CD, self-released, 2004
When was the last time that you had listened to a record a few times in a row, only to then spend more time wondering why it hadn’t hit mainstream already? Well, prepare for such a thing to happen again as soon as you listen to this offering from multi-instrumentalist Bruno Angelis and his impressive sortie of collaborators, a.k.a. Mana Erg.
Complex techno and drum’n’bass structures set a speedy pace, complemented by the strong presence of strings and synths throughout the entirety of the album in a brilliant display of good songwriting, perhaps mostly comparable to the more rhythmical musings of Nine Inch Nails. But what sets it a league apart from most similar acts (heck, sometimes even beyond NIN, and that coming from a staunch Trent Reznor supporter) is the work done with and by the vocals; Bruno Angelis has a great, clean voice, fitting perfectly with the mood conveyed by the album, while Deborah Roberts performs absolutely brilliantly, her parts almost adding an angelic feel, brightening up the darkness of the album’s lyrics and music.
Dark and compelling, cynical and aggressive in its messages, but deceivingly sweet and calm with their display, “The Blind Watchmaker” is an album of constant contradicting elements struggling against each other and resulting to an absolutely brilliant set of music that could easier define a new genre than belong to one. With its truly remarkable artistic quality, it brings Mana Erg way above many of the most “touted” electronic acts, leaving space for the usual questions as to where music would be nowadays if better acts got some well-deserved promotion and received more interest from major labels.
— George Mouratidis