Music Reviews



CABOTO : Hidden or just gone

 Posted by Andrea Ferraris (@)   Experimental / Avantgarde / Weird & Wired / Glitch / Noise / Field Recording
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Jun 07 2006
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Artist: CABOTO (@)
Title: Hidden or just gone
Format: CD
Label: Fratto9 (@)
Rated: *****
Caboto from Bologna have arrived at their third "circumnavigation" and I'd say their emotional, post-fusion, jazzy impetus pushes the forward while sticking to their roots. There's something "old" (like every good wine) in the music of this band, some "electric-Miles Davis" flavour diluted in this "indie" potion. Differently from their previous album "Did you get visuals", the band added some vocals and some more "colours" but I'm sure those who loved their records so far won't be let down. The Hancockesque electric piano sometimes has that we can define a minimalist taste (even it's really far from serialism and from being "simple"), anyhow, it sails in a sea of troubled but yet calm guitar sea and on a groovy-jazzy rhythmic section. The vocals have made their debut on a few songs and it's a strange effects sometimes but in general I'd say the result is good. While with "Did you get..." I've had the impression the album was meant as a whole, in "Hidden or just gone" the focus is on the parts. While their improvisational flow combined with their great musicianship is still strong, they've timidly begun writing songs. According to my opinion some episodes have an incredible "phatos" (Canedineve, Disarchitetture/Glass elephant goes downtown) or even better that visionary/emotive touch that's one of their main qualities. Sad, psychedelic, jazzy, afro-american music for sinking ships and confused whales (if the layout has a significance).

BLUME: In Tedesco Vuol Dire Fiore

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Jun 06 2006
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Artist: BLUME (@)
Title: In Tedesco Vuol Dire Fiore
Format: CD
Label: Pippola Music (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Blume is a new Italian band and their music is a blend of pop with electronic arrangements. Their first CD IN TEDESCO VUOL DIRE FIORE is a well produced album (it was something I was expecting for, because Paolo Favati produced it) of minimal ambient pop which contains some really catchy songs as well as other tracks that need more time to be dug. Tracks like "Fuori piove", "Non va bene" and "Ninna nanna alla regina" are good examples of indie rock with electronic arrangements and they can satisfy the taste of a wide range of listeners while the other tracks have a complex electronic arrangement that could amaze the purists but that can find some trouble into finding a place into commercial radio playlists. The minimal structure of the tracks sometimes give too much importance to Francesca’s vocals and due to her particular way of singing (she seems halfway from being awake and sleepy and sometimes it seems she sings while she’s yawning) I was losing the interest into listening some of their songs. For sure the album will find its fans but this isn’t exactly my cup of tea. Instead, I found interesting the nine mp3s of the CD extra section. These tracks ("Nuove Gioie", "CADEAU 2", "Seppia", "Waiting Snow", "Souffle", "Piedi", "Sweet07", "Sigaro Rosso" and "S.Croce in Settembre") are instrumental experimental indie rock cuts that are really functional as soundtracks. Here you can’t find pop influences but tons of melancholy mixed with other sour emotions.
P.s. Check the nice "Piove piano" video here:

Windows Media Video (wmv):
Low: 256kbts / 320x240http://compactURL.com/fdzs
High:1024kbts / 521x384http://compactURL.com/sctr

Quicktime (mov):
Mid:512kbts / 384x288http://compactURL.com/jrjj

Real Media Player (.rm)
Mid: 512kbts / 384x288http://compactURL.com/gver

THELEMA: Burnt Memories

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Jun 01 2006
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Artist: THELEMA (@)
Title: Burnt Memories
Format: CD
Label: Small Voices (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****
Thelema were and are a reality of the independent Italian music. I won’t talk about their past right now, because I’m preparing the follow up to my interview I did with Massimo back in 1985 so we’ll have the opportunity to talk about the various band’s incarnations and more. This record has been recorded by two members of the original 80s band line up, Massimo Mantovani and Giorgio Parmigiani. Their previous album has been released in 1997 and was produced by Pankow’s Paolo Favati. If the previous one had post punk tracks treated with industrial arrangements by Paolo, the new album BURNT MEMORIES finds the band renewing their style. BURNT MEMORIES didn’t born properly as a Thelema album because Giorgio prepared all the tracks and then asked to Massimo if he wanted to sing them. If you are used to the old post punk sound of the band, well, prepare yourself to something radically different. The twelve tracks of the CD (the double album contains four bonus tracks: a cover of Death In June’s "Heaven street", "Lost in my wonder", "Ballad of untold memories - radio edit mix" and "Ritual - Many moons ago mix by Muthant") are electro ballads with acoustic guitars (check also their cool version of Stranglers’ "European Female" where Thelema catch the original feelings reworking the song with their style). Even if sometimes the rhythm and the structure of the song are similar the beautiful melodies and the deep seducing vocals of Massimo (helped by Francesca Giuli on "Juice of life", who she co-written) help giving life to a good and convincing album. The tracks are written like for a concept album where the writing that you find inside the booklet (it talks about the life of an adept and about his different steps through the path of Magick until his death where he loose everything about his ego in the ocean of Aima) is the key that you have to read to understand the sensations and situations described into the lyrics. Thelema is setting up a band to tour, don’t miss them and visit their website to check some unreleased tracks.

FIRST NATION: First Nation

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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May 29 2006
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Artist: FIRST NATION (@)
Title: First Nation
Format: CD
Label: Paw Tracks (@)
Rated: *****

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Have you ever wondered to know how a cabaret version of Slits could sound? Well, now your chance to satisfy your curiosity has come. First Nation is a group of girls that were used to support The Animal Collective and now they have their chance to prove their talent and just by listening to the first three songs I can say that their distinctive tribal minimal style is really functional. Listen to "Monkey" for example and you’ll realize that the apparent shabby style could be an updated version of Virgin Prunes, where punk, folk and controlled chaos create a sort of friendly freak. "Swells" could sound as a new version of "Sweet Home Under White Clouds" only with the instruments out of control. I really appreciated their attitude and even if their sound is less devastating respect the Irish band I loved so much, First Nation in my opinion aren’t a hippy band of the new millennium. Maybe their way of dealing with music could make the audience think so but if creativity passes from here, then there could be only a word left to say... PEACE!

THE STRIKE BOYS: Being In A Boy Group

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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May 22 2006
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Artist: THE STRIKE BOYS
Title: Being In A Boy Group
Format: CD
Label: Stereo Deluxe (@)
Distributor: Audioglobe
Rated: *****

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BEING IN A BOY GROUP is the new fourth album from The Strike Boys. On this one Tommy Yamaha and Martin Kaisa did their best to offer to the audience the top notch danceable tunes taking influences from house, funk, dub, pop, indie rock and electro. I know that it could seems strange to name so many genres but I assure you that the ten tracks of BEING IN A BOY GROUP aren’t a nonsense mishmash. Probably you already listened the "Barfing barfly"’s funky rock into a Puma ad on MTV. If you want to know how to mix dub, funky and rock check "Paralyzed Part I" and "Paralyzed Part II" while the following "Chemical princess" (with Iamx vocals) is a catchy dark electro pop gem. "Heart on fire" with Thomas Lang (singer of the German indie rock band The Robocop Kraus) on guest vocals is an funky indie energetic one. "The body" switch the atmosphere on instrumental electronic reggae just to end into "Loss of the badman", another track influenced by reggae and indie rock (it reminded me the Gorillaz) and on vocals we find Earl Zinger (known also as Rob Galliano). "Push push" leave the reggae influences to embrace electro funky while the closing "Being in a boygroup" is a mid tempo indie rock dub track full of reverb. On BEING IN A BOY GROUP you’ll find so many highlights that you’ll forget about questioning yourself what genre is this.


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