Music Reviews

PNDC: Fading Away

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 31 2008
Artist: PNDC (@)
Title: Fading Away
Format: CD
Label: Listen Loudest / Slusaj Najglasnije
Rated: *****
Released by the Croatian D.I.Y. label Listen Loudest, FADING AWAY is the first album by Pndc (a.k.a. Pendrag Nedic). Member of the Serbian electronic ambient band Erogenius, Pendrag started working at some songs of his own in mid 2007, then he published some instrumental tracks on his myspace page. After receiving a good feedback he decided it was worth developing them. He was lucky enough to find a guy called Thanos (a.k.a. Housework) who was interested into collaborating by singing and writing lyrics. The fact is that Thanos not only is from Greece but he also lives there and the duo did everything through the net. The final result is really good and the particular electro wave songs produced, sound fresh and introspective. Listening to the album a couple of times I thought I was listening to an hybrid version of Bowie/Nick Cave dealing with dissonant electro-wave songs. Pendrag song construction seems to be always in search of a particular solution (sometimes experimenting also, like on "Oh my God it's true") which could make sound the song more interesting. At this purpose you can find reversed guitars, flangered bass guitar, catchy sinth lines, etc. The really deep and convincing vocals provided by Thanos are doing the rest and all these things make of FADE AWAY a perfect CD for whose who are needing something new into the new wave scene. Check some songs at the myspace link provided and you'll fall in love with "Disco disco" or "Pick up your tears". Mind that on the CD there aren't fill ins!

VVAA: Muzyka Voln

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 30 2008
Artist: VVAA
Title: Muzyka Voln
Format: CD
Label: Muzyka Voln (@)
Rated: *****
Muzyka Voln is the name of the Zhelezobeton sub-label and MUZYKA VOLN is also the title of their first compilation containing twelve bands/tracks coming from Russia which focus their sound on industrial/dark-ambient/drones music. First of all I must say that lately it is a bit difficult to find a dark-ambient project which is capable of creating a track which is able to catch your attention bringing you down through its world made of hypnotic and throbbing sounds. Also this compilation prove what I'm saying and if some projects composed their track using uniquely few humming sounds creating a dark atmosphere which grew little by little its intensity, some others tried to distinguish themselves adding a bit of melody, a treated guitar or some industrial sounds. The bands which convinced me most are: Kshatriy, Exit In Grey, Closing The Eternity, Nectropolis, Anthesteria feat. Kay?, Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum, Bardoseneticcube and Remoteband and eight out of twelve isn't that bad. Here you can check some sound excerpts and here's the track-list:
1. Kshatriy - Orgamis
2. Exit In Grey - Kosmorders
3. Closing The Eternity - Autumn Dream
4. Hum - Halo Magnetic
5. Necropolis - At the End of the Universe
6. Cisfinitum - Moon Room
7. Anthesteria feat. Kaj? - In Gedanken an Russisches Drone
8. Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum - :Crystalline:Earth:
9. Instant Movie Combinations - Boiler Pipe
10. Bardoseneticcube - The Castle in a Fog
11. Polaris - Prickle of the Emerald Moon
12. RemoteBand - Untitled

SONNE HAGAL: Jordansfrost

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 28 2008
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Artist: SONNE HAGAL (@)
Title: Jordansfrost
Format: CD
Label: Luftschutz Entertainment
Distributor: Tesco Distribution
Rated: *****
Three years after the "Nidar" mini album (which contained the beautiful "The Three Ravens") Sonne Hagal is back with a new full length titled JORDANSFROST. For the creation of what is a masterpiece (once you'll listen to it you'll agree with me) Andreas has been helped out by many friends of the neo-folk scene. Of The Wand And The Moon (Kim Larsen), In Gowan Ring (B'eirth), Waldteufel (Marjus Wilff and Tyrsson), Ernte (Will I and Rose, the same people who years ago run the Cthulhu Records label), Lux Interna (Joshua and Kathryn), Darkwood (Henryk Vogel), Black Sun Productions (Pierce), Sonnentau (Andreas Arndt), 44 Martyn, Daniel Busch and Unto Ashes (Michel Laird) gave their contribute on vocals, accordion, flute, trumpet, violin, keyboards and composition creating a choral work full of phatos. A work which definitely sounds Sonne Hagal despite the many people who worked at it. Also the three covers available are the result of a collaboration, because they have been painted by Fabrice of Divine Comedy Records. JORDANSFROST (which indicate the alternation of light and darkness extended to all the possible meanings: seasons alternation as well as the birth/death cycle) contains twelve acoustic songs which are inspired by Northern mysteries and which lyrically use rediscovered poems as well as original lyrics (some are written in English and the remaining ones in German language). The overall atmosphere is enchanting and it's really different from the previous debut album "Helfahrt" because on JORDANSFROST we have joyful tracks as well as dark moments which sound like they are born to be "carved in stones". Here the tracks are something more than evocative acoustic ballads and this result has been reached thanks to all the people involved: playing a snare drum here and a trumpet there they helped giving life to twelve gems creating convincing arrangements which is making sound each song fresh and inspired.

NERONOIA: Il Rumore Delle Cose

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 26 2008
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Artist: NERONOIA (@)
Title: Il Rumore Delle Cose
Format: CD
Label: Eibon Records (@)
Distributor: Aural Music
Rated: *****
I listened few tracks of the first Neronoia debut album which has been released three years ago always by Eibon Records and I had mixed emotions about that one. Maybe I found it a little too nihilistic into his depression mood. Anyway, this second album born always as a Canaan/Colloquio collaboration and titled IL RUMORE DELLE COSE in my opinion succeeds into focusing in a better way the sound and the atmospheres of the project. The ten untitled tracks are capable of creating a sort of doom/new wave crossover passing through post noise rock. The treated drums and guitars are able to create a functional soundtrack to the Italian spoken word performed by Gianni. While you listen to tracks like "VII" is like you are falling into a well made of melodies and mud. It's a particular sensation where you seem cuddled by your own fears while distantly there's a band who slowly plays a nice tune. Despite the fact that the tracks play with the same atmospheres and rhythms the band is able to keep your attention awaken using sometimes a catchy refrain or a particular mix of sounds (as the use of reversed guitars along with synths) which make sound the whole album fresh and interesting. Also the choice of avoiding titles is somehow coherent with the whole concept where IL RUMORE DELLE COSE ("Things' noise") is the recording of a moment which you won't live again. Everything is making a sound but you could not be capable of listening to it...
Title: Kakugo
Format: CD
Label: Prikosnovenie (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Four years after "Absurdity" the Japanese duo Jack Or Jive is back with a new work titled KAKUGO. The album takes inspiration from Bushido's "kakugo" concept which tells to think about death differently: Kakugo" does not suggest violence, it tells us to think of death and don't do honor-less acts in everyday life. The album is divided into twelve tracks which during almost one hour of length create tense and melancholic soundscapes made of ambient electronic pads, experimental intuitions and characterized by the presence of the particular voice of Chako. Her voice isn't perfect but it is functional to the creation of the sort of ambience which translate into music people's sorrow. The track I appreciated most is "It can't be reset". A song which recalled me Cocteau Twins atmospheres but here the dreamy atmospheres are turned into nightmares.

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