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Antikatechon - "I Feel Nothing But Repulsion" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  The readers interested in the deepening of the biographical-discographical aspects of the Italian solo-act Antikatechon - aka Davide Del Col - they will find every exhaustive detail in the Vox Empirea's reviews section for the year 2013, precisely in the page dedicated to the albums "Chrisma Crucifixorum" and "Out Hunting For Teeth" - this last one realized together with the solo-project Nimh - followed in turn in the same year by the six episodes included in the full-length "Woe Is The Reward", distributed by the glorious Polish label Rage In Eden and by the inclusion over time of various tracks in different dark-ambient playlists, until the publication of this new album entitled "I Feel Nothing But Repulsion" licensed in 2016 always by the home records Rage In Eden. Otherworldly dark-ambient / doom-ambient / noise / post-industrial, deeply evocative and brimful of strong symbolism, that one played by Antikatechon is mostly a perpetual evolution towards destabilizing concepts and extremely realistic sonic allegories, as if they were abstract transpositions of images and moods while they precipitate with slowness into the most obscure walls of mind. An important guest into the album is Giuseppe Verticchio - the Roman artist and composer specialized in genres ambient / dark-ambient / industrial / electronic / shoegaze / experimental / ritual-ethnic music, better known by his projects Nimh, Hall Of Mirrors, Twist Of Fate and Maribor - who's the record engineer and the guest-musician of one of the five long suites present in the tracklist. The first of these is "The Epitome Of Ingratitude," an intensely suggestive dark-ambient executed through immaterial, alienating sounds, able to drag the imagination into a mesmerizing rise of siderurgic noises, motionless, subterranean pads, dilated acoustics, torrential hyper-frequencies and dissonant melodies, elements planned for the reaching of a perceptive state similar to hypnosis, in which the 'time-space' criterion is totally annihilated. The stifling, depressed segments of piano played by the guest-musician Day Before Us - aka the neoclassic / cinematic / dark ambient French solo-project represented by Philippe Blache - they spread among the abysmal glumness of the following "And All My Dreams, Torn Asunder", in my opinion quotabile as one of the best Antikatechon's compositions, created by impetuous currents of laptop on which density they gradually elevate waves of interferences, industrial turbulences and, further on, piano counterpoints alternate in rapid succession, to form an essential, monolithic loop full of elegance and classicism, all softened by feminine spoken-words in French audible in the background. The namesake "I Feel Nothing But Repulsion" is a dark-ambient module in which the oppressive coverage of keyboards little by little incorporates heavy guitar-electricity and massive, perforating flows of distorted noises mixed with industrial superimpositions. "From Defeat To Disintegration", a wonderful track played in collaboration with Nimh, propagates evanescent 'sound-masses' built through nostalgic, replicated piano melodies floating in the emotional desolation of dark-ambient, while a storm of electronic-noises approaches threateningly on the horizon wrapping and obfuscating each note, then to concede piano serenity after its dissolution, all in a succession of melancholy, tensions, sweetness, and inner torment. The release concludes with "The Smell Of A Dying Saviour", circumscribed at first within extended ambient chords ambient densely pigment of darkness, on which they reverberate endlessly heavy strokes of keyboard and a dry rumble of moving objects, subsequently eroded by vortices of metal screeching in a twist of gloomy orchestrality and atmospheric suspensions. Antikatechon is the designer of a spectral work such as an ectoplasmic emission, totally submerged by artificial noises and by harmonious emptiness, yet at the same time so psychically and physically penetrating, intelligible, able to go beyond the material meanings of sound, permeating of restlessness and alienation the senses of the listener. "I Feel Nothing But Repulsion" is a discographical event of extraordinary proportions in the scene globally defined as 'dark-ambient', highlighting him from many similar productions for having expanded the limited sonic expression towards something alive and functional, which effects pass through the mental vastness taking possession of our will and dematerializing within it any rational paradigm. This great album speaks by the powerful, charming voice of darkness. All the rest is only silence.

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Atropine - "Assailant" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  An in-depth biographical / record data sheet about the Norwegian duo-act called Atropine is available by connecting to the reviews section of the year 2014 of Vox Empirea, where the interested reader can obtain all information about this project in the space concerning their previous album "Recurring Nightmares". Alex D. Dahl - ALX - (electronics) and Tomas Kulberg - Cthulberg - (vox) return at the end of 2016 with a spectacular new full-length entitled "Assailant", published by the label EK Product, as always offering a polyhedric model in which they interact EBM / IBM / dark-electro / industrial elements. Of great visually striking is the sleeve artwork on which is printed the picture "Cercle" - created by the French painter, sculptor and performance artist Olivier De Sagazan - here photographically reinterpreted by Cthulberg; furthermore the album is mastered by Dirk Steye, a member with Mike Koenigsberger of the famous synthpop / electro-industrial band Accessory. In addition to the sound, the Atropine have conferred a particular importance to the texts, so desecrating and rancorous, pronounced with glacial roughness: their meanings are summarized symbolically in the most representative song of the album, "Exterminism", which declaration, readable on the inside panel of the digipak sleeve, is written by Demect Heraklit, aka the minister of the Norwegian underground-label Grimtown Records. The lyrics that support the full tracklist, then, are to be understood as the a personal revisiting of these concepts by Atropine, whose meanings become themes inspired both by the misanthropy and by the 'disantropy': they denote a ruthlessly realistic and disenchanted knowledge of modern society, portrayed as a conditioned, vulnerable humanity, consciously succubus of its absurdity and depravity: Atropine describe with great clarity pre-apocalyptic scenarios within which humanity lives controlled and deceived by the political powers, all perpetually on the brink of an imminent, inevitable nuclear catastrophe. The title-track of the album includes fifteen episodes characterized by geometric percussive schematisms combined with bristly vocals, acidly rabid and transfigured by filtrations, completed by dark counterpoint of keyboards, by hyper-processed sounds and symmetrical lines of sequencing. The opener "Life Leash" is an EBM / IBM / dark-electro track sung through ferocious vocal emissions, poured maliciously on downtempo rhythmics surrounded by murky synths, obsessive noise cycles and straight sequencers. In the next and namesake "Assailant", Tomas spreads a chant full of bitterness, whose function is solely to make intimidating the electro / EBM atmospheres of the track, created by mechanical midtempo scans alternated with a colorless and effervescent swarm of synthetic punctuations. "Scab Rapture" is totally played by old-school electro / EBM structures, fractionated by a minimalist, a squared percussive midtempo architecture, intercalated with a segmented sequencing, all in a disciplined set of techno-force dominated by the acid, angry tones of the singer. In the following "Hearse Hand" the sound becomes a cold and monochromatic electro / EBM transmission, built through skinny midtempo beats and repetitive sequencing, excoriated by the incessant, corrosive action of vocals. The electro / industrial "Sewercide" is outlined by rhythmic downtempo impulses, which hypnotic cadences, worn down by tonally distorted cusps, they rationally divide the track phases, synchronizing them with the perfidious and scratchy vocals of Tomas. The excellent "Exterminism" generates electro / EBM holograms to dance with tireless dynamism: so the sound is obscured by a caustic fog of synths and sequencers, while aggressive words pour angrily on midtempo drum-programming. "Naked Fear" is a suggestive dark-electro in which the vocals take the form of hissed phrasing and gloomy screams, while the keyboards replicate obsessive harmonies and the drum-machine processes coldly essential downtempo beats. We continue with the following "Vein Cramp" and with its delirious electro / IBM procedures expressed through compact rhythmic downtempo patterns of drum-sequencing, on which they overlapping urticant vocals and alienating synthetic manipulations. "Forfeit" features electro / EBM / IBM trajectories in which they swirl myriad of sequenced pixels and the singing is an excited flow of vocals malevolently hostile, punctuated by basic uptempo bpm's. "Dream Resection" is introduced by an extended firmament of percussive sub-frequencies, loops, inorganic emissions and reverberated whispers, whose subsequent development generates an electro / EBM / IBM tormented by harsh and thorny vocals, dictated in synchrony with a midtempo drumming and with saturated bass-lines. The solemn opening of keyboard and voice that introduces the next "See Through" - repeated later in the refrain - anticipates a dark electro / IBM context, led by a dense midtempo automatism and surrounded by burning radiations of voice, while further "Blood Sequence" plans a fast electro / EBM perfectly suited for dancefloors, performed by acidic vocal incitements, kinetic uptempo beats and by atmospheric vaporization of synths. "Destroys" is a dark-electro / industrial abysmally spectral, in which core they rising heavy-pads, synthetic noises and hoarse, cruel vocals, all made more sinister by a downtempo drum-programming. The percussiveness of "Ultra Swine" concatenate uniform midtempo beats simultaneously with heavy profusion of synths, desperate vocals and sequenced elaborations, for a disturbing dark-electro / industrial / IBM. A chapter of considerable caliber is also the last of the tracklist, "sedatives", an impetuous electro / EBM / IBM composed by fierce voice extensions disseminated among a seething, rippling sequencer and rhythmed by impure midtempo beats. A strident, high-energetic, at times violent, toxic and intransigent musicality, that of Atropine is together an hymn dedicated to the artificial intelligence of machines and a rigorous configuration of sounds with significantly provocative, destabilizing texts. The project demonstrates an increased ability to capture mentally the listener, transferring his imagination toward depressed, catastrophic landscapes, as visions altered by post-nuclear radioactive mists, all described with the deep, conflictual anger of those ones who declares themselves opposer against the social-policy 'system'. The album "Assailant" is true electro-evolution, a full-length overflowing of authenticity and experimentation that can be classified as one of the most audacious of the current international techno scene. Epic!

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Electric City Cowboys - "Spinning Around" EP - by Maxymox 2016

immage  The musical adventure of the Swedish Electric City Cowboys began in 2011, concretizing in 2012 through the execution of the first tracks resulting from the experimentation around the technological sound, researching and constructing a definitive stylistic formula. This challenging initial phase was further perfected by some studio collaborations with other musicians during their recording process; the band consists of Martin Johansson (vox / songwriting / synth), Mikael Johnsson (programming / mixing / synth) and Robert Carlsson (sound-effects / synths). The project has so far completed discographically the following self-produced digital-releases: the EP "Tune In And Stay Focused" of 2014 containing four songs, the single "Do You Want To Dance" also dating back the same year and then included in 2015 inside the prestigious digital compilation "Swedish Electro Scene Vol.3", which was followed in 2016 by the second EP called "Spinning Around" now reviewed by Vox Empirea. The sound created by Electric City Cowboys unites retrospective and modernism, assimilating simultaneously the vivacity, the freshness and the 'synthpopish optimism' of early-Depeche Mode, together with contemporary electronic perspectives and with a particular care on the melodic aspects, a detail this latter that stands out especially in the chant. A tangible example of all this is represented by "Fly With Me", the first of three songs of the Extended Play, in which the drum-programming scans precise midtempo beats, while the voice of Martin paints harmonious soundscapes embellished by terse multicoloured keyboards. "Spaceship" incorporates futurepop / synthpop features expressed with considerable esthetic sense, using extremely capturing vocals, a systematic, danceable midtempo percussive schemes and iridescent flows of keyboards, as well as the conclusive "You And I" externalizes positivity and a touch of electronic post-Depeche Mode's dynamism, capturing the listening with astounding ease, thanks to the comely vocal euphonies of the singer, pulsing midtempo drum-programming and sparkling choreographies of synths. The 80's synthpop evocations perceptible in the music of Electric City Cowboys are skillfully re-dimensioned, adapted to the new trends, revealing absolutely pleasant and balanced consonances, as well as a good technical preparation, elements that show a band in progress ready to finally face the ambitious goal of a successful album for all the avantgarders. Like the previous releases, even the EP "Spinning Around" manifests explicitly the project's ability to converge into the sound a luxuriant inventive, which, through the logic of the machines, it becomes a generator of polarizing melodies, in a perfect symbiosis between past and present. For those who long ago had lost their contact with the true synthpop music, Electric City Cowboys are now an indispensable opportunity to rediscover it more compelling than ever, riding with them towards new electronic horizons. Yippee ki-yay!

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Future Perfect - "After The Fall" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Founded in 2009 in North Wales, Future Perfect is a duo-act in the progressive growth, consisting in the spouses Simon Owen (musics / lyrics / vox / production) and Rebecca Owen ( musics / vox / synths ), plus the artistic and remixing collaboration entrusted to the expert Noel Canney. The musical style belonging to this interesting project has a core predominantly futurepop / synthpop, combined, especially in the past works, to darkwave and EBM shades, in which we can hear a sound dynamically danceable and technologically advanced, full of pleasant melodies, terse vocal harmonies and incisive rhythmical metrics. The Future Perfect's discography currently enumerates the self-released debut-album "Dirty Little Secrets" of ten tracks, published in 2010 by FP Recordings - the label owned by the duo - followed by the twelve songs included in the second full-length simply entitled "Escape", fired simultaneously in 2012 by FP Recordings and by the super German brand Conzoom Records, then continuing in 2015 with two other releases: the present album "After The Fall" now reviewed by Vox Empirea and published again by the two labels FP Recordings / Conzoom Records, succeeded by the limited edition single "Fall", licensed by Conzoom Records: in its tracklist of six episodes are contained the remixed versions by the German electropop / synthrock duo Midnight Resistance, by the Danish remixer Flemming Jensby - aka Sappy - by the musician / remixer Richard Broadhead - aka Lord Richard Broadhead - and by the Mexican D.J. / producer Dimitri Berzerk. The album "After The Fall", produced dall'engineer / arranger English Russ Hayes, offers a captivating sonic soundscape through twelve tracks built with method, expressiveness and, in large part, with all the good electronic oldschool cognitions taught by icons such as Depeche Mode, O.M.D. and Pet Shop Boys. The first songs of the title track is the same "Fall", a futurepop / synthpop that does by immediacy melodic by the rhythm its main strengths, thanks to the catchy Simon's vocals interfaced to intense keyboard chords, all with linear sequenced architectures and with danceable midtempo drum-programming. The seductive voice of Rebecca is the protagonist of the next "Dangerous Desires", created by futurepop / synthpop basements in which the keyboard and the piano punctuations give the song a charming and elegantly shadowy aura, embellished by precise sequencer and energized by midtempo drum-programming. "Walking On Knives" is a short chapter conceived through thick sequencing on which are mechanically distribute robotic downtempo cadences, rapidly transmuted into midtempo percussiveness with futuristic electronic expansions. The harmonious, resolute chant of Simon embellishes the following "Neo Rom Com", a synthpop animated by compact keyboard sections and by midtempo beats of drum-programming, which synergy originates a dancenfloor of great effect. "Protect And Survive" spreads a swirl of vitality, focussing its futurepopish structure on the vocal melodism of Rebecca and Simon, whose singing is perfectly synchronized with midtempo drumming and with the bright synths. Differently from the previous song, the instrumental interlude "A.D.S.R." propagates dark pads, gloomy electronic tolling and suggestive replications of Rebecca's spoken-words; she's also the vocal interpreter of "Spaces", an atmospheric, danceable futurepop crossed by keyboard profusions and circular midtempo drum-programming. The futurepopish paradigm of the next "Excess" predisposes more tense electronic sounds, by aggregating imperious synths extensions, pulsing midtempo beats and the authoritarian voices of the two singers, in a track to listen and dance with loud volume. The full-lenght continues with three remixed versions, first of which is the revised version of "Neo Rom Com", skillfully re-designed by Glynn Jaine, member of the Scottish electro-duo called Destination: the artist strengthens the original fluidity and the percussive timbre of this track emphasizing its dance potential, also integrating more technological tactics that raise exponentially the futuristic dimension of musics. The interplay between Future Perfect and Immune System - aka the American's industrial / electro-rock musician Todd C.Ruzicka - generates the remix of "Priest Of Excess", a solid electro / EBM for dancefloors, composed by mighty midtempo bmp's, vocal transfigurations and alienating modulations of synths. Destination also remixed "(After The) Fall", making it irresitibile by a functional range of electronic / vocals arrangements, which formulas gives to this track an exciting and very danceable sound shape. The instrumental version of "Fall" closes the title-track, highlighting the song's framework in a wonderful, engaging futurepop / synthpop performance played by keyboards, sequencing and midtempo drum-beats. Conzoom Records demonstrates as always its remarkable sagacity extrapolating only the best from the electronic macrocosm, selecting in this occasion the music of Simon and Rebecca Owen, two musicians gifted with artistic understanding, excellent compositional skills and concrete inventiveness. The approach with the album "After The Fall" will be a special opportunity to come into contact once again with an inebriating hi-tech pop, totally enjoyable and dance-oriented, that will flood with pleasure your listening. The Future Perfect duo is a mature project, determined to acquire its own space within the boundless electro scene, presenting itself honorably, with style and distinction. The sound of tomorrow is already here, to make 'perfect our future'!

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Holygram - "Holygram ep" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  The Cologne based formation called Holygram descends conceptually and musically from the timeless 80's waver / post-punker phenomenon, whose dogmas represent for this band an existential model and a reference point. The line-up predisposes since 2015 the following members: Patrick ( vox ), Marius ( guitar), Pylos ( synths), Bennett ( bass ) and Sebastian ( drums ). In the project's sound we perceive innovative, experimental new wave / post-punk and industrial-krautrock solutions, created by assembling perfectly the intrumentality until obtaining autumnal and sombre harmonies, together with a massive use of melancholic and emotional vocals. The namesake debut on Extended Play of 2016 entitled "Holygram" - mastered at the Amen Studios in Cologne by the electronic musician Bob Humid - officially is today the first and only realisation published by the band: in addition to the digital version it appears in a rare tape-version format limited to fifty black and fifty white cassette edited by the German label fuck.your.city.cllctv, while there are currently underway the negotiations for a future release on vinyl. Particularly suggestive, as minimalistic, is also the EP's sleeve art conceived by Yutha Adiputra Yumanaka. The five songs tracklist begins from the sad-waving structures of "Hideaway", in which a regular midtempo drumming hypnotically punctuates the rhythm, accompanied by symmetrical pulsations of bass, while the Patrick's voice reverbs nostalgically, wrapped by the enveloping notes of keyboard and by sentimental melodies of guitar. Fast, exquisitely gothic and desperately romantic, the next "Daria" configures a new wave / electro / post-punk scheme of considerable level and suitable for the alternative dancefloors, played through enthralling uptempo drum-beats on which they develop electric arpeggios of guitar - empowered during the nice refrain - bass-line intermittences, intensive synths and through amazing decorations of chant. "Acceleration" exposes a languid new wave melodism exalted above all in the vocal configuration - always pronounced with sadness and with a vague glumness - further embellished by dreamy hits of guitar and by soft keyboard chords, circumscribed within the bass punctuations. The solid, alienating post-punk curvatures of guitar and bass are audible clearly in the following "Still There", combining with the elegiac waving choreography designed by the vocals and by keyboards, while speedy uptempo beats give grit and dynamism to the song. Even more inflamed by the post-punker fire, the conclusive "Distant Light" is excoriated by the abrasive, vibrant guitar and by hard uptempo percussions, all segmented by bass sections and colored by grayish nuances of synth, in a whole of frenetic energy, harshness and tension, on which Patrick spreads his mournful and tormented chant. Emerging band of unquestionable value, that of Holygram is an active part of two cultural movements only apparently hidden in the shadow but perpetually in ferment, which, year after year, celebrate and glorify themselves through ever new musicians and fans, in an infinite progression of subgenres and original interpretations. This German ensemble, as well as maintaining stable its own integrity and their stylistic identity track by track, propose an exploratory, visionary kind of music, characterized by a supreme charm and by an impeccable technicality. The five episodes of this release share introspectively with the listener communicating the dissatisfaction, the conscious isolationism, the discomfort, the urban neurasthenia and the disregarded hopes that afflict the modern generations, making the every day life a true act of heroism. The Holygram convince and conquer us without reservations: if you are really a true new wave / post-punk follower search and have this EP will be your imperative mission.

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Insight - "A Light In The Darkness" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  The Barcelona's Raúl Muñoz-Torrero Gálvez in 2012 founded his one-man act called Insight after having played in several other projects, such as the synthpopish compatriot Neighbours, with which he played keyboards until 2010, when the protagonist decided to write, create and produce his own music, marked by post-Depeche Mode structures and by extremely capturing melodies inspired by Mesh, De/Vision and IAMX. By the encounter between Raúl and the electro musician Paco Butrón - aka Cyborgdrive - was born a solid artistic relationship - assisted in its instrumental parts and in its production phases by external members such as the guitarist César Merino (Ocultas Intenciones) and the drummer José Luis Morales - through whom Insight distributed digitally in 2015 the first basic-edition of the debut album entitled "A Light In The Darkness", containing ten tracks, followed by the five songs included in the first single "The Same Mistake" - among which they stand out the excellent remixes by Silica Gel, Alexis Voice, L2M and Cyborgdrive - and then by the five ones of the second single "Damage" - embellished by the remixes of Techni-ka, Misterfly, Benelux and Cetu Javu - . The big potentials contained in the full-lenght convinced Insight in 2016 to propose a second version of it that preserved unchanged the same original sounds, plus an extra sequence of remixes addressed to the electro-clubs. Cyborgdrive, responsible in 2015 of the mastering and the arrangements of "A Light In The Darkness", produces this new album published in limited edition by the Muscovite label ScentAir Records, also participating in one of the six re-works. Reportable for its importance is the Insight's appearance in two digital compilations: "Neonautics v.02", edited by the Russian home skyQode and "Synthetic Generation Vol. 2 Mix", distributed by the Spanish label Amuza Producciones. The full-length now reviewed by Vox Empirea enumerates a total of sixteen well-built, incisive tracks, characterized by a sombrely synthpopish sound with a particular dancing orientation. Melodic keyboard textures, symmetrical sequencing, midtempo drumming and elegant piano partitures are the elements of the instrumental intro "Sensations", followed by the subsequent "A Long Time", a danceable early De/Vision synthpop perfectly cadenced by midtempo drum-programming, over which Raúl combines with mathematical exactness his clear voice to the sequencer sections and to the enthralling euphonies of keyboards. The pressing sonicity of "Fame" - published in 2016 as a self-produced five-tracks digital single, with remixes of Destino Plutón, Axel Samano and RME - gives priority to synthpop strategies entrusted mainly to the vocal foreground and to 'very danceable' rhythms processed by the drum-machine: the result is a track full of Modernist charm, performed through exciting singing and keyboard solutions pulled by resonant midtempo bpm's. Then comes the amazing "Alive", probably the best episode of the entire tracklist, an irresistible synthpop planned in every detail, consisting in a millimeter midtempo drum-programming and sequencer, flanked by the compelling Raúl's intonations and by extensive keyboards, in a set of electronic, danceable melodies and vocal magnetism. The superb clubby sounds of "The Same Mistake" are created by the interplay among linear midtempo drum-programming, that give the sound a great power, metronomic sequencing, fluid-harmonious vocals and brilliant keyboard accompaniments, while the melancholic accents of the next "Insane" are especially perceivable in the chant, whithin which Raúl gracefully disclaims his vocals in a soft synthpop contest built through midtempo fractionations, sequenced punctuations and passionate orchestrations of keyboards that culminate in their final with nostalgic piano counterpoints. The dance-synthpopish scheme of "My Windows" runs on straight midtempo drum-programming / sequencing pulsations, surrounded by iridescent keyboards trails, passionate vocals and by the electric-guitar riffs played by the guest César Merino. "Damage" spreads a synthpop musicality always danceable and pervaded of electro-charm to which you can't resist, consisting in sleek vocal melodies and radiant keyboard symphonies that seduce instantaneously, all transfixed by midtempo bpm's. "Alone" expands all its electronic dynamism through midtempo intermittences, polychromies keyboard, immersive vocals and, again, through the guitar riffs of César Merino. "Woman In Black" is a sad-synthpop rhythmed by a slow percussiveness and distinguished by a more explicit spleen, expressed by the sorrowful Raúl's chant in a profusion of downtempo drumming and suggestive keyboards. This new version of the album evolves with the first of the six remixed bonus-tracks, the reconstruction of "Damage" elaborated by the German synthpop duo In Good Faith: the sound changes partially its form, revealing dance-minded technicalities and arrangements that capture mind and body. The Spanish electro composer / producer / remixer Techni-ka re-designs impeccably "Alive", decelerating its speed, adding corroborant dancehall complements and increasing the percussive depth of the original model, as well as Cyborgdrive rebuilds "My Window", introducing in it rarefied dubstep references and red-blooded beats that inciting to dance. The Spanish electro-musician Jaime Fernández - aka Neosynth - remixes "Fame", activating an highly attractive sonic spectrum created through synthetic modulations and percussive automatism that transform this track in an authentic dancefloor filler. Alexis Voice, the electro-Hungarian composer, renews "Alone", increasing exponentially its danceability and its charisma through a mesmerizing flow of sonic luminescences and drumming, while the Brazilian synthpop project Technique reformulates the final track of the release, "Damage", making further enchanting its registry through a more essential percussiveness and dance-electro configurations of high class. Despite he's at the beginning of his career, the newcomer Insight demonstrates an amazing compositional and executive style worthy of the best exponents of the synthpop scene. No complexity, no superstructures: the musics of "A Light In The Darkness" are easily and pleasantly functional, complete of that rare, indispensable virtuosity that converts sound into something exceptional. The vocal / instrumental melodies are imprinted in the listener's memory with incredible naturalness, while the drumming and the effervescent technological artifices load the atmospheres of lively dance-energy, completing a full-lenght evaluable only in eulogic terms, thanks also to the six outstanding remixes which will be all the rage in the playlists of the most advanced electro-alternative d.j.'s. This musician picked up precisely the request from the masses for an enjoyable but not mainstreamed synthpop, responding adequately with an high yield and successful album. The 'light' switched on by Insight will shine for longest time: play it again and again and again!

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Leopard Flowers - "Autumn Glades Of Everlasting Peace" + "Isa" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Behind the artistic name of the solo-act Leopard Flowers there's Holger Gramlich ( guitars, bass, synthesizer, composition, recording, mixing ). German from Odenwald, this emerging experimenter has the ability to lead the listener towards an intimate, minimal sound, always engaging, filled with different and noble themes. The origins of the project can be dated around 2008, the same year in which Holger began to record some tracks, formulating his style through the evocation of complelling soundscapes and immersive atmospheres that capture for long the listener's imagination. The compositions created by the protagonist, all entirely instrumental, simultaneously take the forms of acoustic-cinematic ambient suites and placid neofolkish ballads, in which Leopard Flowers introduces meanings inspired by the natural wonders of the sylvan dimension, by the sensations perceived during the loneliness, or by the algid beauty of Winter and also by the mysteries of the infinite Life-Death cycle, including references from the ancient European pre-Christian epics of Norse mythology, together with other inexplicable, personal emotions arising unconsciously from Holger's soul during the soundwriting. This Vox Empirea's review is about the only two limited-edition hand-numbered self-produced releases, published by Leopard Flowers through Kristallwald Tonträger, the label instituted by himself: they are respectively the 2013's debut-album "Autumn Glades Of Everlasting Peace", containing nine tracks and distributed in 135 copies, plus the 2015's 7" single "Isa" of two tracks, licensed in 200 exemplars. Both records are mastered by Axel Frank, founder of the German psychedelic-neofolkish project called Werkraum and former member of the Austrian experimental-neofolk band Sturmpercht. Exploring the tracklist of the album we find at first the opener "Tears On the Snow", an evocative, nostalgic and vaguely shady ambient song, built through long pads, gloomy bass resonances and melodious flashes of synth. In the next "Embrace of Leaves And Branches", the skillful Holger's fingers pinch harmoniously the strings of the acoustic guitar, filling the air of neofolk euphonies overflowing with melancholic grace, while the dim light of the synth and the weak pulses of bass strictly dialogue between them, interweaving psychedelic solitary notes and fascinating ambient chords. The following "Awake In The Morning Dew" combines slow arpeggios of acoustic guitar with gaseous keyboard expansions, generating oneiric neofolk-ambient sounds fragile as crystal, such as those that constitute the subsequent "Thicket's Shelter", a song built on peaceful neofolk consonances of acoustic guitar, under which they flow melodiously soft ambient pads and the delicate bass segments. "A Murmur Deep In Hazy Woods" extends motionless, surreal keyboard prolongations, dark as the night mist through the trees of a forest, recalling within the listener legendary visions and the sense of the unknown, all by the hypnotic fixity of ambient sound. "Sorrow Thorns" is a relaxing neofolk theme in which the harmonization between soft caresses of acoustic guitar and melancholy pads creates diaphanous reverberations that widen slowly, like circles in the water of a lake. In the bucolic poem "When Trees Fall Asleep" you can hear ambient-oriented melodies based mainly on solemn pads and clear synth punctuations, all in an elegiac context of sounds and perspectives ideally that lead to the conception of spirituality. "Grieving Heart" is a small miracle of refinement and folk-ambient harmony in which Holger expresses sensibility, passion, elegance, in a pindaric journey through plucked scales of acoustic guitar and ethereal keyboard symphonies. "(Silence) For Evermore" concludes the album's title-track, with a folkish-ambient episode rich of suggestion, in which they overlap languidly dark pads, opalescent synth sections and graceful acoustic guitar's counterpoints. The first of the two tracks enclosed in the 7 "single "Isa" is entitled "Everwood", romantically intense and melancholy, composed by Holger as always exalting the poetic arpeggiated acoustic guitar, from which they rise suavely neofolk melodies further embellished by nostalgic keyboard orchestrations, identically to the beautiful "Valkyrja", in which once again the sublimation of neofolker criteria is carried out by the deep, melodic, poignant mood transmitted by the acoustic guitar's strings and by the heartfelt keyboard streams, in a highly seductive track, whose music enchants, ectasia. The attraction towards the Leopard Flower's sound is inevitable: it born spontaneously, by the immediate, simple contact with the inherently contemplative climax of transcendent harmonies, resulting by a visceral and instinctive interpretation of the hidden 'space-time-reality concepts. Holger observes the world in its Autumn phase, meditating on the eternal succession of decay and rebirth, on the rituals that make it so special this transitional season, directing in a second time his attention towards love and then towards the remote Nordic sagas, elaborating thoughts, leaving feelings to turn into music the most emblematic details of his reflective analysis. The results of this enterprise are an album and a 7" single both in possession of special, catchy beauty, which unify balanced meditative ambient paths with the traditional neofolk culture, requiring the total, unconditional emotional participation of the listener to be fully understood. Enter into Leopard Flowers world, close your eyes and begin to dream.

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Lucifer's Aid - "New To Reality" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Harsh vocals, squared percussiveness, skinny and poisonous lyrics, together with hard sounds processed through hardware instrumentations, characterize the EBM / industrial style of the Swedish solo-act Lucifer's Aid, founded in 2016 in Stockholm by Carl Nilsson, member with Johnny Hagel of the industrial / melodic death-metal duo called Lithium and protagonist with Carolina Lindahl of the 'cold school Body Music' project Operating Tracks. The music created by Lucifer's Aid flaunts a particular, innate originality, taking simultaneously inspiration from the pioneering EBM schemes belonging to Belgian Klinik and from those of their front man Dirk Ivens in his technological design Dive, also applying many experimental rhythmic-noise / industrial models generated by the German Noisex dating back to his discography recorded for the legendary home Ant-Zen; they resulting frequencies electronically powerful, dynamic, which imperatives are dancefloor movement and sensory-mental involvement. The debut-album "New To Reality" - released in 2016 with the two digital-singles "Deep Inside" and "Dead Colors" by the prodigious Swedish label Progress Productions - is a concentrate of innovation, research and development of avant-garde sonic concepts, respecting at the same time the classic retrospectives of the Neue Deutsche Welle. The ten tracks of full-length - which sleeve is created by Krister Hessling, the member of the famous Swedish melodic EBM band 8kHz Mono - start with the initial "Unfollow Me," an obscure EBM / industrial song, propelled by with midtempo strength by the drum machine, while Carl's voice spreads bitterness rising among the threatening chords of synth and the linear sequencing. More slowly scanned, the next "Deep Inside" manifests EBM / industrial prerogatives and an essential technologism of latest generation, shaping an hypnotic, compact set of sounds in which the cadences of drum-programming tow, like an automated march, disciplined, evil vocals and matt keyboard repetitions. Rigorous downtempo drumming, synchronized with the sequencer and with gloomily hissed vocals, forge the EBM / industrial structure of "The Taste". In the skeletal EBM / industrial geometry of "Corrupt" they vibrate the drum'n'bass frequencies calculated by the rhythmic implant, which thick partitures sustain a hoarse, monolithic chant, sporadically alternated with siren pulses. A consistent downtempo drum-programming whips the following "Follow Me", propagating percussive symmetries electronically impure, on which Carl disseminates his short, angry voicals, enlightened by the cyclical rotations of sequencer, in a EBM / industrial track full of dark fascination. A frenetic midtempo drumbeat shakes "Dead Colors" giving off enormous dance energy, while corrosive sections of voice emphasize an EBM / industrial climax obsessively and mechanically shaded. Intermittent downtempo bass-lines pulsate robotically in "Click Disease", intersecting the sequenced punctuations, the livid, reverberated Carl's vocalizations and the minimal synth, all in a context brimful of charming dark-electro / industrial atmospheres, the same ones listenable also in "Nobody Cares", a track in which the midtempo subdivisions of drum machine become impetuous, cold metronomic beats that surround the processed vocal-loops and the subterranean sequencer oscillations. "No Way Back" instead possesses a more slimmer EBM / electro physiognomy, played exclusively by a rectilinear midtempo drum-sequencing on which Carl incites the dance pronouncing nervous and concise vocalizations. Percussive metrics always rational and high-sounding circumscribe also the closing song "Keep The Dark", extending heavy midtempo bpm's midtempo perfectly combined to the sequenced trajectory and to the rarefied convergences of synth, fractioning the EBM / industrial paradigm together with iced, livid vocals. An hispid sonicity and a vocal melodism almost completely annulled build this compelling album in which you can perceive elements finalized to the renovation of the by now 'over-used' Electronic Body Music cliché; Lucifer's Aid offers us a different reinterpretation of this special kind of music, but without radically altering its peculiar basements. "New To Reality" is therefore a document that deserves the unconditional approval by the more expert and undogmatic listeners, whom will find in this release a tracklist able to surprise them, entertain them and make non stop dance them. Want for more is at least impossible.

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Protectorate - "Protectorate" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  EBM / industrial one-act since 2005 impersonated by Kalle Lindberg (vox / lyrics / programming / lead guitar / lead bass). The Finnish artist originally comes from the industrial-metal scene: in fact the protagonist has founded in 1997, with the guitarist Lasse Alander - who's also the Protectorate's live collaborator - the band called Republic Of Desire, in which Kalle was the vocalist and the responsible of programming, while since more recent times he's part, always with Lasse Alander, of the electro / industrial / EBM duo Cardinal Noire. Protectorate incorporates in a single, solid paradigm, factory rumorism and industrial 80's / 90's sonorities, always applying the criterion of "quality over quantity", avoiding an excessive number music products but focusing mainly on the uniqueness of each song, taking care minutely their technical form and the tracklist details. The success factors that characterize the project's sound system are first of all the original combination between refinement and extreme attention to the most catchy electro-dance strategies, through which Kalle plans simultaneously exclusive technological modulations like Front Line Assembly / Front 242 / Skinny Puppy / Portion Control, combined with exquisite mainstream formulations inspired to Depeche Mode, plus certain rock-oriented references near Fields Of The Nephilim. After a long period of demo-experiments, Protectorate concretely began its production in 2011 and publishing in 2012 the self-produced EP "Come Fall" which contains four electro / industrial / dark ambient songs, followed in 2016 by the long waited and namesake debut album "Protecorate" now analyzed by Vox Empirea, licensed by the formidable Italian label EK Product; the measured number of tracks included in the release, eight in all, once again confirms the principles of high selectivity and focus on the substantial requirements on which it bases the musician's discography, that is maximum essentiality, maximum efficiency. Aggressive vocals, timbrically cruel and abrasive, drumming arithmetically dissected by the drum-programming, linear sequencing and murky synth coverages are the prerogatives of this great full-length suitable to liven up the most avant garde dancefloors; the first episode, "Exile", openly expresses its menacing EBM / industrial aura cadencing powerful midtempo bpm's on the lethal Kalle's voice, while all around the keyboards propagate gloomy chords which giving the track a solemn authoritativeness, as well as the EBM / industrial scheme of the subsequent "Infocon" is dominated by a disturbing skittishness built using harsh vocals, so bristling and sharp like blades, together with a midtempo rhythm precisely scanned, turbid flows of synths and sequenced particles. "Clean Break" is filled with explosive EBM / industrial vitality generated through the vehemence of midtempo drum-machine beats similar to an implacable flagellation, caustic vocalizations, electric guitar riffs and dark synth emissions. The following "Neoreaktion" is an EBM / industrial track in which the adverse and hoarse tones pronounced by Kalle they amalgamate to a toxic keyboard, fluttering nervously above a midtempo drum-programming, in a swirl of alienation, sonic tensions and atmospheres sinisterly apocalyptical. The following "Proconsul" is punctuated by downtempo mechanical synchronies, which driving with obsessive slowness hallucinated vocals, a biting guitar stridency in the background and obscure symphonies of keyboard, thus composing an EBM / industrial radiated of cold rage, the same one audible even in "Overproduction", a dark-electro / EBM / industrial downtempo that emphasizes, especially in the uptempo impetuous refrain, the Kalle's chant, perpetually angry, venomous, surrounded by spectral keyboard fluorescences. The dark-electro / EBM / industrial structures of "Severed Heads" configure heavy sound masses, perturbing rhythmically our senses through downtempo rectilinear cycles of drum-machine and sequencing, grim voice, dark saturations of synths and dissonant guitar shocks. "Empty Faces" concludes the title track proposing a superb song executed with impeccable art, by vocal roughness overlying on rational downtempo drumming, symmetrical sequencing and magnificent orchestrations of keyboard, all elements that make this song a true dark-electro / EBM / industrial monument. Protectorate certifies definitively his style made of exasperatingly hard, monochrome sounds, created through advanced technicalities and solid pride; the album "Protectorate" is a seismic-electronic wave of huge proportions, which force inhibits the body each any staticity imposing on it a perpetual rhythmic motion. Kalle Lindberg not only reinterprets the classic EBM / industrial models, but he radically breaks down their concepts for then reassembling them by winning logics, all until the achieving of an advanced musicality that spreads vibrating sensations and large doses of energy. This debut release greatly increases the evaluation of Protectorate, classifying him with full honors as a talented phenomenon projected at full speed toward the contemporary technological universe. If you feel real electro-fans able to go beyond the convention, don't give up this album! Listen carefully to it and you'll understand why.

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Sjöblom - "6" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Solo-venture founded in 2016 by the Stockholmer Johan Sjöblom, vocalist and guitarist for a long decade in the line-up of the Swedish new wave / post-punk / dark-indie rock band called The Exploding Boy. The project Sjöblom was created by the direct will of the protagonist, conscious to have acquired over the years an appreciable musical experience, eager to express it fully in all its grandeur, concentrating his inspiration and his enthusiasm in a release played only through the best strategies taken simultaneously from old retrospectives and from modern concepts, but, above all, that it highlights in unequivocal and clear way the new, personal Johan's artistic identity, today more than ever characterized by authenticity. Always stylistically oriented around obscure indie-pop, post-punk and synthpop consonances, Sjöblom contemplates in the debut-album entitled "6" - "six" as the total number of his published full-lenghts, including this latter one as soloist plus the five ones recorded with the quartet The Exploding Boy - additional darkwave, gothic and indie-rock elements, shaping them into a whole overflowing of atmospheric sounds that possess the ability to capture magically the listener's imagination. The full-lenght, edited in 2016 in limited 500 copies by the French label Manic Depression and the Swedish Ad Inexplorata, is recorded by Jon Bordon - component of the Swedish new wave band / nu-disco / synthpop band Melody Club and also guest-musician of the Swedish post-punk / new wave / indie-rock artist Nicole Sabouné - who contributes in many tracks of "6" as guitarist, bassist, keyboardist and programmer. Another important collaborator involved in the album is Joakim Janthe, drummer from the Swedish post-punk / shoegaze / indie-rock project Principe Valiente, as well as percussionist of the aforementioned Nicole Sabourné. In the credits also it appears the name of Daniel Kaufeldt, responsible for the mastering, who, together with J. & M. Nordh Svensson, is member of the Swedish electro / industrial / EBM duo-act Alien Waveform. The first of the eight tracks included in the album "6" is "Enemies", a melancholic synthpopish / indie-pop ballad opened and developed through crystalline, soft acoustic guitar arpeggios and through evocative keyboard flows, under which they concatenate the midtempo bpm's of the drum-sequencing, for a synergy of crepuscular and sorrowful notes on which they stand out beautifully the Johan's intonations. "Oh My Heart" - one of the two album songs available on the web as video, directed by the Swedish photographer and editor Andreas Hillerborg - constitutes not only the best track of the release, but also one of the three singles from it: its catchy sonorities are pure magnificence tendency 'vieux-style' to live until the last moment, abducted through the magnetism emitted by the combination between melodic 'waver keyboard harmonies, post-punk electricity by guitar and bass, solid uptempo drumming plus the desperate vocalism of the singer, all sublimated and made unforgettable in the amazing refrain. The nostalgic "The Choice", also proposed as a single track and viewable on the web in video version, spreads an indie pop-rock / wave aura caressed by romantic gothic consonances: its structure, rhythmed by downtempo scans, is built through graceful counterpoints of acoustic guitar and bass, while the melancholic mood is manifested with innate naturalness by the Johan's voice, capable of penetrating deeply into the recesses of our spirits. Third single and fourth track of the album is the following "The Last Call", an indie-pop episode shaded by the obscurity of the post-punk and darkwave, is played by through circular bass lines, piano punctuations, extensive keyboard coverages and segments of electric guitar, all melodiously embellished by noir vocals. Another eulogy dedicated to the melancholy is "Not A Man For You", a sad indie-pop song orchestred by symmetrical midtempo drum-programming on which they rise delicate textures of acoustic guitar, warm chords of keyboard and the wistful voice of Johan, which, in the monophonic refrain, blends perfectly with that of the guest singer Emma Pavlovic Svensson. "The Loyal" predisposes dark indie-rock architectures full of nostalgic sentimentality, accentuated by the depressed tonality of vocals, intertwined in turn with the compact modulations of electric guitar, with the regular pulsations of bass, well marked downtempo drumming and with the surrounding wakes of keyboard. The indie-rock / wave procedures of "The Girl", evolve through passionate vocals but they hide a subtle torment, liven up by uptempo percussiveness in support to massive extensions of guitar, electric and acoustic, all amplified by the pads of keyboard and fractionated by cadenced of bass. Last song of tracklist is "Trains", an immersive sad indie-rock placidly sung by Johan's voice, softly arpeggiated by the strings of acoustic guitar and completed by brief harmonies of organ, all until to the junction with an instrumentality reinforced by sections of downtempo drumming and by forcing of electric guitar and bass. The album "6" redefines the artistic perspective of Johan Sjöblom, so far relatively conditioned by constraints due to militancy in the band The Exploding Boy; this enterprising solo experience finally projects the musician on the underground scene, revealing him as a talented composer in possessing of a remarkable sensitivity within and of an high class voice. From the eight songs of the album "6" comes an immediate feeling: they are living creatures with soul, they hold their arms searching a perceptive person, eager to become a part of his world. The music of Sjöblom enhances your introspection, generating intense emotions. It needs no further words to be described: a first listen is enough to make feel all its preciousness and this is the most intriguing aspect of this great full-length. You will be touched by invisible hands of ecstasy.

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Telegraph - "Beyond Good And Evil" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  The Bari based Telegraph can be considerable as an emerginging and very interesting phenomenon, an eminent presence in the Italian alternative technological music scene; this duo-act, founded in 2010, consists of David Colella ( Dave ) ( vox / synths ) and Francesco Romeo Sacco ( Romeo ) ( electric guitar / synths / backing vox ), plus the external collaborations of the live musicians Angelo Porcelli ( electronic drums ) and Marina Mundo ( keyboards / synths ). The Telegraph's sound, explicitly derivative from the evergreen 80's reminiscences as Depeche Mode, Ultravox and Gary Numan, may be circumscribed into a range mainly extended to the retro synthpop-electropop / electro-wave / electro-rock, with episodic insertion of EBM, darkwave , industrial and post-punk: they resulting compositions sublimated in every their aspect by different but skillfully unified style, whose primary virtue is the ability to transmit catchy modulations and meaningful lyrics able to entertain with no pause the listener and remain long in his memory. All these details are detectable in the two past self-produced releases "Open Wounds" - demo-EP of seven tracks self-released in 2013 and "The Veil of Maya", digital-single released in 2014. Remarkable is also the resourcefulness of Telegraph regarding the direct contact with their public, activity that lists live performances held in conjunction with interesting projects from the underground electro: the Italians Surgery ( industrial ), Ottodix ( synthpop / electropop / new wave ) and the Berlin Peine Perdue ( synthpop / minimal-wave ). The debut album "Beyond Good And Evil" - released in 2016 by the Muscovite label ScentAir Records - besides having an excellent sonic value, it recalls the desire to break the misleading barrier of hypocrisy wherever it's found, finally revealing to the aware observer's eyes the true, insidious nature hidden in many social and interpersonal dynamics, thus placing the individual in front of the authenticity - sometimes painful, destabilizing but always liberating and salvific - of the reality. Each song of the tracklist is a disillusioned, deep existential analysis, somentimes cold but never really cynical, which investigates on the relationships that exist every day in the human life, here conceptually expressed within intense, functional lyrics, able to make reflect with astonishing intelligibility on the reasons of the mistrust, this last, despite all, indispensable to unmask the falseness, to lacerate the deceptive drape behind which all truths, no longer clouded by appearances, they show their own perfidious and so far unsuspected essence, all serenely facing the consequences of this courageous choice understood as an act of force, just to save men from their own, innate attitude to sels-destruction, finally instilling in them the hope to believe in the intentions of others. The album, consisting of thirteen songs including three remixes, opens with the introductory and namesake "Beyond Good And Evil", an integrally intrumental execution characterized by atmospherical filmic keyboard pads loaded of great suggestiveness, to which they follow the dark-synthpopish structures of "The Veil Of Maya" - the song that more than others interprets the spirit and music style of Telegraph in this album - created through a guessed combination of post-Kraftwerk elements, especially in the vocal inflections which anticipate the refrain, in the melodious keyboards counterpoints and in the geometric midtempo drum-programming. The next "I Wanted Love" predisposes singing and instrumental paradigms strongly Depeche Mode minded, in which the voice, overshadowed by disillusioned and bitter tones, exposes an inner drama spreading enchanting melodies that join with the rigor of synths and with the midtempo scans of drum-machine. Introspection and melancholy distinguish instead "Game Over", preferring solutions oriented towards the most passionate and obscure early-Depeche Mode: inside the singer's voice, tormented by suffering, they vibrate the typical vocal cadences of Dave Gahan, as well as instrumental architectures, moving with electronic slowness, harmoniously accompany the chant, formulating depressed synthpop landscapes supported by a minimal line of rhythmic downtempo fragments, on which, further on, they develop keyboard orchestrations and martial drumming that add to the whole a touch of solemnity like the Sergio Leone's soundtracks. "This World's Too Loud" enlivens the musics through energetic bpm's midtempo and sequencer, ensuring wide spaciousness to solid and well-intoned vocals, electric guitar segments, multi-chromatic keyboards and, finally, a nostalgic, solo, sad epilodue of ropes, in a song that blends electro-synthpop and waving sonorities. "I Prefer Machines" decelerates the percussiveness, turning it into mechanical downtempo beats, while the penetrating euphonies of vocalist stand out with all their thoughtful sorrow, alternating systematically them with the rigorous coverage of synths. The instrumental "Hikikomori" bases its electro-synthpop foundations on downtempo drum-programming substructures, luminescent sequenced intermittences and soft keyboards flows, while "Something To Live For" contextualizes impeccably the interaction among synthpop, new wave and electro-rock, all through a disciplined, harmonious voice design placed within midtempo drum-programming, further accelerated in the final, together with electric guitar riffs and evanescent shades of keyboards. "Renaissance", vigorously pushed by precise automatic uptempo subdivisions, is an highly danceable electropop / electro-wave track: it conjugates vitality, determination and melodism, permeating the sound with compact vocals, surrounded by pulsing sequencing and backlit by sparkling evolutions of synths. The title-track continues with the last of the songs before the three remakes, "The Losers", so melancholically synthpopish, vocalized by warm, passionate intonations, embellished by harmonious keyboard constructs and punctuated by metronomic midtempo symmetries of drum-programming. "Game Over" is remixed with masterful technique, enriching both the instrumentality that the percussions by elegant arrangements and highlighting strategically in the most appropriate junctures the majesty of the cinematic refrain. The German electro / synthpop trio called Dynamic Master re-builds "I Prefer Machines" modifying its original squared rhythmical paving through more defined and processed metrics, finalizing a track good for dancefloors. The German electropop / synthpop duo Klaak reconstructs the closing remix, "The Losers, applying to it more dosages of electronic effects, filtering voice and irresistible clubby tactics. The band follows a contemporary model in which they transit echoes coming from the best pop-electronic and waver rearguard, sharing with the listener the perceptible sense of dissatisfaction for all the ungratified expectations evoked in the texts; this scheme generates so expressive and tactile acoustics to allow an almost 'visual' relationship with them. Telegraph is a credible project, worthy of the respect shown by the increasing number of fans; it's an high-profile event in the most advanced synthpop culture, conceived to reach those who, thanks to their perspicacity, know how to distinguish and appreciate the true electronic sound of élite. M--A .-G--.N-.I..F..-.I..C-.-.E.N-.T- (written in Morse code) .

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Ultranoire - "Disclosure" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Vox Empirea, always looking for interesting and valuable proposals from the alternative music underground, today focuses its analysis on an emerging duo-act that deserves to be fully known and appreciated: the Ultranoire. Founded in 2011 by Josef Stapel ( vox / songwriting ) and Szilard Kun ( keyboards / musics ), the project was temporarily called Voyagers, geographically dividing its base between England and Hungary. The effective operation phase of Ultranoire occurred in 2014 with the publication of the self-produced EP entitled "Monochrome" containing five tracks, followed in 2015 by the self-produced digital-EP "Individual" consisting of four songs: to this last release they contributed two Hungarian artists: Tamas 'Silk' Sellyei, co-person in charge of mixing and Peter Lipovics, a musician from Nostromo 7, an avant-garde / electro duo with which Josef Stapel recently worked as guest vocalist on the single "Existence / Rewired & Reborn". The musical genre belonging to Ultranoire is marked by a certain authenticity and it's defined by the same authors as 'synth-noir', or an experimental combination of post-Depeche Mode / post-Camouflage / post-Kratwerk sounds, integrating perceivable dark synthpop / electropop elements, elaborated with supreme class and cultured refinement, using perpetually expressive shadowed vocals, surreal keyboard-sounds and schematic drum-machine automations. The positive opinions of the critics, together with excellent live-concerts and with the growing admiration from the audience, they favored with no particular media strategies the diffusion of Ultranoire's music, promoted especially through FM and digital radio stations, so up to the achievement of important results such as the placement of the debut-album "Disclosure" among the highest positions of the prestigious German Electronic Webcharts. Licensed in 2015 by the Russian label ScentAir, the full-length now reviewed by Vox Empirea includes eleven tracks, six of which are extracted from the two previous Extended Play: the opener is "In The Darkroom," a midtempo electropop hypnotically cadenced by drum-programming scans and by a liquid sequencer, in a set of high-tech melodies on which Josef sings a darkly saddened chant from which they transpire evident 'Dave Gahan-oriented' inflections. The magnetic charm of "Leaving Sensoria" has a strong power on the listener, thanks to synthpop / electropop euphonies full of shadow and melancholy, vocalized by Josef with reflective, introverted tones, punctuated by homogeneous midtempo drumming and by symmetrical sequencing, all decorated by evocative keyboard orchestrations. "Bad Moon Rising" is an atmospherical downtempo electropop, scientifically subdivided by basic drum-programming allocations, on which they spinning alienating keyboard euphonies and sad, meditative vocalizations. A circular sequencer processes obsessive melodies, synchronizing them with midtempo drum-programming, while emissions of turbid keyboards and vocals nostalgically darkened surround the sound: this is the 'noir-electropopish substance of "Distant Galaxy". In the next "Drowning Man" they alternate dry intermittent midtempo drum-beats and monochromatic sequencing, joined with seductive keyboard ornaments and with the placid, introspective vocals of Josef, all in a synthpop / electropop listenable in the penumbra, absorbed in your own thoughts. The electropop danceability of "Lost" (Shifting Realities 2012)" is perfectly matched with the innermost feelings, like the narration of a painful self-analysis, interpreted by linear, stimulating midtempo percussiveness, regular sequenced punctuations, harmonious keyboard constructs and by low, melancholy, vocals, pronounced with seductive intonations, the same ones that also embellish the next "Taste Me", a track formulated by relaxing synthpop / electropop sounds, dynamized by essential downtempo drum-programming, while melodious transversal keyboards propagate artificial symphonies overflowing of sophistication and futurism. "Desperation" has a synthpop imprint characterized by a vocal climax harmoniusly thoughtfully, in which we can hear notes lapped by romanticism and suffering, all punctuated by precise midtempo bpm's and enriched by capturing keyboards. "Perfect Time" reflects the existential dilemmas that afflict the spirits of the two protagonists, in a depressed synthpop atmospherically played through ashen vocal counterpoints, straight midtempo subdivisions of drum-programming and pale keyboards, whose synergy generates a song full of abandonment and intrinsic desolation. The following "Drifting (Excerpt)" is a short dark-electropop episode in which they interact exclusively leaden, minimalist symphonies of keyboards and the downtempo beats of drum-machine, as well as in the ending "Singularity" the Josef's voice spreads words and harmonies filled with nostalgia and grief, in a poignant synthpop punctuated by gaunt midtempo drum-programming and sweetened by soft keyboards, on which chords they are interposed melancholic piano ornaments. Ultranoire are the makers of a sober and extremely communicative tech-style, adorned with shady aestheticism that subjugate the listener, in a turbillon of assonances that will surprise all fans of classic synthpop / electropop. The essential paradigm of instrumentality and chant, although musically decipherable and clear, it's always marked by an oblique, indirect, tormented and ever immediately explicit melodism, a virtue that gives to the eleven songs a considerable charisma and a particular intelligibility, in addition with many 'non-ordinary' distinctive traits. This album not only is an extraordinary masterpiece of technological music art: it's also the sonic illustration of the suffering and of the anguish of a soul, heartbroken by the slow but everyday annihilation, by loneliness, by lost hopes, but also by the desire of light, of love, in an eternal alternation of desire and bitterness. Compared to many other record creations belonging to the same electronic genre, "Disclosure" can be defined with all intents as a 'non-conventional release': identifying yourself in its meanings, you can finally find and free all those indecipherable words whispered in your mind by your subconscious, the same ones that you thought they were unrealistic and you were never able to understand them. This is a revelation project! Ultranoire, ultra emotions.

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Walk With Anything - "Cemetery Romance EP" - by Maxymox 2016

immage  One-act originated in 2015 by the Swedish mastermind Johan Hellqvist. His idea to create this new electronic project was born after fifteen years of intensive training as multi-instrumentalist and music writer, but especially after the acquisition of fundamental notions experienced founding in Sweden two excellent synthpop bands: Auto Auto - with Elliot Berlin and Erik Frankel - and Cult Of Sirius - with Karin Nordblad and Ellen Lundgren - . The progressive stylistic improvements developed during the years in the technological sound - simultaneously to an innate passion regarding the gothic scene - suggested to Johan to realize through its individual design called Walk With Anything a special musicality that makes converge, unifying and expressing all them intelligibly, the most intense aspects of these two cultures. The result of this exploration is a sonic language definable as 'gothpop', electronically melodic and romantic, with depressed vocals and lyrics mainly inspired by the degradation of humanity and, more specifically, by a deep and disenchanted analysis towards the subjective physical and emotional decline. The first step of Walk With Anything's discographical process was constituted by the inclusion of the song "Gothic Princess" into the prestigious digital-compilation "Swedish Electro Scene Vol. 3" published online in 2015, followed in 2016 by this four-tracks debut-EP entitled "Cemetery Romance", licensed by the Swedish label Electric Fantastic Sound. And it is precisely "Gothic Princess" the opener of this release, a combination among electropop and obscure elements, highlighted in the tones melancholically gloomy of vocals - taken from the diaries written by the Johan's friend Myh Thorsén - and contextualized into danceable uptempo formulas of drum-programming, fascinating piano touches, intermittent sequencing and hot keyboard spreads. The next "Five Feet Underground" integrates a pulsing, automatic midtempo percussiveness, around which they extend electropopish harmonious sounds and gothic shadows, percettibile more than ever in the elegant Johan's chant, all structured through a dynamic set of guitar-bass lines, precise sequenced trajectories, symmetrical cadences of drum machine and capturing synth's orchestrations. The evident gothic imprint, so clear in the low and suggestive Johan's intonations, is emphasized also in the following "In The Night", a song that has an electronic-dark mood composed by regular uptempo partitions of drum-programming, by rational sequenced distributions, catchy keyboard melodies and by refined piano notes that seem reverberating from a parallel dimension. The electro-minimalism that distinguishes the closing "Run And Hide" reminds us vaguely the more darkest and tormented Depeche Mode, in a track played through an introductory and distorted electric guitar riff, which obsessive constructs are replicate without pause during the entire lenght of the song, constituting, together with essential downtempo drum-programming scans, the rhythmical framework, in addition to a sour, saddened voice, hatched sequencing and with nostalgic piano counterpoints. Flattering Extended Play, realized with a dual propensity, both towards the sound technologism and towards a concept of darkness never openly flaunted, but only intuibile within the musics, in a set of electronic pop and desolate gothic harmonies, in which the listener will be abducted by the main element that constitutes the true epicenter of all four songs: the Johan's charismatic voice. His perpetual emancipations in the search of the right balance will lead in the near future Walk With Anything at the discovering of increasingly defined musics, full of eloquence, already so alive and atmospheric in this compelling introduction "Romance Cemetery". We're inexorably attracted and subjugated by the invincibile recall of decadence.

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"Wrorngpad Compilation" - cd - by Maxymox 2016

immage  Wrongpad is a young Athenian emerging collective-label founded in 2015, specialized in the genres ambient / IDM / electronica / downtempo / drum'n'bass / dubstep / breakcore, whose intent is principally to make known worldwide the most promising Greek musicians from the technological underground scene. The first step of this initiative is the present "Wrongpad Compilation" now reviewed by Vox Empirea, a release specially conceived by the Hellenic brand in the same 2015 for giving highlight to nine significant protagonists, each of them oriented towards his personal combination of electronic styles. Mastered by the sound-designer / sound-engineer Sotiris Laskaris at the in Athens Layer Based Human Activities studios, this anthology demonstrates exhaustively the great competence and the inspiration of modern alchemists, who, with the only exception represented by the duo named Talos, they consist of solo-projects, as Memphidos - aka Dimitrios Sakkas - interpreter of the opening track "Lost Bone", an ambient / psy-chill composition played through expansions of dark pads and through orchestrations of melancholic sampled strings, all slowly cadenced by obscure drumming resonances. The next "City Landscape Monotony", a track belonging to Tape86 - aka Stavros Kostidakis - is a refined abstract-ambient / IDM creation, built by three suggestive, long, shady keyboard / piano chords, punctuated by downtempo drum-programming replications, among which they gradually inserting additional cycles of percussive 'breakbeat' sequences. MikTek is instead the author of the following "Faller", an elegant song played on minimal ambient / IDM sonorities full of moving nostalgia, sweetly exalted by the suave notes of piano and pads that raise slight, floating above asymmetrical downtempo drumming. Poordream - aka John Valasis - proposes his "Aphorism (feat. Charlie Chaplin)", assembling experimental-electronics / IDM / acoustic / cinematic-ambient elements, in which the downtempo drum-programming rhythms atmospheric euphonies scented of ethnicity, all by surreal chorus, reverberating strings arpeggios, mesmerizing pads and filmic vocal loops. The eclectic and mysterious duo-act Talos offers with "Bland" their vision of the ambient / IDM / electronics concepts, combining essential synthetic melodies, sequenced hatchings, fascinating pads and android emissions, on a sophisticated percussive midtempo line. "Neither Nest Or Hive" a track by Conjecture - aka Vasilis Angelopoulos - is inclined towards post-industrial / IDM architectures in which you distinguish simultaneously harmonies from classicism and futurism, built at first by incorporeal dark-ambient pads and then by gloomy piano-synth counterpoints plus deep keyboard chords, all subdivided by automatic downtempo drum-programming. We continue with the next "Atmos" by Xsoz - aka J. Raptis - whose mechanical industrial / IDM / ambient trajectories integrate murky keyboard dissonances energized by powerful drum-programming rotations, for a track characterized by solemnity and by avant-gardism. "Elephsys", designed by Aevin - aka Teo Tsalmpouris - is an elaborate electronic / post-industrial song, made of echoed-artificial noises rhythmically placed on regular midtempo drum-machine bpm's and of melodic synth fluorescences. The final episode of the release is entitled "1000 Miles" played by Infekkted - aka Stathis Grapsas - in which they impeccably interact electronic experimentalism, ethnic curvatures and neoclassical refractions: the results is an apollonian, polyhedric succession of feminine vocalizations and convulse, psychotic piano-keyboard symphonie, rhythmed alternately by rolling acoustic snares and by intricate industrial-IDM drumming configurations. Technologism, rationality, emotions and creativity characterize the nine participants in this interesting compilation, which is a tangible demonstration of how concretely prepared and musically evolved are the Greek new-explorers of electronic sound. All projects of the tracklist are the makers of wonderful melodies of laptop and keyboards, of complex percussive diagrams and of uninterrupted mental solicitations: they reserve the listener a sophisticated image in high-resolution of that big sonic progress from which they continue branching innovative styles and always more advanced musicians. Thanks to the initiative of a label such as Wrongpad we are now in direct contact with artists endowed with original and often authentic creativity, here expressed in all its perfection. The disciples of the hyper-alternative electronic they will evaluate very positively this superb masterwork, hoping that it will not be a single, unrepeatable chapter, but the beginning of a long series of publications that may equal its prestige. In the meantime, consider you this excellent compilation as a preview of the next wonders to come.

Reviews 2016 Eng
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