“Surveillance” may contain many of the same basic ingredients as earlier material – meaty slabs of no-nonsense percussion, sampled vocal elements and grating textures laid over accessible melody lines – but the recipe being used here is far different… “Surveillance” is, musically speaking, the most exciting and accomplished thing 100blumen has ever put together.
Twenty Knives – The Royal We
“The Royal We” can’t be analysed in terms of song structure or melody or harmony. It can’t be identified as sharing common percussive characteristics with other branches of electronic music. It’s not even worth describing their sound as ‘experimental’, because an experiment generally has an identifiable, valid outcome, and leftfield craziness that distorts perceptions isn’t what I would call a valid outcome. But if you can survive that, you’re in for a treat.
Andrew Oudot – Crystallization
The fragile, pure tones generated on this record convey crystal clarity with every passing measure. Mathematical precision in the programming meets an almost organic growth algorithm in the sequencing creating something that is beautiful, brittle and cuts directly to the bone – not unlike clusters of crystalline formations.
Be My Delay – To the Other Side
From the eclectic (not to mention unexpected) instrument choices, including Tibetan bells run through a wah-wah, up to and including the incorporation of voice as more than merely a vehicle for lyrics – it all makes for a pretty impressive concept. Alas, concept isn’t everything.
Typhoid – Simulazione Di Divinità
Perhaps it’s just that typical Italian passion shining through that makes Typhoid such a pleasure to listen to, perhaps it’s subliminal programming via music. I’m even willing to accept that it could be clever composition, careful production and intelligent application of rhythm. The fact remains that “Simulazione Di Divinità” is an absolutely lovely album and one I’ll revisit regularly.
Kifoth – Violence Corporation
Kifoth deliver, on “Violence Corporation”, pretty standard fare in the realm of electro-industrial. This is not to say that it’s more of the same formulaic harsh dance music – on the contrary, Kifoth manage, despite the sonically limited nature of their chosen medium/genre, to offer up, in varying degrees, doses of aggression, socio-political commentary and, believe it or not, fun.
Fiction City – Nova
If the pedestrian approach is overlooked, it soon becomes obvious that actual talent has been engaged and awoken in the assembly of the music. Sequencing, construction and arrangement are all crystal clear and tight, as is the mastering and levelling of the completed tracks. The instrumentation is also, for the most part, well defined.
Unit:187 – Out For Blood
“Out For Blood” is more than just a nostalgic industrial record. It’s a powerful album, brimming with emotional performances and something that stands out in comparison with what most so-called industrial acts are putting together in their parents’ basements nowadays.
Geistform – Transistor Music
It’s not often that I come across a CD that I have difficulty listening to in one sitting, but Geistform accomplish this on “Transistor Music”, their fourth studio album. Imagine this: high-energy, synth-driven, uptempo stuff, but with an underlying menace that is quite likely to scare off the usual fans of similar offerings.
V/A – Hypercommunity
Aliens serve up something excellent in the form of “Hypercommunity” – and the record forms both an excellent introduction to a very exciting label as well as a welcome sampler of new material for existing fans.