Music Reviews



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...
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Artist: JACK OR JIVE
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.

ABBILDUNG: Two Sphere Geometry

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 25 2008
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Artist: ABBILDUNG
Title: Two Sphere Geometry
Format: CD + DVD
Label: Essentia Mundi (@)
Rated: *****
Limited to 100 copies TWO SPHERE GEOMETRY is the latest CD of the Romanian dark ambient project Abbildung. The eight tracks of the album are based on a multi layered structure where drones, voices, treated guitars and electronic sounds (mostly pads) are gathered to form a growing primordial magma made of sound waves. Tracks like the opening "Dark pole rising" or the really good "Decreasing entropy attractor" have a certain viral effect which make them change constantly while the rhythm and the samples make them more "accessible" and less abstract. For this reason I found that they are able to create a better ambience and Abbildung did the right thing by using "Decreasing entropy attractor" as base to the four minutes of the DVD video titled "Two sphere world" (the video is based on the contraposition of nature and electrical experiments visual extracts). Only the fourteen minutes track "Call of the hypersphere" didn't convinced me too much because of the minimal approach which don't give anything else than the usual humming drone structure.

CAPRICE: Kywitt! Kywitt!

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Mar 24 2008
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Artist: CAPRICE
Title: Kywitt! Kywitt!
Format: CD
Label: Prilosnovenie (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Three years after the third "Elvenmusic" part, Caprice are back with a new masterpiece of faerie music. For this new "tale", Anton Brejestovski took inspiration from the Grimm brothers tales translated by Zhukovsky. This time the elves world is seen under the human eyes and for this reason it could seem also more hallucinatory than the usual. Anyway, I was really surprised with the opening song of the album, because "Dundellion wine" is a really good melting pot where you can find progressive rock, jazz, electronic arrangements and, as usual, the beautiful Inna Brejestovskaya's voice. Really amazing. Another track which see the band's members experimenting a little with new sounds is the short "More", where piano soft notes are joined by ambient sounds. Also "Peggy" and the closing "Fae fae fae fae fae fae fae" have an unusual sound for the band, because they are a sort of folk rock ballad with no orchestral sounds (and the latter one has also quite a funny/joyful sound with elves playing around). The remaining tracks have, as usual, a folk traditional musical and lyrical influence with great orchestrations or, as for "Philomel with melody" we have folk melodies played with cello and flute with the addition of a jazzy contrabass. KYWITT! KYWITT! is a less classical sounding album and sees the band reaching a new level into their art.


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