Music Reviews

Artist: VV.AA.
Title: Songs for a Child - A Tribute to PIER PAOLO PASOLINI
Format: CD
Label: Rustblade (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece
Rated: *****
Some Italian journalists have tried to make a great fuss about nothing related to this interesting issue and right and proper tribute by the Italian label Rustblade to the most prominent Italian poet and intellectual of the previous century, Pier Paolo Pasolini, whose death by mysterious homicide dated to back to 34 years ago (it was 2nd November 1975 when his body was found on the beach of Ostia, nearby Rome, being run over his own car by Giuseppe Pelosi, a 17yrs old hustler, even if the way events occurred is still substantially unexplained) has been recently remembered by some media (sometimes inaccurately). The uselessness of the above-mentioned polemics being about the presumable lack of suitability between a collection of songs belonging to the so-called avant-garde music scene and the poet's hostility towards some futile excesses of some avant-garde forms of art and literature consists in the "genetic" defect some reviewers show when they didn't manage to contextualize expression as they look too self-confident in arguing that contemporary musical languages are just a product belonging to our days. Are they so sure that Pasolini would not have appreciated this tribute as well? As I'd like to exclude the hypothesis those reviewers act like mediums chatting with the souls of dead bodies (requiescat in pacem!), I think these polemics are quite fruitless. It's even longer sensible to them asking what should be the ideal arrangement of Pasolini's thinking (in particular his ardent critic to consumerism running side-by-side to the one against bourgeois values and ambitions standing behind the picaresque neo-realism, standing out among his flunkey contemporaries) nowadays.

An elegant artwork with images provided by the portrayer Saturno Buttò and the painter Alessia Catanuto for a selection of 14 tracks (hurry up if you're interested in it as it's another strictly limited edition... just 696 copies issued... ) signed by an interesting roster of European underground scene, ranging from the renowned Coil '“ whose track Ostia (The Death Of Pasolini) propelled by an entrancing string session composed by Billy McGee, a sort of musical epigraph on the death of this illuminating as well as troublesome intellectual , was already issued in their intriguing apocalypse-inspired Horse Rotorvator '“ to the foggy dark-ambient by Bahntier '“ project by the label head of Rustblade, Stefano Rossello '“, from the touching and crystalline folk-pop by Spiritual Front to the lopsided fractured drops of diapasonic guitar of Les Mille Et Une Nuits by Ah Cama-Sotz to the corrupted string sonata on the subliming vocal samples by Pasolini himself reciting the so-called "civil poems" propelled by the creativity by Alio Die, from the electrified oddities by Teatro Satanico in Ppppetrolio and the esoteric choirs combined with ritual sound hooks by In Slaughter Natives, from the stinging dark pulsations of the obsessive downbeat by Condanna to the grand droning with some famous samples by the poet attacking fascists depicted as criminals thirsty of power by Sandblasting and so on... And even if the Supplica by Black Sun Productions could not easily be compared to the most famous one by Diamanda Galas, we have some evidence to say that maybe Pier Paolo Pasolini could appreciate it if still living as one of the most intriguing musical memorial and summary of the highlights of his scathing thought...

Brillig: The Red Coats

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 04 2009
Artist: Brillig (@)
Title: The Red Coats
Format: CD
Label: Black Rain (@)
Rated: *****
From the virginal land of Australia, it comes another interesting and genuine musical proposal, the one by four folks artistically and humanly grown in Adelaide fond on playing instruments, singing songs, old stories and fairytales, good company and some appropriate beverage (something not so dissimilar to what Irish people usually term craic!). These wizards founded a band called Brillig (a word invented by Lewis Carroll in Jabberwacky '“ one of most famous nonsense poem, in the English literature -which according to the explanation of the fictitious character Humpty Dumpty was used to name that moment of the afternoon around four' o'clock during which some people use to begin preparing dinner by broiling recipes... ) and after they spread this album entitled The Red Coats on various music journalists' desktops, they deservedly gained enthusiastic reviews for their enchanting way of combining dark-tinged folk freak hybridized by storytelling, some gentle Celtic inhalations and even a certain gipsy scent filtered through a somewhat gothic mood, which is not so pervasive or depressive. The plucking tones of a banjo and a relevant verse ("This is how the story starts") in Death At Sea (a song with a refrain sentencing "A Band Of Constant Sorrow" which seems to our musical memory something like a quote of Man Of Constant Sorrow, a famous traditional American folk song by the half-blind fiddler Dick Burnett) the listener in the sputtering and pleasant warmth of Brilig's music, giving to him a sort of visit card to collect in his/her pavilion. Entrancing ballads alternates to tales which seems to be sung in an old bad-smelling tavern where all the elements of the magical musical textures are interwoven and always find a sort of meeting point in the finger-plucked guitar emotionally played by Matt Swayne and the background but precise drumming by Ben Macklin and a slight sense of tragedy in the lyrics are just some of the key notes of their guessed formula.

Have a careful listen to The Old Captain (a sort of funereal march with a funny touch of buccaneer's collective imagination hooked by the great performance by The Drunken Bastard Choir), the lovely melancholy dropping from The Frozen Lake and the gloomy Absinthe Makes The Heart Grow Fonder in order to understand that the influences by Leonard Cohen, Nick Cave, Neil Young, Johnny Cash, The Decemberists and even The Cure (undeniable the similarities between the use of vocal chords by Matt to the one by Mr.Smith) are anything but influences as their retro style looks paradoxically original! All the lucky people which have seen them performing don't hesitate in testifying their skills in evoking the old-fashioned smell of their music even on the stage increasing our desire to see them perform out of Australian boundaries. They've begun their short European tour in Leipzig in Mat 2009, but some rumors say they'll come back touring the planet in 2010. In the meanwhile, enjoy the warmth of their Red Coats to protect from the cold breezes of the forthcoming winter, folks!

The 69 Eyes: Back in Blood

 Posted by Michelle Russo   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 03 2009
Artist: The 69 Eyes
Title: Back in Blood
Format: CD + DVD
Label: The Ends Records
Distributor: The End Records
Rated: *****
The 69 Eyes are back in blood and better then ever. The new album is called " Back in Blood " and kicks some Goth and Roll butt. I just saw the 69 Eyes live after a two year stretch in Chicago at Reggies and they put on one hell of a show, complete with new and old hits we so love. On this new album, all tracks are about vampires and have unique stories of the old and new in each one. Tales of woe, blood, hunger. pain, anguish all wrapped up in one album for the masses to sink their teeth into and taste. We begin with title track 1, " Back in Blood." which is reminscent of AC/DC bit darker than ever and Gother than ever. This song is already a crowd favourite and hit and calls to us again and again. We move on to track 3 called, " Dead N. Gone. " which is already another crowd favorite and as we speak a video is being made for it. The lyrics are beautiful, sad but true and really pull at our heart strings and won't let go until it is heard loud and clear and with sentiment. Still moving further we come to track 5 called, ' Kiss Me Undead." whcih is a sad song that tells the tale of lost loves and the damage that has been done. Jyrki sings, " " Wake me from the darkness, kiss me undead and break the chains of my life so heartless." Truly a memorable song for all ages. Next is track 6 called, " Lips of Blood." whcih is based on the movie, it's concepts and it's visuals. It has a slow. haunting, melodic Sistery sound that chills you to the bone and is a song not to forget. Coming next is track 7, already an instant hit and most watched video called, " Dead Girls are Easy." whcih is a tongue and cheek take on dead girls being easy but untouchable. Truly a video and song that will probably become another Goth anthem like " This Corossion" Moving ahead we come to track 9, " Some kind of Magick." , whcih is a catchy little tune that has bark for it's bite and got me moving and singing in my seat as I wrote this review. The track that stuck out the most is the next track 10. called " Hunger." which is based on the actual movie and haunts and taunts you with it's tragedies it projects onto you. Jyrki calls out to " Miriam." in the most dark echo that causes goose bumps up and down your spine and tears to fall down your pale face. This song is by far the best track on the album. Track 11 is called, " Suspiria Snow White and it is based on the chilling movie ' Suspiria." and all the darkness and chaos it brings all wrapped up in a little white bow only to be opened and let the madness get out. You are in for one hell of a ride. Lastly is track 12 called " Eternal " which is a slow, melodic orchestrated dark symphony in blood and terror that only shows the 69 Eyes are back in blood and back for more...~ 4 stars Michelle Russo

Dommin: Dommin

 Posted by Michelle Russo   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 03 2009
Artist: Dommin
Title: Dommin
Format: CD EP
Rated: *****
The band is called Dommin and they are on tour with The 69 Eyes. They are amazing live and have a plethora of roses and skills for their backdrops. This band hails form Los Angeles and really know how to goth and roll. The ep is cool as ever. The track that sitcks out the most is the first track off the ep called, " My Hearts, Your Hands where Dommin says in repetition, " How can I trust you?." This track calls to us and pulls on our heart strings and won't let go until it's heard loud and clear. This is sure to me a big club hit and was enjoyable live. The next trck is track two called, " Datk Holiday which has that Nightmare before X-mass meets The Misfits which really is super unique and going to be near and dear to your hearts. I really dug the rest of this ep and long to see this band again. Dommin have become up in my personal favourites and in such a short time1 ~ 4 stars Michelle Russo

Versailles: Broken Dolls

 Posted by Michelle Russo   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 03 2009
Artist: Versailles
Title: Broken Dolls
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Rated: *****
This beautiful band is called Versailles. I saw them live in Chicago and they put on a great performance live and have some cute merchandise to boot. I highly recommend to catch them for a show since they are on tour now. The album is called Broken Dolls and it is an ethereal masterpiece that is fresh and innovative complete with rhymes, reasons and rational. One of the tracks that stuck out the most on this album is track two, " Wendy's Razorblades." which is a song about a girl with hidden razorblades and her obsessions. " Singer Dianna sings to us , " Wendy's got razorblades, in a small box with a little latch is her parade." Truly dark, whimiscal and chiling to the bone. Telling the tale of blood and darkness. Another track that called out to me was the last track called, " You're My Disater." which is a morbid tale of a person we all have ran into and experienced at some point in our life. Dianna sings, " " And I run faster through this disaster." Cryptic, demeted and alive and growing stronger and stronger pulling us closer to listen and feel . This is a song that is a crowd favourite and must be experienced live. This band puts their all into what they do and are just plain amazing.Not a song on this album doesn't disappoint. You might not be in Paris but you are as close as it gets. Truly a masterpiece! wrapped up in blue and white and striving to lend a fright and delight ~4 stars

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