dark industrial

v/a * Flowers Made Of Snow (2cd 2004 cold meat industry)

Traditionally every 10th CMI release is a compilation and they are always eagerly expected. Even though it was a long wait since the last compilation while the ‘normal’ releases come like a flood, “Flowers Made Of Snow” lives up to the tradition. It features old and new bands, has mostly exclusive tracks, looks wonderfull and has a high level of musical quality. Apparently CMI wants to push its boundaries of the typical CMI concept. There are bands who are not even from Scandinavia, let alone Sweden and there is more folky music again. Here you get a good overview of the old and new CMI. Bands such as Ordo, ISN, BDN are present, but also new names such as Olen’K, All My Faith Lost…, The Last Hour, Apatheia, Hesperos and Sibellian. Definately a must-buy for old and new listeners!

various terrorists * Don’t Hunt What You Can’t Kill (3cd 2002 l.white records)

Sweet mother of God! This is a total noise-overkill! For the price of one cd you get three cds with the most extreme noise and power electronics. Three times 70+ minutes, 40 bands in total. Definately a bit too much, but for this price… Most bands I didn’t know and strangely enough the bands that I did and liked contributed the least interesting tracks. You get a very good overview of electronic terrorism. From dark industrial/ambient to powerelectronics. I like many of the tracks, but I still can’t stand the highpitched chaotic noise tracks. Still, a good investment this cd, but be quick, it is limited to 500 copies.

v/a * Collapse (mcd 2000 state art / ars macabre)

On 18 and 19 august 2000 State Art and Ars Macabre organised the first Collapse festival with a whole bunch of dark industrial and noise acts. A special gift to the visitors was a cd with exclusive material of the bands that played. because of the gigantic request for the cd of people who haven’t been to the festival, the cd is also made available for the rest of the world.
7 Bands with one track each making a cd of 35 minutes in a cd-single box makes a compilation-mcd. The opening act is Ultra United with a very tranquil ambient track. Next up is MZ.412 vs Folkstorm which is of course noise, but rhythmical and quite industrial. The next track is of Heid a dark ambient track. Predominance is an act that I knew as a dark industrial band, but their “God Of Wolves” is total noise. Nocturne just released an lp on State Art and if that one is in the same style as their “6.VI.1994” this cd contains very tranquil ambient, soundscapes even. Ex.Order made a noise track old style, which screetching sounds and screamed vocals. The last track is to me by far the best. It is of Axon Neuron/Vagwa and it is a very strange and dark industrial track with strange deformed orchestrations.
Actually I had hope for a better cd. The only track that I really like is the last one. Most other tracks are alright and one is truely none of my taste. Still, if you want some introduction into dark electronics, I guess this is a cheap option.

v/a * Chamber (cd 2002 cold spring records)

This “Cold Spring Records sampler” is a 80 minute cd with Ignis Fatuus (alright neoclassical), Folkstorm (good industrial/ambient), Mark Snow (nice neoclassical), Laibach (strange old industrial), Endura (too monotous ambient), Novatron (too monotous ambient), Band of Pain (again too monotous ambient), Benedikt Prayer (a piano track), Schloss Tegal (good dark industrial), Von Thronstahl (a version of “Mitternachtsberg” that I already had), Toroidh (industrial), Sleep Research Facility (industrial), The Days Of The Trumpet Call (a nice track that sounds a bit too much like Von Thronstahl), Kerovnian (nice, but a bit too monotous ambient) and the best for last: A Challenge Of Honour (nice orchestral version of “Havamal”). All in all a nice compilation with a few acts that I didn’t know yet.

v/a * Book Ov Shadowz (compilation lp spectre)

An industrial compilation that may not surprise the die-hard industrial freaks, but makes a very good point to all searching. The bands here are mostly established names: Dagda Mor (indus/ambient), Stratum Terror (power electronics), Söldnergeist (see cd), Ah Cama-Sotz (see cd), Megaptera (dark ambient), Predominance (see lp), Inade (dark ambient) and the only band that I didn’t know: Tortura (heavy industrial). Most tracks are pretty good, especially the one of Stratum Terror (which is the dark side of Raison D’Être by the way). It brings a nice overview of the dark industrial scene of nowadays too.

v/a * A Reassuring Voice On The Television (cd 2006 hermetique)

For a long noise wasn’t my kind of music. Chaotic highpitched noise, I still can’t listen to most of it. I don’t know if it has to do with the years, or with the fact that the genre became better, but there are quite some noise and power electronics projects that I do like nowadays and reviews in this genre can be found on Monas.nl more often. It is only now and then that I run into something that I really like. One of such projects was Propergol from the sunny France that I got to know when Tesco released his “Renegade” album. Propergol has released more material on Nuit et Brouillard, Malignant, etc. and appears on many compilations of which I bought some hoping that there is more of this kind of noise. Jérôme Nougaillon founded his own label of which I ran into the website a few times. Hermetique found other projects more or less in the same vein and these projects can be found on this great and cheap compilation which comes in a wonderfull thin DVD case. The title probably refers to David Cronenberg’s “Videodrome” film which seems to be one of Nougaillon’s favorite films (the Propergol track is called “Emotional Rescue Show”, samples from “Videodrome” can be found on his cds). “A Reassuring Voice…” opens with a very dark low-frequency track from Post Scriptvm from the USA of which another cd that was released by Somanbulant Corpse is reviewed elsewhere. Next up is a new-signed project called nEGAPADRES.3.3. with a weird noise track. Dusk of Hope has two tracks to come to their 10 minutes, this time very much noise, like Ex.Order. The first track is great, the second is alright. Sea-Green Series is another project of Nougaillon.This track is a great dark and noisy soundscape, leading up to more extreme sounds. Immediately recognisable is Propergol. This projects comes out best on a 70 minute cd, but “Emotional Rescue Show” is dark and threatening like we got used to of this project. With Radiodrama things get more noisy again, industrial even. Clear sounds, samples, a heavy rhythm and then noise; a really great track. The last track is for Old-Iron Fence. This track is much like a more tranquil Propergol track. This is the one minor thing about “A Reassuring Voice…”. Like other projects seem to be inspired by Propergol, the projects on this compilation are exceptionally heavily influenced by Nougaillon. Old-Iron Fence can easily be mistaken for Propergol, Radiodrama has similar samples with similar effects, like some of the other projects. This is okay if people find inspiration and original paths for themselves in the future, but I hope we won’t suddenly get a booming ‘Hermetique-scene’ with projects all sounding the same. This has happened enough in the scene already.On the other hand, with similar sounds it becomes easier for reviewers like myself to described this strange ‘new’ kind of music. Heathen Harvest used the term “cinematic dark ambient/noise/industrial”, I myself earlier used “sophisticated noise”, “noisescapes” and similar descriptions. ‘The Hermetique sound’ this will be, like we have the ‘CMI sound’ in dark ambient. Anyway, something new, fresh, dark and great and Hermetique seems to be the label on the hunt for projects in this vein. There are ‘hijackers on the road’ (as we say here), since my good pal Sistrenatus was signed to Cold Spring. No worries though, Hermetique currently has four cds available (Radiodrama, Post Scriptvm, Dusk Of Hope, nEGAPADRES.3.3. and this compilation) and Propergol has come up with 7 albums in 10 years. Final note, be sure to check out the wonderfull Hermetique website with many mp3s, wallpapers and a couple of great ‘trailers’! <28/4/06><4>

v/a * All My Dead Friends (cd 2006 cold meat industry)

It was a long wait after the previous compilation from CMI. The new one has a rather dull title, but it is about the music of course. CMI-samplers are always looked forward to by many people. “All My Dead Friends” has a different ‘concept’ than previous CMI-samplers. On this cd, no acts from the old guard; no Brighther Death Now, no Deutsch Nepal, no Raison d’être, even no Sephiroth or The Protagonist. The oldest band on this new compilation is Coph Nia. I don’t know most of the projects and, I believe, none of the tracks. Most tracks are nice to good (except for a horrible song by Stormfagel). The previous compilation “Flowers Made Of Snow” rose the suggestion that CMI would move towards more popular folky sounds, but “All My Dead Friends” fortunately doesn’t continue this path. Dark ambient (the famous CMI-sound), more industrial, even ‘old-fashioned’ industrial (reminding of Memorandum) and a few less-electronic bands make a compilation that I will probably play more than the compilations with tracks that were later released on the bands’ cds.

v/a * :A Final Testimony: (2cd 2004 hau ruck!)

This is a goodbye compilation for the Seküencias de Culto magazine and was released by Albin Julius. It is a very diverse compilation. It opens with hard industrial and noise from bands like Propergol, Operation Cleansweep and Thorofon, but there is also dark ambient from for example Raison d’Être, folky music from In Gowan Ring, Hekate and Camerata Mediolanense and I should definately not forget to mention the contributions of Inade, Tribe Of Circle and Turbund Sturmwerk. This and more comes in a nice double digipack with moody artwork. A very nice compilation.

v/a * 10 Years Of Madness (Behind The Iron Curtain) cd 2000 achtung baby!)

This is a compilation cd to celebrate 10 years of existence of the Russian underground culture magazine Achtung Baby! (1988-1998). A double cd in an A5 booklet with silver printing on black paper with on one disc mostly industrial and ambient music and on the other disc more folky music.
However I believe that the cd was made available quite recently (at least to a larger public), it seems that it was actually released or planned for a while ago. The booklet -for example- states that all tracks safe the one of Sanctum are exclusive, but I happen to already know a several of them.
The first disc is the industrial / ambient disc and I must say that I am not too crazy about it. Most tracks are very monotous and too minimal for my liking. The only very good track is of Turbund Sturmwerk, which is a slightly different version of the last track of their latest cd (before the ‘ghost track’). The other bands are Reutoff, Inade, Skrol (quite a nice track), Solar Salt, 4th Sign Of The Apocalypse, First Law, Sanctum, Reptilicus, Turbund Sturmwerk, Dissecting Table and Cyclotimia.
The second cd is already more interesting. It opens with Anima In Fiamme and continues with Feverdreams, a very silly but funny track of Der Blutharsch, a great alternative version of “The March Of Brian Boru” by Blood Axis, “Operation Valkrie” of Ostara, Argine, Novy Svet, Troum, Ataraxia, then industrial tracks of the Hybryds, The Infant Cycle, Dream Intro Dust and Les Joyaux de la Princesse, a folky song of Ain Soph and a nice closer off by Stahlwerk 9.
All in all quite a descent overview of the scene, but as with many compilations there are only a handfull of tracks that I like.

Sturmovik * Schwarzer Tau (12″ 2005 tesco)

Five years after “Feldweihe” there is a new 12″ of Sturmovik. This lp is less dark, less industrial and less martial than its predecessor. Sturmovik this time more made something dark ambient with a slightly industrial sound. “Schwarzer Tau” (“Black Dew”) is a nice lp, but I like the first one better. You can listen to the music on the Tesco website.