Music Reviews



CRYSTAL ENTITY: Close To Dawn

 Posted by Ferruccio Milanesi   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Sep 15 2004
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Artist: CRYSTAL ENTITY (@)
Title: Close To Dawn
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
Looking at the band’s photos I expected a Doom or Orchestral Doom Metal band, as THE 3RD AND THE MORTAL or the first THE GATHERING, and at the first listening I wasn’t positively impressed. But I never write reviews at first listen. Time passed, and already at the second listening I discovered a band with very good potentialities. CRYSTAL ENTITY (from Netherlands) offers a sort of Gothic Rock with rhythmical and fresh atmospheres, dark and heavy but not oppressive. Atmospheres can be described as New-Wave/Dark but sometimes guitars show a light Metal influence. Voice is melodic, listenable and it’s not the usual slow orchestral female voice: enjoyable melodies, good choruses, sometimes Maja’s voice makes me remember the great SIOUXIE, showing personality and resolution. I think voice is good, but in the future it could be used in a better way: English pronunciation is a bit harsh, a more fluent one would support better the music, but above all less hesitation in releasing her energy, I’m sure she has much to give.
"Their River" is a great song, showing their THE MISSION (UK) or, I would add, ROSETTA STONE influences, but they’re not copying something already done and the band could be recognized for various personal elements. "Leaves", "A New Dawn", "Close To Me", and I could continue mentioning all the tracks for everyone is a good song: many of them (as "A Quick Bite" and "Take Me With You") could become a hit single, with a better production and with a more pressing and energetic voice.
This is the first official work, and already reflects a mature band. I’m sure in a next future we’ll heard much about CRYSTAL ENTITY.
Sep 11 2004
Artist: Piney Gir
Title: Piakahokahoo
Format: CD
Label: Grey Day Productions
Piney Gir's music on "Piakahokahoo" is a bit startling, to say the least. Mostly synth driven and quirkily perky, Piney Gir's songs blend moody, grrl-goth sensibilities and minimalist electro sensibilities ... along with whatever other influences happen along ... to create some awfully unique and surprisingly catchy melancholic meditations. On top of Piney Gir's ability to blend naive perk with subtley bitter observations is her ability to surprise with, for example, a remake - Piney Gir style - of "My Generation" and, get this, a country song - again, Piney Gir flavor all the way - called "Greetings, Salutations, Goodbye". To attempt any further to try and properly describe the original songcraft of Piney Gir's surprising talent would be futile. So take my word for it. No, don't do that. Go see for yourself. And bring an open mind.

Veil of Thorns: Cafe Flesh

 Posted by Kristofer Upjohn   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Aug 28 2004
Artist: Veil of Thorns (@)
Title: Cafe Flesh
Format: CD
Label: Foamin' Bone Productions
If you put together old school goth rock, David Bowie, Pink Floyd and gothic-electro-industrial and came out with something all its own, you'd have Veil of Thorns. Foamin' Bone Productions' rerelease of the classic indie goth album "Cafe Flesh" is a chance for today's underground listeners to check out some original music. P. Emerson Williams was one of the members of this mood-thick burst of new wave sensitive dark gothic existential angst and he is also to be found behind the goth-industrial flavors of Beyond Flesh and the extremely unique industrial black metal act Choronzon. Well, his (and his fellow artists') creativity is evident here. The staples of Williams' work - eclectic artistry and soulful nihilism - run strongly through Veil of Thorns' gothic musicality. Electronic flavored beats, heavy synthing mixed with edgy guitar weepings and highly new wave influenced vox come together on a goth act that should not be ignored by those who grew up listening to The Cure, Bauhaus and others. Only Veil of Thorns' sound is all its own, mind you.

Beyond Flesh: Birthed

 Posted by Kristofer Upjohn   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Aug 28 2004
Artist: Beyond Flesh (@)
Title: Birthed
Format: CD
Label: Foamin' Bone Productions
Within the tracks on "Birthed", a CD by Beyond Flesh, you can hear parallels to industrial bands such as Pig, Razed in Black and Nine Inch Nails and, more often than not, you can hear the pure creativity of P. Emerson Williams. Anything created by this man, the brain behind Choronzon (black metal tinged with experimental, ambient and industrial edges) and Veil of Thorns (electro infused gothic rock), you would expect to be eclectic and creative. It's his trademark. Herein you'll encounter thick, pummeling, distorted spears of electro/guitar industrial, D&B, goth, dirgey slow industrial moodiness, etc., etc., etc., etc., in fact, etcetera ad infinitum. What's persistent in Williams' smooth, creative and original fusion of various elements is the sustained tone and mood, like that of a soul resigned to nihilistic fate. None of Emerson's creations are quite like anything else, even when you're hearing touches of something else in there. His fierce originality score another point for the underground.

DER FEUERKREINER: La 'Nvidia

 Posted by Eugenio Maggi (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Aug 26 2004
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Artist: DER FEUERKREINER (@)
Title: La 'Nvidia
Format: 12"
Label: Neuropa (@)
Rated: *****
Good news from Der Feuerkreiner, an Italian duo who had released a surprisingly good debut cd on Runes&Men/Misty Circles some time ago (see archive). This 4-track, 23-minute 12" ep is released by Neuropa, specialized in limited vinyls from the industrial/martial/power electronics area. They have dropped the few hard-EBM influences they had, and maybe added some more openly melodic and wave-ish ones. DF still draw most of their influences from The Moon Lay Hidden Beneath a Cloud/Der Blutarsch, but adding a good dose of personality and, luckily, not indulging in the abused militaria/WWII/European decline iconography. They're also quite successful in using only electronic/programmed sounds, which could be a handicap in this style, without adding any additional sample. Valentina's voice is still one of their strongest points, and the decadent, melancholic melodies she creates also reminded me of Kirlian Camera's "Schmerz". The title track, though, is the exhilarating cover of a popular anti-evil eye song, with upbeat percussions and frantic vocals sung in the local dialect of Piceno. One of the few interesting projects in the martial industrial field.


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