alternative rock / post-punk
A little bit of Ramones, some Sonic Youth, a flash of Teenage Jesus And The Jerks and a touch of Slowdive, that might get you an idea of what Turkish garage rock act Reptilians From Andromeda have released upon the world. The ep opens with some rough, mid-tempo tracks but suddenly dives into noise-rock insanity with the eerie 'We Are Who We Are', which sounds like Hole on some weird drug. Right after, they pour a synth-poppy shoegaze thing in our ears. Weird, very weird, but damn immersive and definitely ready to make their entree into the world of noise-rock and garage rock, and entree through the grand gate if you ask me. Interesting stuff...
noise rock / experimental / post punk
An experimental rock act that reminds me of bands like Cabaret Voltaire and Crash Course In Science, that is odd. I think the last one that managed to do that, was Black Dice. Anyway, Postman seems to draw influences from everything between Ween, Joy Division, Sonic Youth and the aforementioned bands to come up with some surprising songs. The set-up seems to be minimal, synth, drums, guitars but what they do with those instruments, is far from limited and often results in decent gloomy pop songs. 'Escape Velocity' is one of my favorite tracks but I strongly suggest to check out the album if you're a fan of strange, out-of-the-box releases. Hell, there's even a hint of dub and reggae here, or even Iggy Pop, or post-rock... Great stuff!
electronic / electro-rock
Somewhere in California, this duo is barking out a strange blend of glitchy electronics and rock music which kinda reminds of something between Lydia Lunch, Archive and Autechre. The songs on this ep are quite danceable pieces of music, but come with a gloomy new wave atmosphere. Their main influences seem to be Glitch Mob, Sleigh Bells and Purity Ring but, to be quite honest, I like this little ep a lot more than those acts, especially the somewhat industrial 'Edge Of Infinity'. There is a certain gritty feeling about this one, an impending atmosphere. It reminds me a bit of some Tricky songs but, again, way better. 'Parish' is a brilliant piece of joyful glitch electronics, something you definitely should check out...
metal / metalcore
French extremists Aanod move somewhere between metalcore and the melodic death metal of the Götheborg scene. Yet, somehow they combine it with a modern sound, plenty of variation, electronics and epic ambient textures. The result is a massive and pounding ep, loaded with energy and sheer violence. The music feels suited for the tiniest of venues and the biggest of metal festivals alike, which isn't easy to accomplish I think. For the record, metalcore isn't really my thing, but I can surely respect the level of songwriting and the technical skills of these guys. So, all you metalcore kids, check this one out, it might as well become one of your favorite bands.
post metal / doom
Hailing from Poland, Moanaa have released a debut in 2014, now followed by a blast. With elements from post-rock, doom, sludge metal and psychedelic rock, they create a highly immersive sonic adventure. In some strange way, these songs remind me of a heavy and more intense version of some Cure songs, played by a mishmash of bands, including A Place To Bury Strangers and Cult Of Luna. The overall atmosphere is intense, dark and downright crushing at times. The vocals usually are clean, except from a few growling outbursts, something I can truly appreciate. In all 'Passage' is a tremendous album, perfectly suited for any post-metal fan out there. Check it out, you need this.
shoegaze / alternative
Alternative rock and post-punk, interlaced with joyous dreampop, that's what you get on this ep by Finnish quartet Mumrunner. The four tracks on this album remind me a lot of acts like Cocteau Twins, Slowdive and even The Cure. 'Shawshank' is my favorite song on this ep, an uptempo earworm that gets stuck in your head, an ability most of the songs actually have, even the punky shoegazer 'Cascais'. This truly is stuff for the dark and murky dance floors all over the world, which obviously comes highly recommended. I hope I get the chance to see this quartet soon. I'm sure they will guarantee an immersive live performance, causing entire venues to dance the night away...
psychedelic / blues / folk
Oh man, I absolutely love this newfound interest in seventies music. Take this French trio Dätcha Mandala and their latest ep for example, a brilliant piece of psychedelic blues rock which could have come directly from the studios where people like Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles recorded their stuff. 'Misery' is a gloomy blues ballad (with a beautiful guitar solo) while 'Mojoy' is a pretty heavy rocker, somehow reminding me of Black Crowes. Both songs are excellent examples of how this newfound interest should sound: vintage, convincing and perfectly executed. I hope this single will be followed by a full-length and a tour soon.
Portuguese horde Colosso have released a behemoth, a pungent blend of death metal and industrial, loaded with soundscapes and sheer ferocity. The result might indeed be one of the most impressive death metal albums in 2016. Somehow it reminds me of a mix between Carcass and Limbonic Art, crushing the boundaries of one genre and smashing right into another one. This album is a ranging assault of blast beats, haunting screams and vicious, often droning riffs and pure noise created with the sole intention of demolishing anything in its path. I admit, you have to be used to some level of crushing death metal before you can handle this, but once inside, the beast never lets go.
electronic / techno
Dance music right after death metal, because why the fork not? Besides, this isn't ordinary, stale and unimagined techno. In fact, there's only one true techno tune on this ep (and its remix), 'Obsession'. True, it's not my favorite but it might get some people dancing. Opener 'Vanished Breath' is more like an eerie ambient tune while a great track 'The Ritual' is a breakbeat inspired vintage electro act. Speaking of vintage electro, 'M.U.M.' seems to come directly from the seventies when people like Klaus Schulze and Kraftwerk were pioneering in experimenting with electronic music. So yeah, this fits perfectly on this edition of brieviews.
electronic / ambient / experimental
Speaking of acts like Kraftwerk, Schulze and Tangerine Dream, here are two pieces of circular synth and tape-loop music, courtesy of Italian artist Marta De Pascalis. Both are long tracks, seemingly based around a central theme but constantly moving and changing. Title track 'Anzar' really takes me back to those early electronics pioneers, often coming up with some folkish melodies along with the cold synth sequences. 'Emerso' sounds a bit darker, somewhat nudging towards the ambient scene. In all, I like this one a tad better than the opener, probably because of its lingering soundscapes. In all, this certainly is an interesting release, which comes highly recommended to anyone who loves those old, almost psychedelic electronics. But be quick, there are only 100 copies of this tape...
experimental / ambient / noise
Another strange two-track album comes from Belgian label Silken Tofu, who released this one-session recording of Jonas Van den Bossche & Benne Dousselaere. These two tracks are elaborate audio-adventures with drones, noise, soundscapes, synths, guitar and minimal percussion. On hand hand, the music reminds me of acts like De Fabriek, Machinefabriek; Maurizio Bianchi and Tim Hecker, while there's also a hint toward ancient electronics and gloomy eighties electro. It constantly changes, mostly driving on one or a few drones. In fact, the only thing that remains a constant on this album, is the quality. This thing definitely comes highly recommended.
From "meh", over "hm, interesting" to "fuck yeah" in mere thirty seconds, that's not an easy task to accomplish but this German trio somehow managed to do exactly that. I wasn't fond if the opening of this ep, but gradually it grew on me and halfway through 'Eyes of the Scythe Wielder', I was heabanging along with their chaotic and primitive approach to black metal. Nothing fancy, no over produced feel good shit, just sheer violence and intense blasphemy. This ep sounds like it comes directly from an underground bunker in the early nineties when the blackened scene was just beginning to make headlines everywhere. If you like your black metal true, bleak and vulgar, this is your album of the week.