dark ambient

En Velours Noir * Else (mcd 2000 beyond…prod)

I don’t know why this name sounds so familiar. I didn’t have anything of this Italian band, the label is a metallabel of which I only know the names of a handfull of bands. What En Velours Noir do on a metallabel is a good question, but I suppose the bandmembers also play in metalbands or so. “Else” doesn’t contain anything like metal though. It’s more like minimal modern classical with some gothic and dark ambient touches and magnificent tenor vocals. The music is quite simple and not always truly enjoyable, but these vocals make up everything. The only band that I can think off with some resemblances is the German Artwork. I like this quite a bit and I wonder what the future bring for this band.

Endura * Great Pan Is Dead (7” 2003 :alu:)

A 7” with the artwork of the “never released cd” and two tracks. One is another version for a track that is already on “Great God Pan” and the other is more ambient. A nice 7”, strange design. At least not in the line of the more ambient direction that Endura was heading on the last releases.

Endura * Elder Signs (2cd 1999 red stream)

A double cd for those who haven’t been able to keep of with the flood of releases of this English industrial band. Disc one contains the magistral debut “Dreams Of Dark Waters” that has been deleted for two times already. Disc two contains the second album “The Dark Light Is Enough”. Then both discs are filled with 4 extra tracks. This might appeal to the real Endura fans, but I’m afraid they will not (like me) find much new. The tracks also appear on the “Biomechenical Soul Journey” 10″ of last year; the 1996 tape “Ard Inn Arr” (which already contains songs from old compilations) and two contributions to more recent compilations; the very last track is one I didn’t know yet, but it’s a boring piece of atmospheric music.
Like I said, this cd is for those who can’t keep up with other releases of Endura. I will not give a rating to this cd, because however I really like the first two albums, I’m still displeased with this 2cd.

Deutsch Nepal * A Silent Siege (cd 2002 old europa café a.v.s.)

This band of course needs no introduction. Personally I think that DN made a brilliant start on CMI almost 10 years ago, but Lina’s cds didn’t get better. Some are even downright boring. After the nice Janitor lp (I am yet waiting for the cd) and hearing that the new DN contains Lina’s singing I decided to give him another go. Indeed “A Silent Siege” contains singing in almost every track. Also there is more oldstyle industrial, but also the typical DN sound. Most tracks are good to wonderfull making this new cd one of Lina’s best efforts of late. <3>

Deutsch Nepal * Erosion (cd 1999 staalplaat)

I was pleased to hear that there was finally a new cd of Deutsch Nepal. A bit strange that is wasn’t ‘just’ released by Cold Meat Industry though. Anyhow, Staalplaat released more cds of CMI-bands so this is not entirely strange.
Well, the first track isn’t too good. The second track is a brillant piece Lina Baby Doll’s dark industrial/ambient. After that it’s more like ‘old-fashioned’ industrial. Some tracks are extremely boring, others are pretty good. Makes this cd under-average, but not so bad that I must tell you not to buy it. Only thing I can say is: don’t have too high expectations of Lina’s latest attempt.

Desiderii Marginis * Dead Beat (cd 2001 cold meat industry)

Desiderii’s first album “Songs Over Ruins” (cold meat 1997) was a classic Cold Meat release, both regarding music (dark ambient) and lay-out. Four years later the second Desiderii cd again reminds of Cold Meat of days past, but this time the music isn’t too typical and has some nice touches to it. There is more industrial, a bit of noise and atmospheric influences, making “Dead Beat” an enjoyable album to listen to. The length is a bit short (50 minutes) and the last track isn’t too good, but overall I think this is a pretty descent cd.

Dernière Volonté * Le Feu Sacré (cd 2000 hau ruck!)

After a double cassette and a 7” the French Dernière Volonté present their first full-length “The Sacred Fire”. This is the first release that I have of this band, so I can’t tell you anything about the previous releases.
The cd opens with a wonderfull “Ouverture” (a perfect title) and the next song is a very tranquil industrial track. Actually the whole cd is very tranquil and rather orchestral. Still there is a lot of rhythm which can be either (march) drumming or beats, but overall this reminds me a bit of Cold Meat Industry music, especially because there is also some dark ambient with choral samples.
If you like (dark) ambient and rhythmic tranquil industrial like some CMI cds or Apoptose and Tribe of Circle, you don’t have to doubt about getting your hands on this one.

Der Blutharsch * first album (lp 1997 art / cd 2001 wkn/tesco)

Waiting for the new album herr Julius decided to rerelease his debut lp of 1997 that was still released on the ‘label’ Arthur’s Round Table back then. I am one of the 250 lucky people who got a copy of this nice-looking picture lp. It had a very minimal lay-out and the cd is kept mostly the same. The front and back of the picture lp are in the inside of the digipack and behind the cd.
To the music then. Don’t forget that this are Albin’s very first experiments with Der Blutharsch and in the beginning it didn’t quite sound like it does now. The debut is more ambient, rather industrial and only at a few moments you can hear the bombast that would characterise Der Blutharsch’ later sound. One track you may know from the live album “The Long Way Home”.
Anyway, the debut isn’t too good except for a few nice tracks and especially in comparison to the The Moon Lay Hidden album of the same year (“The Smell Of Blood But Victory”) it was completely overshadowed.
I suggest that you buy this cd to complete your Der Blutharsch collection or if you are interested in Albin’s early solo actions, but not if you expect another “The Pleasures Received In Pain”. Just think of the “Der Sieg Des Lichtes” ambient tracks and you will have quite a good idea.

Deadwood * 8 19 (cd 2005 cold spring)

Cold Spring noise. When I put on “8 19” (unfortunately I haven’t been able to find out what the title refers to, 19 august of some year?) and heard the uncompromising and unstructured extreme noise opening track, I feared that this would be a cd with a kind of noise that I can’t stand. But after 11 minutes we go to track two and things get a lot better, very dark ambient, a little monotous, but nice. Almost 15 minutes later we go on to a better kind of noise, low frequencies, an industrial background, but still pretty damn loud. This goes on for 11 minutes after which a track opens with dark ambient, but going over in very dark noise, a really great track. The last two tracks are shorter, 10 minutes and 4 minutes. The fifth track has some kind of rhythm, but very slow and the last track is more like a dark industrial ambient piece. Accept for the first one, I really like “8 19”. All track have the highly distorted vocals, but that is okay when the music is distorted too. It seems that nowadays noise tends to have the nice, dark sound that I enjoy and not as much making ‘noise for the sake of noise’. Deadwood is also a good example of a noise act that doesn’t stick to one kind of noise, bringing variety and innovation to the genre. That is nice, because I find myself enjoying noise more often than a couple of years ago!