Spotlight: Kazeria, A.D. Mana, Strucktura, TRAITRS

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In this spotlight we’ve chosen four artists/groups that are different – yet alike in many ways. There will be a lot of darkwave, coldwave and industrial music in this spotlight. Mostly because those are the genres where we find ourselves at home, because there’s immense talent to be found there. We start off with noisy industrial music and end with gloomy post-punk extravaganza.

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Kazeria was unknown to me when I found his music via Gradual Hate Records. It was his latest release, “Nihilist Militant“, that caught my eye. The aesthetics were impressive when it comes to the artwork for this release, but more was to be discovered when pressing play. He’s created very intimate and atmospheric industrial music, coupled with dark ambient overtones. Keep in mind that these songs are totally unedited versions, created between 2003 and 2007 – which is a representation of how it sounded back then.

There’s a great assertiveness in his music, it almost borders to the bombasticism of martial industrial. As stated by the label, this is a “very personal” release, which really shows in the emotions he conveys with his music. It is both harsh and atmospheric, with destructiveness at its core. One is very impressed by the percussive rhythms he produces, which can be heard the clearest in “Evrazia Regnat” – a very disciplined and ambitious track in regards to melodies as well. Even the very short ballad-like song “Irminsul” has a certain grace.

This release is a great way to get into his music and if you pre-order the last copy in the special package – you get a gas mask as well. Can’t get more industrial then that. Listen to the release down below, buy it if it is of interest to you.

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A.D. Mana is a relatively new artist from Berlin. The re-release of his first and only, self-titled EP, on cassette – had me at the first song “Take Hold” – a stern coldwave rendition that catches multiple influences, like synth-pop and darkwave, molding it into a sinister blend together with his voice. The synthesizer stabs are clear but at the same time dark and brooding, a strange combination which at first doesn’t seem to work but as the song progresses it is obvious that it does. “Down The Wire“, another song on the release, almost funnels the post-punk vibes into some odd kind of grungy synth-pop-‘n’-roll.

My favorite song on the release, except the first one, is “Honour“. It adds gracefulness to the messy environment of the songs in general. Even though you’re caught slightly off-guard by his voice – not in a good way – it fits in place after a few moments into the song. There are some great rhythms as well, aptly executed. The melodies are unorthodox, which makes me like it even more. You expect more of the same but get tricked into the wondrous atmospheres, the groovy electronic beats – and the charming ballad-like ending within “Soulware“. A perfect instrumental track and appropriate farewell. You should really check it out, and buy the cassette from sentimental, if it suits you.

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I’ve actually heard about this artist, Strucktura, whilst browsing through the bandcamp-feed. But I never paid much attention to the music. There’s some really solid darkwave-inspired music in his “Statues Also Die” release on Oráculo Records. While the synthesizers and beats are on point in the release, there’s some really cheesy lyrics. In a weird way they go along well with the music, so I will leave that alone. The music seems awfully cheerful but at the same time moody and distraught – which is something that adds character to the songs. Especially in “Val D’Aran“. 

There’s a nice futuristic vibe about each song and it comes out differently, even though most of the rhythm and melodies are alike. As dreary as the atmospheres may be at times – they come out as dreamy – and are filled with nicely laden synthesizer sweeps, alongside well constructed rhythms and melodies. It is a release you should check out, if it is something for you – buy the limited edition vinyl via Oráculo Records.

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Torontian band TRAITRS have created some of the most soothing, coherent post-punk music I’ve heard in a while. The oomph of the baseline resounds throughout in the first song “Witch Trials“. It is really weird how each and every song on the release is anthemic on its own – it is mostly reserved to one or a few songs – but this is catchy, ambitious and on fire from the matchsticks up until the light goes ablaze. It is especially noticeable in “Lya“, one of the more minimalistic songs. The singer gets a certain kind of emotional streak in the chorus which makes you want to sing along to the lyrics.

Not to mention how massive “Gallows” is. Here they’ve really gotten through with the originality of their sound. They both have an edge in the music and somewhere to stand firm – nothing is left to chance, everything is constructed meticulously. When one gets as far as their last song “Heretic“, the percussionism is simply mindblowing. Of all the releases recommended in this spotlight, this is the one I will have to choose myself as the best one. You can get it from the Warsawian label Alchera Visions, buy it here and stream it down below.

 

Exclusive Premiere: Alles – Fala

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Unhinged to the utmost degree, fumbling in the dark to connect the dots. From a viable option to a crazed mixture, you couldn’t imagine how it would be if electro-pop was turned upside down and channeled through minimal synth. With the uncompromising duo Alles – comprised of Marcin Regucki and Paweł Strzelec – anything goes. Include a vision beyond a communist society, post-communism if you will, infused with modern society’s delusional consumerism and empty-handed materialism and you’ve got the fuse to set things off. Enhanced beats waddle through a decayed interior, an urban environment that is almost claustrophobic. With the help of different genres like cold-wave, synthwave and every other electronic sub-genre you could think of – everything’s already post-something. These two men create an invitation for both a linguistic invitation to basic Polish – to a more international touch of English, entering the digital age of errors with “404” – getting to the middle-ground with technical ingeniousness with “GPS“. If there would be any need for a red line, just follow their sound-scape and try understanding the meaning of their lyrics and the titles for their tracks. As much as they give hints to what’s going on, they might also mislead you into thinking something else – the ambivalent quality which is; their cunningness.

This is their debut-album that lies in front of your eyes anew. It’s not the physical version, but their digital packaging that you’re viewing. As forthright as their intentions are, there’s no doubt why the name of this album is “Post“. Six months ago they had a cassette which constituted the original form of their debut – now they’re re-mastered, re-packaged – officially launched on vinyl. Don’t be mistaken, the foundation they stand upon is the same and their intentions also seem to be intact. Only one thing has changed besides what have already been written and that is; this time around they have a brand new track which goes with the purchase of the vinyl. This vinyl-edition is limited to 500 copies and comes as a transparent vinyl, together with “Fala” (Wave) – the exception which confirms the rule – an anomaly which showcases their musical ambivalence. Repartiseraren have been lucky enough to receive the honor of exclusively premiering “Fala“, as we collaborate with Mecanica Records whom are releasing the vinyl. Stream this song exclusively down below and pre-order a limited vinyl, shipping on the 25th of October. Or if you don’t have the patience to wait that long, order the digital version which is out on the 15th of October. Here comes the wave that will flood your gates.

If you want to see this duo perform, their next date(s) will be 18/10 on Klubokawiarnia Chlodina in Warsaw, 31/10 on Urban Spree (Sinewaves) in Berlin, and 28/11 on C.R.K (Return To The Batcave) in Wroclaw.

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Spotlight: Various Artists – W A V E C O R E 2!

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This is a compilation released last year that I meant to cover, but never had the time to cover. W A V E C O R E is essentially a compilation that features artists and groups that have any connection with the label releasing it, namely Anywave, or artists and groups of their liking. It’s a compilation that last year on the seventeenth of December got released in its second edition. The first edition of this compilation was released earlier that year, but I simply scrolled by it and didn’t mention it at all – which is a shame, really. Both compilations feature artists and groups from far and away, all the way from Mexico to Kiev, from Montreal to Poland. Essentially, they haven’t really gotten that much in common, except the fact that they each represent a genre that is virtually unrepresented in the mainstream. Such genres as cold wave, “post wave”, minimal electronics, and the like – have rarely (if ever) struck a chord with the mainstream. Much can be said about that, but most of it is also only represented by alternatives – if they’re trendy, or fit the construed mold of the month.

Anyway, less blabbering about what’s bound to happen, and more about what isn’t. There are a lot of artists and groups on this compilation that I didn’t even know existed, before. Like for example Défecit Budgétaire, Amalaise, Минск, Supahmoonmoon and Jari Pitkänen. The others, I know a bit about, or know a little more then that. Brusque Twins were one of my more obvious finds last year. Whilst I only know a little bit about Psychic Hearts, L’Avenir, Blablarism, Prairie, Jaqueline Sauvage, Kindest Cuts, Mareux, How To Disappear Completely and Seventeen At This Time. All these artists and groups are featured on this compilation, which is seventeen tracks long, spanning on a time that clocks in at roughly seventy minutes. The wonderfully constructed artwork was created by Myriam Barchetat, printed by Atelier OASP, songs were carefully selected by Half Summer – and the whole she-bang was mastered at Anywave Studio – which is basically their own studio.

So, what can be found here? Anything that would interest you if you’re into more obscure music. Everything from post-punk with harsher electronica, to minimal electronics throwing a hizzy fit, together with the most weird and out-there ambient you can find. But that’s not all, as you’ll stumble upon some concrete synth-pop, magical future-pop and utterly brilliant experimental electronics. Well, this is obviously not everything that can be depicted, but it’s a taste of what you can hear there. If you want to buy this compilation, it comes in various forms. A limited DIY digipack for 12 dollars, both compilations digitally for 20 dollars, both compilations physically on CD – together with “Onlooker” by Avgvst, for 25 dollars. Also, the compilation itself can be bought digitally for 7 dollars. So you make up your mind, but listen to and stream it down below – it will be well worth it if you tune in.

Review: Abandoned Asylum – Derelicts Of Distant Hope (CD)

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Yet another review coming from Malignant Records, in the form av Abandoned Asylum, which is the solo-project of Lukasz “Dani” Czajka, the polish native that was newly signed. In case you didn’t know, his release “Derelicts Of Distant Hope” is his first full-length album. Having released two digital EP’s on the much revered Kalpamantra Records, earlier. Whereas his mantra is dark ambient with a touch of industrial, there might be more to it. The project itself was founded in 2004 and has had a long time to get crafted. So, it’s time to deliver a review of this release here on Invisible Guy, so scroll down and view it as a whole. It will be yet another track-by-track review, just so everything is covered within this release as the review progresses. Once again, thanks to the postal service of the US, I get no other impression than the front-cover and the music at hand.

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Slowday Showcase [#7.5]: Rusted Brain and Crystal Maze!

954218932-1Time for the last round of the Slowday Showcase. It’s been two slow fucking days and I’m not going back. Time for a barrage of thrash, with the polish purveyors Rusted Brain. Currently being actualized with their album “High Voltage Thrash“, which surely makes a name in and of itself. It’s obvious that these maniacs have conjured this fine landscape of sound, to enthrall us mortals with their very presence. As a whole, they blend the heaviness of black metal in their subliminal background, as they portray their own thrash in a more positive light – making it the overlapping sound of the whole she-bang. Technically, this rips me to shreds whilst listening and the utmost riff will tingle in my spine for minutes after the song is complete. Unfortunately, only two songs are featured from the track-list of nine songs. Which makes this a little bit harder to pass judgement on, but if I concentrate, I shall be able to do it. The only thing that might not be so fascinating about it is the vocals, but everything else is totally on point. But, yeah, the singer is not only problematic, he delivers a whole ripping out of the dungeon. It might not always match the crazy sound-scape, but he at least makes an effort and energizes a barrage of riffs, before the drums are totally whacked out of existence, due to the thrashing. If there’s one album where you can’t use the word “thrash” enough, it might actually be this one. In one notion or another, they remind me of a thrashing outfit, influenced by Vader to a degree. At least when it comes to the underlying heaviness and the general picture of a “huge” landscape of sound, dwelling in the dark, waiting to hunt you down. Fuck, this is surely one of the much better releases in that category this year alone. What a great way to start your year, with a total annihilation of your brain. Or at least your eardrums. Quickly, fetch your head and head-bang to it, because it will be worth it in the end. Featuring tracks ranging from “Intro (Apocalypse Now)” and “Burn ‘Em“, but only two songs up right now. Released by the American label Tridroid Records on the 21st of February.

1278532432-1Have you ever wanted some of that sweet techno from Detroit back? Well, wait no longer, because it is returning. From this duo coming from different parts of the world, namely Italy and the Netherlands. They’re called Crystal Maze and will never cease to amaze. Currently achieving their dream with a totally new double-LP album titled “Enter The Maze“. Everything clings to the ambient sphere of things, with a lot of overlaying Detroit techno for the masses to indulge in. But I don’t think this is going to appeal to them, more than it will appeal to you hardcore Detroit techno fans out there. There’s a lot of minimalism in it, some influences of IDM and other things that will get you off course. Imagine yourself twirling into the weirdest galaxy you’ve ever been in, following the trail of 808 beats and sufficient blip-bloops. Imagine being out for a walk, in the middle of the country, while it’s raining. Your ideal soundtrack would of course be something like this, as you contemplate about life through the eyes of Crystal Maze. Something about these tracks also sound mystical, as if they were embodying a more jazz-induced experience, but instead within the realms of electronica. Suggestive landscapes, cigarettes blowing smokes and dank, unlit neighborhoods. Hard, swooping electro is not an exception either, which would be a telltale of their amazing width and length – both genre-wise and track-wise. It’s also sufficient to say that they’re not cutting any slack on these tracks, because they’re either pumping along or streaming with landscapes, that would make the genre ambient scream out in full jealously. In the snap of a finger, it can go from a mysterious manhunt, to a sincere electromechanical pick nick out in the field. Quite a rush, quite a feeling and quite abnormal when it comes to Detroit techno. At least if I reminiscence of the days before and walk away because of those in front of me. This is how you tell a story. Featuring tracks ranging from “Overture” to “Gateway 11“, released by the label aDepth Audio on the 18th of February.

D.I.Y. Hardcore Punk Fest Vol. 8

I found this over at SWNK and decided to post it here.

DIY Hardcore Punk Fest Vol. 8
13-14 July 2012
Gdynia, Poland

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Friday, 13 July:
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TZN XENNA (PL)
http://www.facebook.com/tznxennaoi

AGNOSY (UK) /ex-Beginning Of The End, Health Hazard, Doom, Give Up All Hope/
http://www.myspace.com/agnosy
http://www.facebook.com/agnosy

LAST LEGION ALIVE (Belgium)
http://www.myspace.com/lastlegionalive
http://www.facebook.com/pages/LAST-L…012477?sk=info

NERVÖUS (Germany)
http://www.facebook.com/nervous.berlin

INKWIZYCJA (PL)
http://www.inkwizycja.pl
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Inkwiz…856152?sk=info

INFEKCJA (PL)
http://www.infekcja.blogspot.com
http://www.myspace.com/infekcja

LIFE SCARS (PL)
http://www.lifescars.bandcamp.com
http://www.myspace.com/lifescarspunk

6 PM / 35 PLN (8 euro)

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Saturday, 14 July:
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ANTISECT (UK)
http://www.antisectofficial.com
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Antise…00288986727576

WOLFBRIGADE (Sweden)
http://www.myspace.com/wolfbrigadeofficial
http://www.facebook.com/lycanthropunks

SJU SVÅRA ÅR (Sweden)
http://www.myspace.com/sjusvaraar

FUTURE RUINS (Sweden)
http://www.futureruins.net
http://www.myspace.com/futureruinsofficial
http://www.facebook.com/futureruins

REGRES (PL)
http://regres.nfis.aplus.pl
http://www.myspace.com/regres
http://www.facebook.com/regres

CALM THE FIRE (PL)
http://www.facebook.com/calmthefire

CAST IN IRON (PL) /ex-Sunrise, Daymares, Coalition/
http://www.castiniron.pl/

6 PM / 40 PLN (9 euro)

Info on venue, accommodation etc: http://www.diy-fest.org

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There will be also sort of after party gig on July 15th in Gdansk at “Infinium” club.
Bands: BAGNA (Belarus), MONDAY SUICIDE (Belarus), BARAKA FACE JUNTA (PL; feat. members of STRACONY), PRODUKT (feat. members of UTOPIA and EL BANDA)
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