Music Reviews



PORTABLE PALACE: POLUS

 Posted by Julia Soultanova (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Oct 28 2002
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Artist: PORTABLE PALACE (@)
Title: POLUS
Format: CD
Label: Gravitonium (@)
The album «Polus» released in 2001 is a stunning example of psycho-acoustic music. Creators of the album - the trio Portable Palace do not limit themselves to just the acoustic media. Instead, they employ various chemical reactions and optical phenomena that nature is so rich in. The music on this CD is only one side of Portable Palace’s activities.Close the windows, leave yourself to your own devices, concentrate and insert this CD. This is the only way to notice all the nuances of musical compositions found on «Polus». The sound on the very brink of human perception, never fading out completely while never developing it into a crescendo, without any jumps or frantic rhythms. The long curve of otherworldly energy is constantly crossing the composition cutting out anew the settled outlook.So, the lightning must exist. The primordial energy of the Cosmos. It leaves its stamp in the eyes of those who have seen it, like a permanent photograph stuck in one’s memory. The real event with a definitive form gains mythological shades in the music of Portable Palace. This is not a punishment or a sign from heaven telling us about the imminent apocalypse. It’s the encyphered message to the world, concealed by its own shell. The strictly underlined electrical zigzag that has ripped through the sky and is now hurrying towards the earth with the need of a quick kiss. The visual flight of this rocket lightning lasts for a few seconds, nevertheless, it holds another dimension within itself, where the seconds will last for an hour. An hour of musical metamorphoses and transfiguration. An hour of an alluring diffusion of the sacred and the profane, the serenity and the passion, the suffering and the purification, the anxiety and the tranquility, the languor and the sweet bliss. Its falling is not useless, because the finale will occur as the union of all earthly elements. It will be the time of universal harmony and the final crystallization of the ideas but the listener is here to finish off this moment with his/her thoughts. «Polus» is only a way to the truth, but it should be traveled very carefully, not missing any little change.The cosmic sound of «Polus» is a concentrated expression of the participants’ inner worlds, a musical projection of three separate individuals - those of Alexander Kalin, Eveline Domnic and Dmitriy Gelfand, hence the three-dimensional feel and the fullness of sound. The cold suspension is laid on top of the squelching surface of the dwelled landscape as the air is filled with the enveloping mist of cavernous silence. The clearness and pastoral gentleness, run through electronic millstones, is turned into a diamond-field of coloured pieces, and each piece filters the magnetic light of celestial bodies. That’s why with all of its strictness «Polus» doesn’t feel empty and homeless. It’s akin to the initiation process after which the world is never the same again.

NNT: C:/My Documents/MyMusic

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Oct 17 2002
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Artist: NNT
Title: C:/My Documents/MyMusic
Format: CD
Label: Capp Records (@)
This CD is the most schizophrenic album I listened recently, for sure! The twenty two tracks of so called "breakz / elektro / experimental" music are full of inventiveness and freshness and are capable of catch your attention in a second. Each track seems to have been composed by a deranged robot while he was trying to perform "Radioactivity" being on acid. Also the r'n'r reverbered/distorted guitar on some tracks plays slowed goth/surf tunes while electro bleeps jumps here and there. It's a shame I haven't got any news about the guy who did all this and also his webpages at www.nnt.edu.gr and www.iroiro.gr aren't reachable: it's a total mistery. Listening to "C/My Documents / My Music" it's like to listen to the whole Warp records discography pouring out of a blender having a genial cowboy as barman. Give a listen to this one if you are searching for new stimulating weird delicatessen.

BENJAMIN STAUFFER: The Tears Of Things

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Oct 12 2002
Artist: BENJAMIN STAUFFER (@)
Title: The Tears Of Things
Format: CD
Label: Somnimage (@)
Has been a pleasure for me to listen to this CD. You know, I studied piano when I was nine for five years and that has been useful to play my own composition later. Well, when I listened to THE TEARS OF THINGS I felt the same sensations of when I was into a dark room playing my piano. Stauffer's composition are light and gentle but suddenly they goes epic (like the second track "Imaginosis" which remembered me the soundtrack of the video game Warcraft) just to explore different atmospheres, where the piano is the main instrument while in the background synth pads write sinuous tunes which are capable to stop the time for fifty minutes. The tracks are someway linked one to the other and all of them are instrumentals. If you love Wim Mertens' music and you want something darker, try this one and let me know...

VV.AA.: We're on the Planet (Commemoration of the Dead by Creepy Awesome Predacious Prelacy)

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 30 2002
Artist: VV.AA.
Title: We're on the Planet (Commemoration of the Dead by Creepy Awesome Predacious Prelacy)
Format: CD
Label: Capp-Glaufx (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Greek label Creepy Awesome Predacious Prelacy's "Commemoration of the Dead - We're on the Planet" is a compilation CD with mainly local contributions of dark bands featuring The Narrator Mr. Cricket, Decadence, Ding An Sich (cmp review elsewhere on these pages), Into the Abyss (with two songs), Glaufx Garland (the main project on this label), Snowskyn, Density of State, Viridian Green (cmp review elsewhere on these pages), Alpha-Omega, Slow Motion and Cpinalonga. As I have no background info about this record, I don't know where the title originated from, but I have reason to believe (and hope) that all these people/bands ain't dead yet. The spectrum covered is wide and goes from long-pad synthetic soundscapes (The Narrator and the 14 minutes long "Sequent C" suite by Cpinalonga, offering ethnic, natural, acoustic, ritual and electronic sounds in a meditative frame); dark-folk songs in the vein of World Serpent or Kirlian Camera (Decadence, Into the Abyss); deep dark ritualistic sonorities (Ding An Sich, Glaufx, Slow Motion); my favourite three songs of the record, covering the experimental droning ambient-electro-industrial end of the spectrum (like with the murky Snowskyn composition or the great piece by Density of State sounding like :W: or the Viridian Green who here sound like a heavily pounding angry version of Dirk "Dive" Ivens meets Richard "Aphex" James); old-time dark-electronic material (Alpha-Omega). You've got it all here.

ALfa.P.: I think our Television is getting Bigger

 Posted by Marc Urselli   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Sep 30 2002
Artist: ALfa.P. (@)
Title: I think our Television is getting Bigger
Format: CD
Label: Capp-Glaufx (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Anthony.P, aka ALfa.P., is one of the leading electronic composers in Greece and as a matter of fact he is mainly known for his work as Stereo Nova. As I am not very familiar with his main project either, I cannot tell how the ALfa.P. is different, but my first approach with his music is prized by a positive impression. His electro-ambient music packs a lot of melody and beats into a unique blend of spacey and trippy atmospheric sounds grounded on minimal electronic rhythmical structures. Vocal samples of radio communications with the Shuttle, thin synthetic layers and lovely slim sounds color the playful palette of down to earth beat patterns that remind of Aphex's "Selected Ambient Works" and other innovative English music of the same kind. Ethereal, cosmic, relaxing, beautiful and soft. Sit down and chill out with this greatly enjoyable plate of delicate sounds and calm ambience... This was a truly pleasurable discovery: highly modern sounds from a country with one of the most ancient cultures in humanity.


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