Harvesting #5: Have we passed the test or are we nostilevo? [Part II]

Time for another edition of Harvesting. This time, it’s Part II of the nostilevo anthology. A pretty obscure label from the former industrialized town of Detroit. Since the first part wasn’t that big, I’ve decided to enlarge it further. Four artists and releases from the nostilevo label will accompany you this dark and rainy October-night. Those that are included in this part are the following: Craow, Siobhan, and Slaymaker Welding. I must warn you about the nature of this music, it isn’t for those of you that are experience an excessive headache right now. So, if you’re not, you shall look no further – because this is some of the hardest experimental music I’ve heard in a while. Before you move on to the music and the reviews, you should check out their page over here. Brace yourself, because this is going to be one hell of a ride!

Craow – C-Bank

What could this be? It sounds like 8-bit meets industrialized havoc, squeezed into a barrel of power electronics. This is Craow and the release C-Bank, which will be out tomorrow on the 7th of October. It feels like Craow issues a great big chunk of lost industrial with this tape. It certainly feels like that, when you listen to the first song “No Time“. Whirling mechanical noises, a sturdy base drum and monotone meets monologue. At times it even feels glitchy, but it’s hard to put any weight in categorizing this. The total mesmerizing sound of the past, combined with the wickedness of experimentalism. It’s not an exaggeration when I say I just felt the end of the fucking world, like pieces of earthly matter crumbling beneath me, incorporated with total anarchy and chaos. There’s such a contrast between the first song and the second song on the album, because “Square Blocks & Dead End Streets” feels like some retro-80’s meeting cold wave darkness.

Maybe this is the part where they battle their way through many levels of alien forces. Further into the song, wailing vocalists make their entrance. It feels like a weird combination, but it actually works. Somehow, it feels like they’re putting on a serenade just for me, personally. And since I love the 80’s so much, I’m reminded of the Streetfighter soundtrack for some odd reason. Maybe I’m just deluded, or maybe it’s just that. I think I’m pretty off to be honest, since it was released in the 90’s and I’m here babbling about the 80’s. However, it might just be the fusion of the two that make this great. Also, the lack of a conventional approach to it, with anarchy as a motto but controlled chaos as a secondary objective. I’m impressed by the album as a whole, but those tracks are probably my absolute favorites.

Get yourself a copy from their bandcamp. Digital-only download for five dollars, a physical cassette for eight dollars. It’s also limited to 100 copies, so snatch one as soon as you can. There are some really mesmerizing tracks on that album, and you should have it as a cassette so you can brag in front of your friends. Support their cause and buy one, it’s not that expensive to be honest.

Siobhan – Mind Court

This is not the first time that I write about unconventional stuff, but there’s also a guy named Siobhan whom releases some of that stuff. His release Mind Court is a real genre-hopper and is made up out of two different sides. Side A and Side B, which means that there’s a big possibility for including things you like. On “Side A” of the coin, there’s a lot of things happening. Starting off with some lo-fi lounge that sounds really funky, which transgresses into an abomination that could be called “industrial“. I like the wide array of different genres that are mashed together within this Side, it leaves nothing to the imagination and actually sounds like a good mixtape. My favorite parts might not be the skull bashing industrial side of it, one of my favorite parts actually consist of some hard-hitting electro. No, not that stuff that’s being put up and sold as electro, I’m talking about the real deal. Robotic, fat base drums and bone crushing beats. At first it starts off with a siren and ambiance, consistently pushing through a harder sound and letting the steam go, which drops the fattest bass drum you should ever hear in your life.

Reminding me of a lo-fi version AS1 at times, but with the heaviness and girth of Ra-X. Since this bad boy is lo-fi, it makes the sound-scape much more enjoyable. It also feels like the drum is going to pierce my thick skull at any given time. “Side B” also has some memorable passages, I like the down-tempo techno one, crushing everything in its way. There’s also a deeper passage which sounds like something in between darkwave and goth rock, with hard-hitting industrial at the core of it. Shooting lasers, guided missiles and an overall bombastic experience, if you listen to it as a whole. Everything neatly packed into lo-fi, for your listening pleasure.

You get the same prices as you’d get for the other tape. There’s the five dollars for a digital download-only release and eight dollars for the limited edition cassette. Latter one includes a digital download version of it also, and the cassette is limited to 100 copies. It will be released on the 9th of October and I hope you’ll be one of the first to get it. So get yourself over there and order it, follow the link at the end of this sentence. My mind is starting to crash on me right now, but I’ll have to endure the other two releases also.

Slaymaker Welding – Ov Melt Ruin

It’s probably one of the more loud releases I’ve covered so far. Going to the extreme and pushing it to the limit, with Slaymaker Welding and the release: Ov Melt Ruin. How does it sound when you hit different objects against metal or other surfaces, do they create a reasonable amount of noise? The answer is: yes. Experimenting in between the barriers of glitch and power electronics. Some industrial is also included, and can be found within the first side of the mix: “Side A“. My ears tell me that this music is just pure noise and nothing more than that. But my brain begs to differ, you can hear distinct noises as they hit each surface at different speeds and different angles. The more metallic and enduring noise gets switched out with a more electronic one, as if there are sparks flying across the pavement. If electricity can make noise, which it can, this would be the embodied sound of it.

Listening more closely to it, you feel like there’s something haunted going on in the sound-scape. Sounding like a resonating heavy metal sound, quickly delving deep into a sea of metal. No, not the conventional heavy metal – but heavy metal as in the metal itself and not the genre. As I’m starting to get into it, it feels like Side A is much harder to get into than “Side B“, because the b-side of the tape sounds like something that could be much closer to the general sound of power electronics. My ears are being torn apart and I finish it by listening to the b-side and discovering a whole other side to it. I feel like such an amateur when describing it, but it could be described as: you don’t tread into these lands, they tread on you. When the noises fade out, it feels like I’m being blessed, because I couldn’t endure that much of it to be honest. But I guess that’s what the producer of this music would want me to feel, like I’ve experienced something beyond normality. And that’s how it feels, now I’m going to rest my ears for some time.

I was going to take the last release in consideration, but since my ears and my brain need a little rest from this, it will show up somewhere else. Fetch your own copy of it, digital-only download for five dollars as usual and eight dollars for the limited edition cassette. Limited to 100 copies. You should get this if you’re into this kind of music, otherwise I wouldn’t recommend it. Since I’m not into it, I’ll be enjoying the aesthetics of it instead. There’s some damn fine esthetic components in this release and I believe it could become a collectors item at some point. Get it over here.

Harvesting #4: Should darkness engulf us or nostilevo? [Part I]

Welcome back to another edition of Harvesting. Since I missed out on writing about it yesterday, I will be writing two parts about a detroit-label nostilevo. First I’m going to start off with a completely unrelated tune that you’ll find down below, and then I’ll venture into the world of nostilevo. So you’re reading Part I of the recommendation and review right now, which will mean that Part II is going to be featured on my blog within some hours. This time, you’re going to open your eyes and see with your third eye, because in this edition the following bands are featured: Mirror Talk and Dream Affair. Prepare yourself by lighting some candles and fetching some nice stuff to eat, because this is going to be a trip into the ultimate darkness. Therefore I’ll start it off with a little bit of light in the end of the tunnel, hope you enjoy it.

Mirror Talk – secret homes

Probably one of my favorite tracks as of now. Discovered it recently, a project called “Mirror Talk“, steered by Dominik Noé from Berlin. Since this is only a song, I will make this one short. Wonderful melodies, rhythms and sound-scape overall. Think of a blend with the best analog pop, synth-wave and cold wave. The song he’s got up that I’m going to recommend in this edition will be a song called: “secret homes“. Clear and fast-paced synths, combined with funky rhythms and a singer that knows what he’s doing. You should check out his other songs too, but I think you should buy this song for one dollar. It’s catchy and leaves a mark, it’s got a special touch and will make you dance until the break of dawn. There’s many adolescent feelings in this song too, and also feelings of nostalgia. With the best from the 00’s and the most influential 80’s, if you like that kind of crossover, make your way over to his bandcamp. I’ll be linking it in the end of this sentence.

Dream Affair – Aborted State

It’s been a long time ago since I heard some awesome goth rock. Good for me, since I don’t have to look any further. Dream Affair have taken care of me, ever since I found them. With their embrace of the first wave of goth, with a touch of the second wave. There’s been a lot of bad goth rock bands lately, so this one could serve as a breaking point in between them. I’ve focused a lot on their latest album Aborted State which is bound to be released on the 9th of October. With muddy textures and suggestive lyrics, the first song “Syndrome” really indulges itself with worship of sworn times. But there’s not only that, since they’ve developed their own version of this mighty genre. It’s not a copy of a copy, but rather something new and interesting. Even though they use about the same techniques as the bands did back then, they’ve maxed out and I’d put them somewhere in between Rozz Williams project Christian Death and one of the newer additions whom have also been interviewed on this blog, namely Psychic Teens.

Since the first track is pretty straight-forward and embody everything good about the genre, the second track “Outside” employ more of a darkwave approach to the goth rock sound. A rather weird sounding combination of both genres, but sometimes the enthralling vocalist and his back-up singer manages to pave the way and uphold the sound-scape. There’s something nocturnal within this song, something you’d want to fix your ears and eyes on. As if the aesthetic is repeating itself in the music. Even though some parts turn me off, they’ve managed to pull of a sincere and emotional song titled “The Porter“, which at times remind me of Nightmare Fortress in many ways. What I love about the song is the futuristic vocals and the endless piano-stick that moves through with the rest of the sound-scape. It’s filled with visions and it’s ready to take off, and I’ll take my hat of and nod in your direction, Dream Affair.

You can buy their 4-track album over at the nostilevo bandcamp. If you order the digital-only version of it, you’ll have to give them five dollars. However, if you want a limited edition cassette, you’ll have to put out eight dollars. But I assure you that it’s worth the money. Then you’ll get both the digital and the physical version of it, and since it’s limited to 100 copies, you’ll be one of the lucky ones that will have this great album in their hands.