For those uninitiated, Neon Insect is the personal industrial project of German based musician, Nils Sinatsch. He has been at this from a fairly young age and is a rather accomplished fellow. This year sees the release of his album, New Moscow Underground.

Thanks Nils for the Cyrillic text of the opening piece, .До свидания!, aka “Goodbye!”. Unless you can read Russian, this will be lost on you but the intro greets you with national drunken fervour and the sounds of maybe someone being tortured and gunfire……..

“Fist, Hit, Cracking Bones” however really packs a nice punch, if you can forgive the pun with this first single. Featuring KVMILLA on vocal backup, complimenting Nils‘ deeper tones, highlighting the darkness. There is very little information on this lady other than she lives in Sweden, has a YouTube channel and likes to cook.

‘If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever…..’ is a hard to forget quote from George Orwell and the start to “This Is Our City”. A build up of sound apon a constant beat, only to broken by the unearthly vocals. Defiance in the face of the ever tightening grip of authority.

Like an ode to Blade Runner, “Dear Cyborg” featuring NURS, starts in the rain with low menace as the tempo builds in an ever growing electronic screeching/squealing of song. This slightly experimental mash of sounds has New Yorker, NURS who is known for her industrial/post industrial/experimental noise.

Nils Sinatsch – NEON INSECT

The beginning of “Mazerunner” featuring Earl Squanchy (the next door neighbour who just happens to be a rapper), just really hits me as a reminder of Fields Of The Nephilim. A slower track with it’s desolate, wind swept feel, plodding along to meet whatever is left of humanity. Slightly discordant with that old saloon piano at the end.

Long Live The Queen or “L.L.T.Q.” is dark heavy stuff and previously features on the album Glitches. Featuring Claus Larsen of Leæther Strip and this time around wonderfully remixed by Slighter, this has hints of that beat made famous by The Prodigy in “Firestarter”, punctuating this number once it takes off from a sludgy beginning. Static and noise crest to a nearly unbearable level, until it drops, only to clean you up in the follow through. Having Claus Larsen singing on your track is the industrial equivalent to having the Queen of England as your personal Facebook friend.

“h4CX” has my imagination thinking it sounds like the synapses going off in the brain, this is the joy of brilliant beats with light electronic tones. It feels like a journey at light speed. There is something almost delicate about this, which I can’t quite put my finger in and its over it seems so quickly, even though it goes for almost four and a half minutes.

Second single off the album is “It’s Gotta Be Me”. This is actually a really funky number with a super infectious chorus. Very electronic and yet it just seems so smooth. Vocally this is suitably low and growly, just what the doctor ordered. Definitely nothing wrong with this song what-so-ever.

“Downtown Network” featuring New Moscow Exile Ensemble is great piece of music and it is a mixture of noise and feedback with classical instrumentation woven into the fabric. There is a most ambient air to this.

Slow and oppressive is how “Blossom” feels. Heavy like the steel in Sinatsch‘s voice for such a light title of a flower. The female voice is what gives this piece shards of light filtering in the dark folds. And so end this journey.

There is an audio drama at the end which has talented voice actors helping to tell this tale.

An Orwellian vision of the future or a dystopic view of current life? You are going to have to decide this. But while you ponder this question, you can revel in the music Neon Insect has offered up which is so very varied and rich in it’s textures. It is like looking though a fractured lens with dark hues and lengthening shadows.

This is the third album under the name of Neon Insect, however Sinatsch is a seasoned artist with many more projects under his belt as well as being a sound engineer.

We hope this is a successful venture leading to more albums. So if ruination, Orwell, cybernetics and visions in noise are your thing, then you better get this album now!!

Please note that you can order the CD on September the 15th and the Cassette on August the 30th through Bandcamp.

http://www.neon-insect.de

http://www.neoninsect.bandcamp.com

Instagram + Twitter: @neoninsect


Finally I get around to this. While I was writing for another publication, I promised one Daniel Graves, that I would review the next album he brought out. Enough of the excuses as Aesthetic Perfection did give us another new album in March, titled Into The Black.

“God’s And Gold” kicks this off and all you can think is, if this is the first track then what is rest going to be like?! This is a stonking number and deserves to be the single. It is beautifully bass heavy and Graves‘ throat ripping vocals are offset by his gorgeous, angelic voice that he sweetens our ears with. Do we need, crave or turn away from deities and riches? So bloody catchy. Richard Z Kruspe of Rammstein fame, beats us over the head with that guitar work.

The techno/ industrial beat is going to grab you and take you into the ‘Wickedness’. It is just dirty enough, you can feel the sexy smuttiness make you wiggle your arse. We like this type of wickedness.

“No Boys Allowed” could be considered the anthem track of the album and was the first single released. The title of this song may not be what you think and is in no way a sexist piece in the slightest. This is an ode to being allowed to be who you are and not being bullied into someone else’s ideal, ie a ‘real man’ and not a boy. A song that is also a powerful comment. The music is slightly off kilter, with electronic bleeps and estranged keyboard strains.

We are treated to a sweetly sung melody from Graves at the beginning of “Supernatural”. Questioning faith in the afterlife and God …. how much do you need to believe to get through this existence? It’s an almost pretty number.

“Echoes” is a far more pop orientated number, featuring Jinxx of Black Veil Brides. With a catchy chorus, this is very pleasant on the ears.

Track six features both Jinxx and one Krischan Wesenberg of a little industrial band called Rotersand (who are well worth checking out). Graves wants to know will “We Wake Up” from the dreams we have at night or if the monsters in them will consume us and drive him crazy. This is a slow measured piece, sung with a gusto that only losing sleep can provoke.

Team White and Team Black from the video ‘Gods and Gold’

“If I Die”, again is featuring Jinxx, is a more lively number, with strong guitar riffs, highlighting the fact that even in this age of connection, if we pass, will people remember us or even care that we ceased to be. The guitar work reminds me a little of Within Temptation.

Yes!!!! Hit with the electronic beat once more and we are off with “Saint Peter”. The beat fits so perfectly with the synth and as ever Daniel‘s voice modulates between sweet and sassy. In fact it creeps me out a little that he croons eerily like IAMX‘s, Chris Corner (who has a seriously amazing voice as well).

The EBM is strong in “YOLO”, which I’m going to guess is you only live once…. modern acronyms are not my strong point but then I am from the era of a childhood under nuclear threat and this resonates no matter what your age.

The last song, “Mourning Doves”, has a real 80’s sound to it. Slightly bittersweet in its sentiment and it soars in its simplicity. Again Jinxx joins in and this is a gorgeous way to finish the album.

As well as the input from Kruspe, Jinxx and Wesenberg, you can also find the guitar work by Anaal Nathrakh guitarist, Mick Kenney who also co-wrote several of the songs.

For all intents and purposes, Graves is indeed the driving force of Aesthetic Perfection and it is his talent and vision that have developed the sound from originally aggrotech to smooth EBM/industrial with a pop sensibility.

This is very much an introspective album in many ways. It questions religion, spirituality, life, death and does it all really matter in the end or do you simply accept this life and live it because you only get one shot.

Aesthetic Perfection are one hundred percent independent by self releasing on Bandcamp and Patreon. I would really encourage anyone who hasn’t listen to Graves before or not indulged in bathing their ears with Into The Black, to do so. This is a ripper and will continue to grow on you.

https://www.facebook.com/aestheticperfection/

https://aestheticperfection.bandcamp.com/

https://www.patreon.com/danielgraves