torsdag den 8. juni 2023

Lyke Wake - I Live In Fear, I Burn In Hate / Symphonic Noise

The latest release from the master of Symphonic Noise. This must be the third in the chapter on Symphonic Noise, suddenly I realized that the last 3 releases by Lyke Wake have had the Symphonic Noise tag in the album title. And this one is the third one in the chapter. I am not 100% sure how limited this release is, other than it has been released through Lyke Wake´s label Aseptic Noise. The label doesn´t have a website, but Lyke Wake has a website. And at the end of the website (with all the available releases), it tells for CD or free MP3 files mail to: Simple as that! 

With this new release, Lyke Wake continues the artwork style in the same manner as like former album At The End Of The Dream. Kind of surreal and naive at the same time, you see the 4 seasons in one picture with the same tree on it. You know... autumn, spring, summer, and winter. How that is connected with the title I Live In Fear, I Burn In Hat... well... But apart from that, I love the artwork. It works fantastic looking at it while listening to the recorded material within. 

The first (and only) track I Live In Fear, I Burn In Hate starts with the sound of atmospheric synth-driven violins. It gets interrupted by that cool sort of... early John Carpenter/Terminator 1 synth. An angelic female vocal heightens the cold and apocalyptic atmosphere. Everything so far has been mixed nicely, as nothing of the recorded elements drowns the other sounds/elements. We return once more to the synth-driven violins, and at this point, the listener would understand that this highly adventurous release has a sort of... story-telling evolvement in how the album progresses from the start to the end. 

Im just writing things while this album goes on my stereo. For those who haven´t read my former Lyke Wake reviews, then I can describe it as... sort of a thing between the orchestral Controlled Bleeding, early Coil, and then some Klaus Schulze as well. Kind of majestic and eerie at the same time! Highly ambitious since Lyke Wake knows what he is doing. Lyke Wake is an excellent keyboard player and knows a thing or two about doing symphonic melodies while maintaining that experimental industrial /noise-ambient edge. Pure stuff for escapism. Every album by Lyke Wake has a tiny world inside for the listener to explore. The fans of dungeon synth would also truly dig Lyke Wake. Further curious, do remember to read the interview I did with him (link further below).

Almost halfway through now. So far I have been through elements of cosmic noise and angelic encounters. Lyke Wake has an interesting way to create these long tracks. He goes back to melodies that we have heard further back on the album, but the great thing is that it isn't just a copy-paste thing, it does sound like a long impro session. It kind of works (sort of) in the same manner as... the stuff I was listening to today, John Coltrane. A kind of cut-up sort of work, with repetitions. 

Again, Lyke Wake is just great. Overwhelming, this guy could do music for an opera! I just had to have a pause from reviewing, my chickens were gone (found again). But that is exactly how this album is, filled with panic attacks and relief. Kind of a curse with this act, a favorite of the reviewer. Ace project, ace albums... what more can I say!  

fredag den 2. juni 2023

 Toni Dimitrov & Boban Ristevski - 

Technological Slavery

The side-label of E.C.T. called S.E.C.T. has released this interesting 3" CD in a mini-jewel, limited of course. Featuring two veterans in the field of experimental electronics, drones, and ambient music. Toni Dimitrov is a DJ, producer, co-founder of Acid Fake Recordings, and a highly productive recording artist. And Boban Ristevski/Lefterna (and Playing For Oblivion) who we reviewed on that great split from Attenuation Circuit (read former review). I did some research regarding the title, it I found out that it´s based on the manifesto/book written by the Unabomber Ted Kaczynski. He did literary fight a war against technological development, kind of interesting to look at the time we live in right now. That kind of makes this release HIGHLY serious. 

It´s a small 16 minutes thing covering a huge concept/theme. Spread over 2 tracks, being 8 minutes each. The simple artwork has also been based on the artwork for Kaczynski´s book as well. 

The first part starts with a heavy-industrial low-fi rumble, with some hidden, manipulated, and looped human voices in the mix. Creepy-ass microscopic sounds click in and out from some hidden vortex. Sort of insectoid sounds, grasshoppers sort of. There is also the clattering noise from some sort of short-rave radio, giving the piece a kind of post-apocalyptic sort of feel to it. This track has some kind of disturbing and coldness to it which I cannot put my finger on, which sort of heightens the listening experience. Fans of early NON, MB, Nocturnal Emissions, and Zoviet France will dig this!

The second part starts in the same low-fi manner, just more with a minimalistic ambient approach. Some kind of looped music in there, radio chatter, and a very cool-sounding sort of... windy sound. Like wind traveling through a huge steel pipe sort of. To me, it sounds like the world/human life has just ended, and the only noise/sound being present is abandoned technology. The disturbing coldness is still going strong in this track as well. 

A strong and highly focused conceptual album. It delivers what it plans to deliver to the listener, a message without any words. But a message which can be understood, through concentrated listening. It´s bloody marvelous, sure to send shivers down every spine! Even good old Ted would be proud! Industrial-drone music at its absolute best! Be quick to get the physical release via E.C.T. (links below)!

Discogs (label):

Facebook (label):

torsdag den 1. juni 2023

Circuit Corrupter - Destructive Maelstrom 

A new act from Spain is to be reviewed on Kalteldur, Circuit Corrupter. The album is called Destructive Maelstrom and is the debut of this act. The album has been released through a label called Abhorrent A.D. The limited cassette has already sold out on the label´s Bandcamp site, but there are still some copies left through the act´s own Bandcamp site, so be quick! 

The brainchild behind this act is also responsible for another act called Dead Eye Terrorist (released on Marbre Negre), an act which I also will review later this year. The recorded material has been spread on the two sides of the cassette, one long track on the A-side and a couple of short tracks on the B-side. About 22 minutes in total length. Should I mention the artwork for the release?. Well. let us just say that it is a nasty piece of work! Buy and check it out!

The First track on the A-side is called Sow Despair. Starts with a crumpling HNW low-fi rumble, like something on the frying pan. A sample/recording of unknown origins could be from some S/M flick or something similar. All of this gets interrupted by a psychedelic cut-up noise, which then gets interrupted by additional distorted squeaks of harsh brain-tingling sounds. Cool retro/analog spacy sounds and screaming vocals have also been added to the cut-up noise-scape. Lots of action lots of everything going on in here! At times it sounds like a huge computer getting its circuits burned out, completely like an information overload unit. The sound quality is excellent, although it is quite noisy and quite chaotic you can still hear everything which is going on. All the sounds haven´t been mixed together into mashed potato, but all the stuff going on has lots of space between them. Excellent piece of noise here.

We turn to the B-side to the second track of the album which is called Torture the Luminous Spirits. The recording/sample here is definitely from some S/M flick of some sort, or could also be some from a torture horror flick as well. The relentless action-driven knop-twiddling continues completely without remorse! The pumped noise drills your senses in the same way a drunken dentist ruins your teeth.

The third track is called Don´t Show Remose... Doesn't show any remorse either. Lots of Fxxxxx-up spacy sounds here, fading in and out of focus while a huge amount of voltage runs through your body.

The fourth track Traumatize Innocence is an even more dynamic track. Lots of cuts and chopped-out moments. Always enjoyed it when sounds and stuff travel and jump through my stereo speakers.

The rest of the album continues the relentless assault on the senses, without a single pause or moment for anyone to catch their breath. Not a single boring moment on Destructive Maelstrom, and the album title is also a perfect way to actually describe this demon-possessed album. Certainly an album for the fans of harsh noise, which find themselves being pretty bored by well... noise. Action-sound here!

mandag den 29. maj 2023

 Paranoia Inducta - Demon´s Factory

A true veteran in neo-classical-inspired dark ambient music, Paranoia Inducta is a Polish act that started back in 2003. Since then, the act has released numerous releases on known labels such as Beast Of Prey, Rage In Eden, and on Heerwegen Tod Production. Demon´s Factory is the latest album, and it has come out as a jewel case and as a limited (and beautiful) A5 digipack. A 9-track full-length is about 60 minutes in total length. 

It is a conceptual album, which has its focuses on the time in which we live. Bit of everything really. War there, pandemic there, artificial intelligence, globalization, and (most importantly) the widespread exploitation of the individual itself. The artwork shows a sort of feminine character, all wrapped up in something. It does look like some sort of metal thing on the head, covering the mouth as well. I guess the artwork shows how wrapped up we all are, in information and bureaucracy maybe? Happiness through slavery right? The album title, Demon´s Factory? Maybe all of these horrible things happening in our time are all being produced by some infernal machinery. The question is, by demons or humans... or both?. Let us find out by clicking play on my compact-disc player!

The first track is (of course) called New World Order. Melancholic and manipulated tones (or voices) start the track, simmering ritualistic bells and lovely atmospheric background drones. Then comes the cool synth. Think John Carpenter or that classic Terminator theme song! Decent Lisa Gerrard kind of vocal work here also. A nice mixture between epic dark ambient and slick retro-wave. A simple, effective, and beautiful start for the album. 

The second track Demon´s Factory continues where the first track ended (obviously). Murky sound effects and atmospheric ambiance, and some nice ritualistic and religious chanting going on, Kind of makes me think back to that classic CMI act called Ildfrost. And then the ambient/ritual stops and some simple martial rhythms mark its presence. Epic kind of post-industrial Mad Max as a gothic opera sort. Love the sound production, and I dig the slick futuristic synth work. I personally think that the epic and melodic elements were (a bit) over the top, but it's a matter of taste... the sound and the melody (luckily) sound good!

The third track Lords Of Illusions starts with a menacing sound and then drops into a pure minimalistic soundtrack ambient. And then it comes. A trumpet melody, which does sound a bit like Gustav Holst Mars theme... but who cares?! I love that bloody theme. There is so much doom in that theme, even enough to make Darth Vader wet his black panties! Again I'm being sort of nostalgic here, thinking back to classic computer game soundtracks of the 90s (for some reason). A nicely done apocalyptic track, I really love the slick production and the efficient simplicity here.

The fourth track Heaven Inc offers marching drums, evil-sounding synth-undercurrents, and some Christian-based recordings taken from some big American church. It all has a kind of Jim Jones sort of vibe. Epic organ-synth work here also.   

The fifth track See You In Hell, has a lovely mysterious vibe in the beginning. Some extra-added, beautiful dramatic but subtle vocals were done by Erszebeth (Stupor Mentis) here. Interesting how a melody, dark ambient, and vocals can work together, rare that I hear that.

I am then going to jump further to the last ninth track called Dying Light. A cold and evocative ambient piece. Might just be my favorite track on the album. It actually does sound like... a dying light. The flickering light from a candle stick? As if the light is trying to survive, the ever-engulfing darkness surrounding it maybe? I do like how the sound of strings has been manipulated, and again the addition of that slick retro synth puts a smile on my old face. A good way to end the album, as good as how the album started with New World Order. 

And that is all I have to say about that! Demon´s Factiry is filled with ambition and a concept. And it does (mostly) sound really good. I do like how various styles are met, and trying to find out if it would actually work. And it does actually work, adding some melodies, vocals, and nostalgic synth work. But I do miss two things though, the absence of something sounding... well nasty and downright scary! If it´s all hell and death for us all, then of course I would have expected something...well nasty and scary! And then I miss some... edge or some sort of risk like it has that sort of... dangerous feel or sound to it. Demon´s Factory need to be messier, evil, and chaotic! It might just be a taste thing, try to give it a listen.


torsdag den 25. maj 2023

 Barrera - No Input Can Save Me From My Demons

Yes! A new Barrera tape from David López Saludes! This time on an interesting Swedish label called Mima Kass, an anti-music cassette label since 2019. Few copies left on the label, so you better be quick! A simple setup of tracks. One track on each side, each track being about 30 minutes long. All in the glory of pure HNW! Before I continue with the review, let me introduce you to a piece of philosophical text found within the inner sleeve:

"Does God want goodness or the choice of goodness? Is a man who chooses to be bad perhaps in some way better than a man who has the good imposed upon him?!

A text which raises certain questions, in the same manner as reading and understanding the stories of the Brothers Grimm or fables by Fontaine. Moral issues and questions regarding the actions of human beings. The question answers the question, in a way. Is it the bad man who imposes goodness upon others to control them? Might just be, does raise some questions when it comes to organized religion for mass consumption! This point of view also links nicely up with the artwork from the movie A Clockwork Orange, where man has invented a method to use technology to impose goodness upon certain criminals, in other words... to control them.

But anyways, the first track is also simply called No Input Can Save Me From My Demons... Side A. The cassette starts like the engine of a drag racer car. The sensation of bursting flames and smelly hot fumes and melted plastic. And again, as it is often with the case of Barrera... I can hear and sense a heavy dark-ambient texture roaming in the background. Which really is something that works great with HNW! With a long track like this, you (as the listener) really have to be patient. In the same matter as speaking and talking to an Ent, a single word/expression takes ... well. 30 minutes. But it's good anyways, the ambient texture in the background makes the noise vibrant, dynamic, and adventurous. I am not even halfway through the first track just yet! Later on, it does sound as if the dark-ambient textures have turned into eternal-looped moans coming from the mouths of dying angels. Yes, it does actually sound as if heaven has caught itself on fire! The sound of something which sounds like a short-wave radio also being present here. 

Ok, I'm tuning into the B-Side of the tape. I do have that strange sensation that I have been here before. Like getting lost inside a HUGE maze, and you end up being back to where you started. And as I was writing this, suddenly something new was revealed to me. The sound of this album is so dense, that u can alter the sound of it if you turn your head/ears. If I turn my head up, I can easily hear the heavy sounds. And if I turn it down, then the high sounds can be easily heard. Virtual reality and HNW in one page, who would have thought of that! Basically, I think that both tracks 1 & 2 should be seen as 1  track... instead of two.  

Well, my ears are red and I can feel a throbbing sensation inside my skull. Good thing I have a beer beside me. This one with Barrera is probably the most challenging of all his releases. Not because of its length, but more because of the expression itself being completely spaghettified like being sucked into a black hole! Might just be the last Barrera release/album? It's a hell of a beast, non-dynamic yes but filled with constant violent tension. So yes, if this doesn´t save you from your own demons... nothing will!

Bandcamp (label):


lørdag den 20. maj 2023


Егзорцизам – Нељудски Ентитети

The next thing in line from E.C.T. to get reviewed is an act from Serbia. The act is called, which means exorcism, and the album is called Нељудски Ентитети which then means non-human entities. The act is a very Christian-Orthodox-inspired thing, which will probably explain the exorcism idea. And this is also what the cover artwork is showing, some religious Jesus-like guy (the one on the left) lifting his magic finger towards a devil-possessed guy, who is being restrained by another guy. Notice the small demon escaping the mouth of the restrained. Inside the booklet, there are also lots of other cool archaic imagery with strong religious undertones. The album is limited to 50 copies, and it comes with an 8-page booklet and a nifty-looking mini poster as well. A 4 track album, almost 50 minutes in total length. The last fourth track is a bonus track (by the way). 

The first track Параноичне Фреске (Paranoid Frescoes) enters a highly atmospheric ambient space. Filled with esoteric moods, dungeon-synth melodies, and forgotten rituals from times sadly forgotten by age. Lovely organic sounds and lots of effects motivate the listener to explore the highly mysterious soundscape within. Not your typical dark-ambient stuff here though, very primal and very heavy as well. It does remind me of Endvra when they are doing those long ritual-ambient tracks. A nice mixture of esoteric soundscapes with some additional evocative synth melodies in the background. 

The second track Безбожан Кивот (Godless Kivot) is harsher than the former track. Heavily distorted bass sounds upfront in your speakers, with a creepy soundtrack behind that. This track is slightly closer (in sound) to another release that I reviewed from E.C.T. From an act which is another project from this artist, a project called Depression Embrace. Heavy industrial-ambient drone with ritualistic aesthetics, the same manner/style as Valefor´s Death Magick album from 1996 and Melak-Tha. Rare that I am hearing anyone doing anything which has something in common with that Valefor release! 

The third track Окултни опсесивни ентитети (Occult obsessive entities) starts as a very slow and quiet track. Slithering and murky sounds from some hellish underground, with an eldritch presence of something banging on some ritualistic bells. There are some interesting human voices to be located in this subtle inferno of sound as well. with some excellent and cold drones levitating above the listener. It´s a very chilled and "relaxing" track, but also a very brutal and incredibly dark one as well.

The fourth and last track Узалудне молитве (Vain Prayers) offers the sound of a windy desert and some chirping insects. A very heavy storm is brewing, almost as heavy and eerie as the winds over the lost and forgotten city of the Old Ones. Some excellent background synth-work is added, with some icy sounds of cold drops of water from some huge and deep limestone cavern. Again, interesting and strange samples of human voices in the background raise the curiosity of the listener. Love how the artist manages to add some kind of sinister feel to the track, for some strange reason I keep on checking if I (really) am all alone in my room?!  

An excellent non-typical occult-inspired dark-ambient album from Serbia. There is a nostalgic hint or two from the days when black metal artists did dark/industrial-ambient, and there is also a hint of an artist who is trying to pursue a unique sound. I do think that he is successful in reaching that goal with this album, I do find it incredibly refreshing! I love it when religious themes/concepts enter the world of murky ambient soundtracks, it is a rare occasion when it truly works... but it does here!     

tirsdag den 16. maj 2023

 Carlos Suero / Illman & Gyakusatsu - Lunacy

I remember the excellent Hansenbyó by Carlos Suero & Yama-Biko from 2018, I also remember the sheer brutality of the countless releases by Spanish power-electronics acta Gyakusatsu. Not sure who Illman is, maybe it's one of Carlos´s nicknames? Anyways, these two cult acts have teamed up on a limited cassette album, released by Marbre Negre. Carlos Suero on the A-side, and Gyakusatsu on the B-side. The title of this split album has been named Lunacy, and the artwork itself shows a murky forest in greyscale but... I think that there is an extra layer in the picture. I can see something transparent in there, but I cannot recognize what it is. There is something of a shape there alright, maybee it is meant to illustrate lunacy somehow? The kind of phantasmagoric images that the crazed and tortured mind can create? Anyways, let us check up on what kind of lunacy these two fellows have cooked up for us. 

The first track with Carlos Suero / Illman is called Brains. A doomy-heavy synth starts the track, with a sharp and punctuating drum machine to add it up. Extra layers of windy synth drones give the mood a scary touch, then come the vocals. Excellent sounding vocals, not a trace of distortion or heavy effects either... the natural sound of mentally menacing vocals! There is a mild reverb effect on the vocals, but that is just it... sounds like a has been recorded in a very small claustrophobic room. Classic industrial sound, makes me think of classic stuff like Blackhouse. 

The second track is simply called Do. Again, excellent drum-machine rhythms and a haunting atmosphere. Vocal parts doing their part, more of a Skinny Puppy vocal without the effects (now that I think of it). Love the frustration in the vocal expression here, the idea of Lunacy can really be felt here! No light at the end of the tunnel here, really dark stuff!

The third and last track with Carlos Suero / Illman is called Fell. From the beginning, the listener can hear the presence of a sucking void. The drums have a slight martial feel here, while the vocals add the last desperate mood to the A-side. Lovely kind of asylum feel to the Carlos Suero tracks, very claustrophobic and very intense. 

We flip the cassette and continue with the B-side with Gyakusatsu. It doesn´t start like the former tracks, it does start all right... with a narrowing screaming microphone sound. Or is it the sound of a loose cord somewhere, either way... the listener wakes up on another sound level. Multi-layered industrial harsh noise. Lots of distortion, lots of screaming, and lots of feedback, and samples. The track is called After Dark...Lunacy. Power-electronics for the fans of HNW I think. 

Love the idea of having a split with 2 acts sounding VERY different from each other. As a listener you have two different acts, having their interpretation of lunacy. Whereas Carlos Suero works more on mood before action, Gyakusatsu has more of an action-before-mood approach. In other words, a truly schizophrenic sound experience!