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Artist: DIVERJE (@)
Title: The Distortion Chamber
Format: CD
Label: DSBP (@)
Rated: *****
This review of the already 6th release of DIVERJE I would like to start with a quotation taken from the title track "The Distortion Chamber":

"Step inside, the distortion chamber
electro-body-music takes you in
immerse in sound – synthetic pleasure
this is our secret, to keep us sane.
Step Inside, the distortion chamber
razor-sharp-beats, pounding you down
electrofied – you don’t want out
addicted to this energy now."

I couldn’t find any better words to describe finally the feeling not only by listening to this new output by Tommy T. Rapisardi, head behind DIVERJE, as well as in the rising DSBP label and the "Cyberage" radio show (www.cyberage.cx ). Tommy could again invite several talented musicians to help him up with programming, synths and composition, so you find here contributions by Xon of BOUNDLESS, Justin of LEXINCRYPT, Len Lemeire of IMPLANT, Vince Pujol of E.S.R. and a few others. The lyrics and vocals are still done by Tommy, while the music shows a huge amount of diversity simply caused through the different hard- and software the mentioned musicians use. So like it is mentioned in the booklet, this CD is recorded all over the world from the USA, to France, Belgium and New Zealand with the headquarter in the DSBP studios in Albuquerque, New Mexico. This album is mastered by the famous Da5id Din (INFORMÄTIK, din_fiv) at his Corossive Audio studio – you expect the best, so you get it. My personal favorites can be found mostly in the tracks in which Vince Pujol of E.S.R. has included his talented input. The Opener "Enough to Destroy" is one example of this and this track get some very good reactions through its appearance on the Alfa-Matrix quadruple compilation "Endzeit Bunkertracks Act 1".Another fine contribution between Vince and Tommy T. is the track "Your Pleasure" which is featured here in two different version. Well worked out futuristic synth layers meet extravagant vocals and impressive rhythm programmings, while things slowed down with a track "Time is the Enemy" where this two musicians teamed up with a third talented artist, Matt Ossen of TYPE001. The lyrics of Tommy are dealing mainly with happenings or problems around his life as a musician and label manager ("The Decline of the CD Generation"), but I assume also a huge personal influence out of his private life here, for example of a lost affair ("I Walk Alone", music arranged by Justin Cameron of LEXINCRYPT), same thematically with a slight hint in "Test Samples" (music arranged by Len Lemeire of IMPLANT). Not to hide I want also the fact that you also get some grinding guitar riffs here. Not unusual for DIVERJE of course – but the purist should be warned. In all we have a nice new and for the best DIVERJE album so far. One reason to get this CD is the fact of the long playing time of almost 75 minutes. And so you get a full-scale assault of diverse and varied arranged Electro/Industrial album which is not like anything else or easy to compare. A splendid release!



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Artist: VV.AA. (@)
Title: Interbreeding V: Terrorland
Format: CD
Label: BLC Productions, e-noxe (@)
Distributor: Alive!, Metropolis Records
Rated: *****
Part 5 of this stellar compilation series full of hard and dark Electro/Industrial acts features some slight changes in direction, art and also the music which could surprise. While the choice of combining already known acts with some hot and promising newcomers is still the same on the highest level of quality, Interbreeding V comes this time only as a single full length CD. This seems to be also a cost-wise decision by the label BLC Productions, on the other side it is also easier to follow all remarkable acts. This been said, "Interbreeding VI: Subhuman: The Alien Agenda" which is also a single CD was also released as a companion disc to this one. Also musically this comp series has experienced a slight change in direction. Here is still included a wide range of diverse music styles based on Dark Electro/Industrial/EBM, but I can hear a growing dedication to some dark and expressive instrumental pieces as well as some Powernoise efforts offered here by one of two ENCODER (new signing of BLC, out soon with an EP named "Supernatural") tracks, KALISHNIKOV (only one example for a new Industrial wave hailing from the east...) and the Alfa Matrix female artist UNTER NULL (excellent distortions in the mix...). Other outstanding tracks are offered here by FURY 162 (brilliant Dark Techno with Powernoise undertones, seems to be a side project by the Black Flames artist RETRACTOR...), RE_AGENT ("Never Satisfied (Krzon Remix)" of Canada’s finest solo project...) and of course IMPLANT ("My Gun" remixed by French artist SKOYZ). The new signings next to the already mentioned ENCODER of the BLC label are also present, PARA NORMAL and ALIEN PRODUKT give a dense appearance and will let you ask for more. ENCODER presenting us next to their Powernoise-like effort another rollicking instrumental piece which does nevertheless not uncover too much details of their upcoming music. As usual on this comp series the artwork has some big and eye-friendly surprises to offer. A special photo session with the international renowned model Jillian Ann (www.jillianann.com) done by Jeffery Scott (www.factory1019.com), which fits totally with the main theme all Interbreeding comps has to offer, the story board from and about Aliens. And be sure to check out also Jillian Ann’s music (!!!) project ELUCIDO here available with a very cool piece aptly called "Cold" as the final track. Once again and like any other part of this compilation series, "Terrorland" is an essential release. How could you watch innocent your face in a mirror if you do not try to purchase this???

Tracklist:

1. Fury 161 : decay of time
2. Fake : blood & skin (Imperative Reaction Remix)
3. Encoder : Soulcrusher
4. Kalishnikov : Pravda (Truth is a Dream Remix)
5. Re_agent : Never Satisfied (Krzon Remix)
6. Pecadores : Priest (Come to Daddy Mix)
7. H.I.V.+/Wired Brain : Havoc 2027 (Tamtrum Remix)
8. Unter Null : The End of Sleep
9. Implant : My Gun (Skoyz Remix)
10. Schattenschlag : One Shot
11. Encoder : Illuminati
12. Alien Produkt : Detestable Envy (Simulating Peace Remix)
13. Para Normal : Under the Light
14. Neikka RPM : Storm of Hell (Broken Seal Mix)
15. Severe Illusion : Girl with Knife in Hand (Depressive.Disorder Remix)
16. Elucido -- Cold


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Artist: LETHARGY (@)
Title: In-Macula Remixes
Format: CD EP
Label: Black Flames Records/e-noxe (@)
Distributor: Alive!
Rated: *****
We have here a long awaited follow-up CDEP of LETHARGY’s impressive debut "In-Macula", out somewhere at the fall of 2003. But to tell you the truth, and maybe you have heard or read about it in online forums: this EP will maybe never officially released because the band and their label Black Flames ended up all co-operations in some bad terms. The whole situation seems very unclear and difficult for outsiders, so I advise you to make your contact to the band, the management Hellcity or the German distributor E-Noxe who could help here. To the music: LETHARGY do present us here a long 10 track EP which features several remix works by more (both Alfa Matrix recording acts IMPLANT and NEIKKA RPM...) or less known names (ISENNGARD from Mexico, MORPH UNKOWN from the USA...). This release was designed to bring some more danceable attitudes to the usually more melancholic stuff of this band. Some of the presented remix works can easily used to keep the dancefloors of all dark halls burning ("The Golden Light" and "Emotion" remixed by LETHARGY themselves, "Future Time" remixed by IMPLANT...). Most outstanding piece is the remix work on "Nothing to Hide" done by the French Electronica act OIL 10. Clear and marvelous female vocal performances done by Mayte Cruz and a rich melodic musically content make an impressive effort both enjoyable at home as well as useable on the dancefloors. Strong diversity is present here through the musically very different directions of the chosen remix bands although the whole atmospheric content get lost. Impressive release of a talented band hailing from Spain. It is a pity that their situation is currently very difficult and I wish them the very best that they will soon find a way to be present with new stuff for the audience.


Beta: Reflections in Darkness

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Artist: Beta (@)
Title: Reflections in Darkness
Format: CD
Label: BLC Productions
Distributor: Metropolis (USA); e-noxe, Alive (Europe)
Rated: *****
This is Beta's debut, or so says BLC's rap sheet on this one-man Industrial crime wave. The website, however, of Ian J. Velasquez--Beta himself--shows a prior, out-of print release, Without/Within (and contains .mp3s of several of its tracks). But back to the task at hand. We are dealing with driving, relentless electro rhythm, laced throughout with hallucinated speech samples and nightmare-induced auditory imagery mixed in at just the right liminal level. None of the original-mix tracks on Reflections in Darkness is under five and a half minutes (save for opening track "Absolution," basically a song-length intro to the record itself); my current favorites are "Possessed," the de facto aggressive centerpiece, and the slower, slinkier "Escape." Four of the other tracks appear again in the back of the CD as guest remixes by different collaborators (Skoyze, Agonoize, Implant and Schattenschlag), but on first blush they don't seem to contribute as much to the overall Beta lustre, and therefore serve to max out the disc capacity. And therefore perfect for your next unbroken spell of doing whatever or driving wherever on your favorite type of rocket fuel, so get ready to settle in for the long haul. Speaking of which, although the label is based in Little Rock, Ark., a clue or two in the liner notes point to the Los Angeles area as Beta's likely habitat, so for God's sake don't piss him off in traffic. Cool body-part photo pastiche artwork, too, courtesy of a design entity named DeadDreamer.


Implant: You Can Watch / My Gun

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Artist: Implant (@)
Title: You Can Watch / My Gun
Format: CD
Label: Alfa Matrix (@)
Rated: *****
Implant....a famous Belgian act in the scene in Belgium, and outside . Originally started in 1992, their first release was born in 1996. Making progress with their own unique electro sound, they have positively grown strong through the years and this special DJ edition, limited on 150 copies, is yet the 11th Implant introduction (besides the appearance on various compilations) to the world and a warning for their new album which will appear mid March. Basicly this 69 minutes long remix EP exists of 4 basic songs from which 9 are remixed by other acts, and 2 remixed by Implant. Implant's sound these days is a mix between dark electro, techno and snippets of goa-trance with vo-coded vocals by Len (one of the founders) and Els (a new female introduction). Remixers on this little bomb are Architect (Daniel Myer), Electric Universe, Delobbo, Spies, Monolith, Neon Electronics, Vendas Novas, XP8 and Diskonnekted. Another surprise is the collaboration of Anne Clark (remember "Our Darkness" or "Metropolis" back in the '80's ?) who injects her poetical wisdom on the tracks "Tune Up Your Chips And Circuits" and "Surface Tension".
*WARNING* This DJ EP is a bomb. This is much more than the typical dark electro-techno sound. This is clubfloor stuff asking for pounding speakers, sharp ears and active dancing people. The presented remixers add their own flavour to it, some uplifting it to dark techno and goa-trance with some industrial edges. My superfavs on this limited edition are the remixes done by Spies , Neon Electronics (a member from The Neon Judgement), Architect and the 'Acid Frenzy Remix' done by themself.
No doubt, this is not a cheap end product. Carefully listening makes you discover little hidden soundsnippets between the hypnotizing rhythms, and marks again the quality of the artist, the involved remixers and the label.

/Tonny/



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