Music Reviews



STARFUCKERS: Ordine '91-'96

 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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Nov 22 2010
cover
Artist: STARFUCKERS
Title: Ordine '91-'96
Format: CD
Label: Sometimes Records (@)
Active from the end of the 80s until the first years of 00s (but recently reformed and touring again), Starfuckers were an Italian band that started playing following the Stooges / MC5 revival that in Italy had different followers with bands that started as garage bands just to increase their distortion level (Monks, Sick Rose and Mouse Blasters were some of them). Their first album "Metallic Diseases", followed that style but soon after they changed everything by starting to experiment with guitar noise and lyrics. Writing their lyrics now in Italian language and singing them into a declamatory style, Starfuckers with their new MLP "Brodo di cagne strategico" could had been filed under the "conceptual noise" folder. The new detached vocals along with layers of guitar feedbacks often coupled to sax solos made of them a sort of Bukowski transposed to music. The following album "Sinistri" (available on this CD along with "Brodo di cagne strategico", two compilation tracks and another unreleased one) was even more conceptual and if on the previous MLP, guitar still had some Stooges influences, on this album improvisation and noise play a big part. Jazzy guitars and drums along with noise and theatrical vocal lines are the core of these recordings and only "Ordine pubblico" sounds like a sort of post rock track. ORDINE '91-'96 gathers this material and if you missed it, this is a good way to discover it.

Moon.74: Newborn

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 22 2010
cover
Artist: Moon.74 (@)
Title: Newborn
Format: CD
Label: Echozone (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece
Rated: *****

When I firstly saw the cover artwork of Moon.74's Newborn, I supposed Echozone issued his first hip hop release of his catalogue or some kind of mixture of jumping beats with Celtic folk as suggested by the Celtic motifs of the cross printed on it, but as I pressed on play it was clear the different tenor of this album, the first one by this Depeche Mode music buff, whose style is prominently influenced by the first acts of the notorious band, in particular by the one which could be easily categorized as synth-pop. Even Dominic Hein's (the real name of this one-man-band) threatening look and his bad countenance with a gestural character on the shots typical of someone begging or praying for attention can be deceptive: you could expect a rough rumbling voice, but Hein's one sounds almost emasculated with his gentle and massaging notes, maybe a little bit monotonous, but what could seems an attempt of emulating his singing idol gets ahead especially in the nuances of songs such as Strange Convention, Gun (without barrel!), Dirty Mind or Moonlanding and even from the lyrical viewpoint the level is above mediocrity, even if nothing but a post-romantic reprise of the favorite themes by Gore & C. close to the literal substance of a teeny love letter or an interminable SMS message with self-indulgent winks (We Are - the best song of the album in my opinion -, Into My Arms, Oblivion, Stalking Horse). The most evident limits of this issue could be justified by the fact Dominic has done everything by himself as synth parts sound not so elaborated and layered and melodic structures are too terse. Moreoever he should try to broaden his vocal range, but it could be not so correct pretending too much: it's a newborn by the way!

Abney Park: Æther Shanties

 Posted by Andre Wiegand   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Nov 20 2010
cover
Artist: Abney Park (@)
Title: Æther Shanties
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
This highly interesting Seattle, US based act was founded in 1997 and performed Goth with Industrial touch. Yet what came upon the band later could not be foreseen even by its founding members. The band's plane collided in a freak storm with a time travelling zeppelin (or was it a dirigible?..) the Ophelia in 2006. The Ophelia was allegedly built by Dr. Leguminous Calgori probably called after a character from the silent film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. The band took the possession of the Ophelia and decided they would be better to become airship pirates. A wise decision indeed!
So much for the official story. Since then Abney Park has released three Steampunk albums and Ãther Shanties is the second f them. The majority of the songs on the album are rooted in the fictional story of Steampunk piracy. Building Steam is probably the most brilliant number on the album. I personally cannot stop listening to it. It has a nice melody and takes your imagination to the Steampunk world without computers and space shuttles. Until the Day I Die is full of musical elements from the 30s. My Life is about losing and re-finding yourself .
Throw them Overboard kicks off with the theme from a traditional Jewish song and has got nonce word formations like alcohology in its lyrics. The Derelict works with the classic piece of pirate musicianship Fifteen Men on the Deadman's Chest and interprets it in an Abney Park fashion followed by a heart break song Victoria that could cut into your muscle of love deeper than some HIM-ballads. The title song perfectly conveys the whole vibe of the uncertain but adventurous existence of an airship pirate with all its troubles and escapades.
All of the band's albums are available as downloads on the AB's official web-site along with a whole bunch of cool merchandising. Heard to believe these guys run the band by themselves with no label to promote them.
Ãther Shanties is a rather multi-facetted album that anybody with a descent taste in music and a little imagination and a yearning for an adventure in his heart would totally enjoy. A true masterpiece of Steampunk.

Abney Park: Æther Shanties

 Posted by Andre Wiegand   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
 Edit (6120)
Nov 20 2010
cover
Artist: Abney Park (@)
Title: Æther Shanties
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
This highly interesting Seattle, US based act was founded in 1997 and performed Goth with Industrial touch. Yet what came upon the band later could not be foreseen even by its founding members. The band's plane collided in a freak storm with a time travelling zeppelin (or was it a dirigible?..) the Ophelia in 2006. The Ophelia was allegedly built by Dr. Leguminous Calgori probably called after a character from the silent film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. The band took the possession of the Ophelia and decided they would be better to become airship pirates. A wise decision indeed!
So much for the official story. Since then Abney Park has released three Steampunk albums and Ãther Shanties is the second f them. The majority of the songs on the album are rooted in the fictional story of Steampunk piracy. Building Steam is probably the most brilliant number on the album. I personally cannot stop listening to it. It has a nice melody and takes your imagination to the Steampunk world without computers and space shuttles. Until the Day I Die is full of musical elements from the 30s. My Life is about losing and re-finding yourself .
Throw them Overboard kicks off with the theme from a traditional Jewish song and has got nonce word formations like alcohology in its lyrics. The Derelict works with the classic piece of pirate musicianship Fifteen Men on the Deadman's Chest and interprets it in an Abney Park fashion followed by a heart break song Victoria that could cut into your muscle of love deeper than some HIM-ballads. The title song perfectly conveys the whole vibe of the uncertain but adventurous existence of an airship pirate with all its troubles and escapades.
All of the band's albums are available as downloads on the AB's official web-site along with a whole bunch of cool merchandising. Heard to believe these guys run the band by themselves with no label to promote them.
Ãther Shanties is a rather multi-facetted album that anybody with a descent taste in music and a little imagination and a yearning for an adventure in his heart would totally enjoy. A true masterpiece of Steampunk.

EGIDA AUREA: La Mia Piccola Guerra

 Posted by Maurizio Pustianaz (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
 Edit (6105)
Nov 13 2010
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Artist: EGIDA AUREA
Title: La Mia Piccola Guerra
Format: CD
Label: HR!SPQR (@)
Rated: *****
Thanks to Araxe Promotions I had the chance to see Egida Aurea live in Torino the last Saturday and I talked again to Diego Banchero about their first album released by HR!SPQR recently. LA MIA PICCOLA GUERRA ("My little war") tries to describe the feelings of the people who fought for their ideals, no matter if they where BR terrorists, Russian soldiers, men in exile, etc. We all know that in Italy with the birth of commercial television broadcasters in the early 80s something changed. During the end of the 60s and for all the 70s, movements of students and workers tried to change society, fighting for freedom of thought and action, against all the kind of slavery. Well, commercial television in conjunction with deviated branches of the state (secret services, free masonry) and the Vatican succeeded into stopping all that. With the spread of cocaine and repression all the movements lived hard days and we saw the birth of people interested only in money and look (like the yuppies or "paninari") thanks to brainwashing television shows. LA MIA PICCOLA GUERRA wants to support all the men who trust an ideal and are still trying to differ. Musically we have eight tracks inspired by folk and Italian singer-songwriters (they come from the same city of Fabrizio De Andre') where the accordion along with acoustic guitar, bass guitar and the passionate vocals of Carolina Cecchinato create now energetic and now dreamy atmospheres that you won't be able to ignore. Unfortunately the band use Italian language but I'm sure that the foreign audience will be able to catch the point because Egida Aurea put their heart into these recordings.


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