Music Reviews



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Artist: TENHORNEDBEAST
Title: The Sacred Truth
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
From the depth of the most nightmarish Old and New Testament vision (the Ten Horned Beast is named before "Revelation"17:3/13:1 and "Daniel" 7:7) comes the inspiration for the TenHornedBeast, project of Christopher Walton of Endura fame. THE SACRED TRUTH is the first proper CD album of the project (Christopher released previously a couple of CDr privately and through NOTHingness REcords) and contains five magmatic drones suites. If you were used to the electronic/ambient/experimental sound of the Endura, try to put it aside as TenHornedBeast is based on a different sound/approach. At first I was surprised to read a review of this CD by Julian Cope where he compared this album to the kraut rock sound he loves so much but if you think about records like Amon Duul II's "Yeti" and to its long improvisations (the last three tracks of the CD reissued recently) TenHornedBeast sounds like a dark version of it, where classic rock instruments are treated and sound like reaped cellos or like reverbs on death corridors. Christopher on the second panel of the cover talked about a process of destruction of the standards imposed to men by modern age and his great truth is witnessing this process (I hope we'll be able to get more in depth on the forthcoming interview) and tracks like "Our lady of the lightning bolt" and "In the teeth of the woolf" seem to be its soundtrack.

POETS TO THEIR BELOVED: Embrace The Fool

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 17 2007
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Artist: POETS TO THEIR BELOVED (@)
Title: Embrace The Fool
Format: CD
Label: Equilibrium Music (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Formed by a female/male duo who met in 2003 at a Brendan Perry's workshop in Ireland, Poets To Their Beloved, after working at distance (Marcel Schiborr is from Germany and Saskia Dommisse is from Holland) are releasing through Equilibrium Music their first album titled EMBRACE THE FOOL. The CD gathers thirteen tracks which see the duo helped out by Sjanneke van Herpen, Ramona Wandollski and Michael Braun at cello/violin, bass and guitar. The duo, fortunately, even if met at a workshop held by one half of the Dead Can Dance don't try to clone the same kind of music and, in my opinion, they succeeded into creating a personal mixture of classical and folk music where percussions and strings enrich the ballads they created. If you want to know my opinion about a Dead Can Dance influence they could have, I can hear some percussions and some steel guitar sounds similar to the really early Dead Can Dance of the MLP "The garden of arcane delights". The other similarity is represented by the alternation of male/female vocals but in any case they have different styles respect the Australian duo (only Michael remembers a little Brendan Perry). The tracks are able to craft beautiful atmospheres: the first half of the album, for example, will convince you immediately of their capabilities as the opening "Embrace the fool", "Love" and "Ecstatic dance" have three different kind of atmosphere where they switch from dark folk to energetic romantic (but with a bit of mystery) moments with ease and creativity.

VV.AA: Hoera! Een Hex voor thuis!

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 08 2007
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Artist: VV.AA
Title: Hoera! Een Hex voor thuis!
Format: 12"
Label: Enfant Terrible (@)
Rated: *****
Compiled gathering tracks by bands who took part to the Hex nights (the nights that Enfant Terrible organize since 2004 at the OCCII in Amsterdam), HOERA! EEN HEX VOOR THUIS! (released under the new Enfant Terrbile sub-label Hex Grammofoonplaten) is a fantastic compilation with twelve tracks/bands that will please your needs of pure raw electro/experimental/wave/post punk music. Most of the names included here are unknown to me (I only knew and appreciated Sixteens, Wermut and Agent Side Grinder) but their tracks make me want for more because songs like the opening "Lovesick" (by Vanishing) or the fantastic "Blind" (by Frustation, a band which recalled me late 70's N.Y. sound of the No New York movement mixed with post punk), the punk attitude mixed with electronic bleeps of "Lydon on tv" (by Laurence Wasser), the raw pop electronic punk of "Ice double nice" (by Kania Tieffer) and the closing electronic experimental sound of "Ehrliche Juristen" (by Punk Soul Loving Bill, a band that sounds like a mix of Der Plan and early D.A.F.) are bringing fresh air renewing the spirit of the fathers of the genre. Don't miss it...

THOMAS NÍLA ET SON ORCHESTRE: !Vanity Is A Sin!

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 05 2007
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Artist: THOMAS NÍLA ET SON ORCHESTRE (@)
Title: !Vanity Is A Sin!
Format: CD
Label: Punch Records (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece Distribution
Rated: *****
Already known for their soundtracks of "The doctor" and "The wolves..." indie movies, Thomas Nola Et Son Orchestra with VANITY IS A SIN bring to the audience more of their dark cabaret extravaganza. If some tracks sound like an electronic and more bizarre version of early Nick Cave, some others sound like eerie folk songs. Sometimes too theatrical, the songs need their lyrics to be fully appreciated as the band's approach to music is based on dramatic transposition of life. Personally I appreciated most of the tracks (even if sometimes I needed a break) but I really liked the two experimental soundtracks contained into the Extra section of the CD (you can find seven mp3s and all the lyrics of the album): "The Edison elephant" and the following "John Singleton Copley" are able to create an incredible B-movie atmosphere which recalled me the best Hammer movies of the '70s. The live tracks "Henry Pelham", "The Crumbs are the Cure" and "Bei Mir Bist Du Schön - Reprise" are partially creating the weird semi psychedelic sound of the album but they sound more focused and less "alcoholic".

MARY AND THE BOY: Mary And The Boy

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Sep 27 2007
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Artist: MARY AND THE BOY
Title: Mary And The Boy
Format: CD
Label: Low Impedance Recordings (@)
Distributor: Msen Music
Rated: *****
Formed in 2004 as Mougra Band, Mary And The Boy during these years produced music for dance shows and theater. Coming from Greece the band is formed by two musicians and a dancer. Their first self titled album has a high dramatic and theatrical component and (not only because they're coming from Greece) the female vocals sometimes remember me of Diamanda Galas. The tracks are based on electronics and guitars but the main part is represented by the vocals (both female and male). In this way we have musical experimentations with a melodic structure which is functional to the theatrical aspect of the project. Lyrics deals with sex, death, humiliation and failure and they aren't descriptive of a particular situation, instead they are like flashes. "Black terror" for example opens with: "Oh black terror. Black whore of silence. That man nailed me down. He took his knife and ripped my heart". Musically the album opens with a duet with chants and piano just to explode with the second track, "Death", where a distorted guitar and a bass line create the right background for a crying woman. The band is good at the creation of these particular dramatic atmospheres and they deserve your attention.


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