by THE MERCY CAGE)
3.THE BOM – Machine Men
5.DANDELION WINE – Begin Journey (Rejiggered)
7.IKON – Psychic Vampire
8.LUX VOLTAIRE – Ich liebe mein Oberheim (Electrolux Mix)
10.TANKT – Bush on Fire (John Von Ahlen’s Leather Mask Mix)

VV.AA.: SIGNS Sampler

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Industrial Noise / Power Noise / Harsh Noise
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jul 25 2005
Artist: VV.AA. (@)
Title: SIGNS Sampler
Format: CD
Label: Aliens Production (@)
Distributor: DSBP
Rated: *****
Folded in a paper booklet with an excellent artwork comparable with some works of Ant-Zen, here comes the newest release by the Slovakian label Aliens Productions, home of the great and well known act DISHARMONY. This compilation unites 12 more or less known bands out of the Dark Electro/Industrial and Ambient genre hailing mainly from Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Two "guests" which became friends of the label in the years are also present here with the German Dark Ambient artist POLYGON, solo effort of Ingo Lindmaier (MORTAL CONSTRAINT), and the French Ambient/Powernoise act FLINT GLASS leaded by Gwen Tremorin, who is also behind the label Brume Records. So musically you get a fine collection of dark and less danceable music stuff which will give you an up to date overview about the currently rising scene in both brother countries. What makes this release worthfull is the fact that all music here is currently only available here, so you get some previously unreleased and exclusive stuff from already known acts like DISHARMONY (new CD is out now in co-operation between Aliens Production and Monopolrecords from Czech Republic), TERMINAL STATE (released a debut in co-operation between Aliens Production and the German label Broken Seal three years ago and seem now to work on a comeback...), OXYD (the more Ambient-like side-project of DISHARMONY, debut CD is now out...) or the great Czech Electro/Industrial act DEPRESSIVE DISORDER (outstanding debut on Monopolrecords). Make your contacts out to Aliens Production to purchase this fine release. I am really looking forward to hear more dark music hailing from Eastern Europe...

Track listing:

1. ANIMA MUNDI – Oscillate
2. SAMHAIN – Subsist
3. FLINT GLASS – Deliverance
4. DISHARMONY – Repulse
5. VORTEX – Illusions
6. TERMINAL STATE – Systematic Failure
7. MINDMAP – Akusia
8. GAPING CHASM – Only Shadows will Survive
9. OXYD – Empathic Clone
10. DEPRESSIVE DISORDER – Schizophrenia
11. TENSION – Room No. 5
12. POLYGON – Wo a

Telerotor: Mobilitat

 Posted by Shaun Phelps (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jul 20 2005
Artist: Telerotor (@)
Title: Mobilitat
Format: CD
Label: Ant-Zen (@)
Rated: *****
Telerotor is the merged product of Klaus, Danijela, and Rene Jochim of Telepherique, and Roger Rotor’s own Roger Rotorboth well known staples of Ant-Zen’s ever-expanding catalogue of noise-core heavyweights. The theme behind Telerotor’s second release, Mobilitat, is based on the fast paced world of today. In particular, Mobilitat is based on the speed, and resulting convenience, of today’s mass transit systems.

Mobilitat is structured by a layer of perpetual 4X4 beats thumping away over an active, sample-heavy background showcasing the sounds of mass transit. The compositions are thick, and prone to complex keyboard textures flowing throughout as ambient noise bubbles in and out of the foreground. Tracks like "Rain Hill" and "Larmkulisse," both with more subtle 4X4 (less techno) beats, are so full of sound and content I could put them on repeat and get lost for hours.

Depending on my mood, the overly constant beats are either comforting and hypnotic or just slightly annoying. The ambient noise and delicate keys beneath the technoid beats, however; are what really win me over about Telerotor’s Mobilitat. My personal bias against techno does not stop this from being a phenomenal album. The atmospheres created by Roger Rotor and the Telepherique crew are so rich I find myself actively searching for the right context and time to listen to Mobilitat.

LVXUS: Cloudland

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jul 19 2005
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Artist: LVXUS
Title: Cloudland
Format: CD
Label: Suilven (@)
Rated: *****
This cdr release features two long tracks evolved around the "simple" idea of "ambient music". I can't say why, but these two suite (above all the opening one: "Watercourse") have a "new age" atmosphere and the sound brought to my mind "Artificial intelligence" (on Warp records) a real milestone for what concern idm and ambient music. This cdr also reminded me of a lot of electronics acts from the same period, the "know it all" among us will probably remember labels like Astralwerks, Warp, Rephlex around the first part of the nineties put out a lot of stuff with this kind of sound. Keyboard and cyclic-loop domain with a soft atmosphere suitable for "meditation" and if there's no hidden meaning behind the titles "Watercourse" and "Cloudland", define the dimension in which Lvxus are gonna bring you. Sometimes it all sounds a bit old-fashioned, but after all a lot of "glitches" and "drones" electronica tend to be uninspired and so cold that is obvious there's people searching for something different (dj Hell, Passarani for example). Without any doubt it's music that puts you in the right mood, lay down and relax.

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