Music Reviews

Oct 28 2010
Artist: Strip In Midi Side (@)
Title: Your Stripping Experience
Format: CD
Label: New Model Label (@)
Rated: *****
Eight months after my review of their debut MCD, here are again the Strip In Midi Side with their first album. They got signed to New Model Label and they just released YOUR STRIPPING EXPERIENCE. On this album you'll find the five songs of the MCD (with the same running order) plus five new tracks. Well recorded and mastered (they chose Streaky Mastering, people who worked with Nitzer Ebb and Depeche Mode) the album shows well the multifaceted soul of the band: goth, industrial, new wave and pop are all elements that the four Strip In Midi Side are confortable with. On different tracks (for example "Art is insanity" or "I want") the band pass from rock industrial obsessive riffs/distortions, to British pop melodies creating an effective contrast where energy and irony coexist. "Bring me down", song that we already know, starts like a Apoptygma Berzerk tune just to turn into a melodic Peter Murphy one and follows playing with these influences adding a personal touch here and there. "You don't know" mix Nin Inch Nails to the best melodic moments of Foo Fighters (some melodies recall me "The pretender"). Like a giant sponge they four Italian guys absorbed the best sounds of those genres just to digest and spit them in your face. Upbeat, irreverent, energetic, YOUR STRIPPING EXPERIENCE is only waiting four your judgement...

Purple Fog Side: Project:Rentgen

 Posted by Marc Tater (@)   Electronics / EBM / Electronica
Synth Pop / Electro Pop / Synth-Electronica
Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 21 2010
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Artist: Purple Fog Side
Title: Project:Rentgen
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Synthematik (@)
Rated: *****
If one of the oldest and best known Russian Goth-/Dark Wave-bands like PURPLE SIDE FOG (2 albums available on Shadowplay Records) decides to collaborate with Synthematik ' in no negative meaning a pure net-label ' then there must be growing a kind of sensible sensation in the minds of the responsible band-members. The certainty, that the days of the physical product, the CD, are counted, may can be taken as a reference, that this formation has documented the will to collaborate. On the other hand, Synthematik has made themselves a good name during the last half year, to be an excellent promoter by using multiple kinds of online resources to gain a maximum of attention, so why not to give it a try? This freely downloadable album consist of an experiment of PFS ' they have recorded all featured tracks in kind of a real-time mode, which means, that they have produced song by song in a strictly declared time window of 1 ½ months, starting all compositions completely from scratch. The band has used online communities and has uploaded any raw demo version of these tracks for their fans and listeners to start a mutual interaction. Completely remixed and mastered after this experimental phase, this 10 all new tracks (plus 3 remix contributions by ALPHA POINT, X-TI, and ELEKTRONNOE OBLAKO, plus an alternative radio version in Russian language on 'My Secret friend') are far away from being demos or uninspired stuff established out of a short expiration time. I am unable to draw comparisons to their Shadowplay recordings, as I am unfamiliar with them, but especially tracks like the already mentioned 'My Secret Friend', or 'Crystal Castle' offer enough potential to impress Goth-, Wave, and Electro-minded listeners completely. Especially the intended contrast between the raw- and dark-sounding male vocalist to the compelling, nearly angelic vocals of the female counterpart can be called exceptionally well-done. This album may needs 2 ' 3 spins more to disclose all good elements, but it is definitely worth to invest it. So there's only one thing I would like to know from the band: what is a 'PVC Slut'?

Frank (Just Frank) / Soviet Soviet: Split

 Posted by Andrea Vercesi (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 20 2010
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Artist: Frank (Just Frank) / Soviet Soviet
Title: Split
Format: 12"
Label: Mannequin (@)
Distributor: Mannequin Mailorder
Rated: *****
Another awesome release on Rome's Mannequin Records, this time it is a split EP that puts together French cold-wave (or brutal-wave) heroes Frank (Just Frank) and Soviet Soviet, Italy's most alienated postpunkers. FJF in a few months became a pillar of the new new-wave scene and personally i think that they are in a state of grace. The 5 tracks presented here are very close to perfection with a painstaking attention to details. Their 15 minutes side departs from the bleak and tipically cold-wave sounds of their debut album ('The Brutal Wave' on Wierd Records) towards a seamless fusion of analogue machines with an intricate guitar work. The vocal parts improved and reveal more of the emotional side of Chris and Kirti's lyrics. There are two astounding instrumentals, placed as intro and outro of their side - 'Saint' is my favourite and made me think about those simple and devastating Sisters Of Mercy's first instrumental sketches. 'Valerie' is a highlight here and the finest moments of Little Nemo come to mind. 'Do The Soviet' is dancey and steers away from the melancholic mood that usually pervades their compositions. The track is dedicated to Soviet Soviet's gig in Nice, at the beginning of this year and celebrates the friendship between the two bands. With Soviet Soviet is an entirely different affair as they deliver a personal take on the pitch-black side of post-punk and draw inspiration directly from the first Wire and Kiling Joke. In their side of the split, they take you by the hand in a modern tale of urban psychosis. Their sound can be described as howling guitars over a skull crushing-rhythm section, actually one of the best i've heard in years.'Lokomotiv' is the track that made me fall for them, an unstoppable aggression that gets everyone moshing, when played live . 'S.Y.' is a one-way trip to Death Valley 69, if you get what i mean. 'Cobretto' will suddenly make you dance and tighten your jaw. Be sure not to miss their live shows, some of the best in Europe. Limited edition of 500 copies ' Silkscreen ultra limited edition of 50.

BACHI DA PIETRA : insect tracks

 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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Oct 13 2010
Title: insect tracks
Format: CD + DVD
Label: Wallace (@)
Rated: *****
I'm sure many of you non Italian readers don't know that much about Bachi da Pietra for the simple fact except for the music they sing, think, breath in Italian or at the least the way Italian should be, but I'll explain it later, said that they've been featured with a track in the soundtrack of the tv series "Son Of Anarchy" with Henry Rollins therefore power to them!. This project involved mainly the band, a sound engineer Francesco Donadello and a video maker Luigi Conte. For what concern the live vinyl and the audio exhibit of the project it's recorded in analog in a theater and sounds damn good, if you don't know the band, despite the live sound profile the characteristic skeletal-acoustic blues, post-eighties noise rock, theatrical reading mixture comes out vividly. If you need names to get a picture of if you put together Rowland S. Howard, Nick Cave, Massimo Volume, Thalia Zadek's Come and why not a little bit of Jeffrey Lee Pierce, some depression and the game is done. As I've said the live vinyl is great but I still think the most interesting part of the project is the live video since it freezes in time the whole atmosphere and the basic idea of the concept. The confidential feel of the live performance, the "back to analog" profile of the recording and the "making of" that lays behind this double format release come out more clearly than a thousand review could illustrate. The fourth album of the band is about to be released and we're talking about one of the most well known duos of the italian undergound scene featuring former ex singer of Madrigali Magri and Bruno Dorella who's the man behind Bar La Muerte and current member of Ovo and Ronin.

White Rose Transmission: Spiders in the Mind Web

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Dark / Gothic / Wave / New Wave / Dark Wave / Industrial Gothic
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Oct 08 2010
Artist: White Rose Transmission (@)
Title: Spiders in the Mind Web
Format: CD
Label: Echozone (@)
Distributor: Masterpiece
Rated: *****
The ghostly darkness evoked by the fourth release of the White Rose Transmission, a project where the glittering creative wit and whimsical poetry by Carlo Von Putten (member of Dead Guitars) and Adrian Borland, the late lamented soul of The Sound whose warm shadow's still casted onto this band's music, on the occasion supported by the musical skills by ex-Clan of Xymox lyricist Frank Weyzig and Rob Keijzer, is able to haunt listener's ear just like a web crafted by an expert spider. Sad acoustic rock ballads whose firing melodic lines are augmented and fed by melancholic feelings and lofty sentiments, emerging from lyrics, which even if don't really reach the peaks and the spiritual highlands discovered by Adrian, sound fully inspired and sometimes look like Adrian's thoughts and dialogues between his soul and the spider biting his mind since the introductory Love or just Loveless ('¦words like 'This everlasting fire/Came down with you my friend/I saw the lights of heaven/Before I saw the end ' sound like a grateful farewell to all the musicians, artists and common people who had get in touch with Adrian's soul'¦) and Wildest Horse ' maybe the best song of this album together with the moving Glittering Green. That's the reason why even the circumstance that the velvety Carlo's voice seems wallowing in pain and depression and the fact that sometimes lyrics insist considerably on some clichés of the genre makes sense and looks like a sort of reunion with Adrian's soul. Intense guitar lines are enriched by piano touches and backing vocals, both of them being elements highlighting the pathos of the whole album and I can easily imagine Adrian's nodding at these guys when he magically reappears in Foreign Land, an edited and re-arranged version of Love Is Such A Foreign Land, a track issued on Adrian's last somewhat prophetical album The Last Days Of The Rain Machine. It's like he lives again'¦

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