LMX has released his third album, Habits & Addictions, on the Meshwork Music label, as of October the 28th. Keep in mind that this German electro-pop musician isn’t even twenty yet…….

There is occasionally, a harder edge to this music than you think. “Addiction” has elements of industrial experimentation, while the circling fragile sadness of “Not Made For This” is in the morose synths even with the constant paced rhythm.

There are beautiful synth lines in the spiralling “More Time” with almost an 80s feel to it, then you have a kind of ambient euro dance thing going on with “That Summer“. The heart rending “Stay” is yet another facet of the performer and writer, with such a simple track that bares his soul. In all, there are ten tracks, all flourishing these incredible electronics and lyrics.

I know that it is the current rage to use those vocal modulation thingies to give the singing that echoing tone but I’m not a great fan of it, especially when you can hear the fact they can sing. I really wanted to hear LMX without it, however I’m sure maybe it’s just one of my foibles and I am fairly certain there is a multitude out there that absolutely love it. Other than that little quibble, it’s a really excellent dark pop album and some tracks did become embedded into the old brain box, refusing to leave.

LMX is going to have a long future in the music scene, if this is to go by and he does have a great pedigree, being the son of X Marks The Pedwalk’s ESTEFANÍA and SEVREN NI-ARB, who also helped produce this album. Habits & Addictions is emotion filled, raw and yet, in the end, looking for the light, LMX might become your addiction.



Covid decimated the music festival scene, around the world for 2020, 2021 and a good chunk of 2022. Things are coming back to normal and in fact, you can add a new festival to endeavour to attend. Dark Force Fest will kick off in 2023, over three days, March 31st to April 2nd, in New Jersey, USA.

The event is being run by VampireFreaks, at the Sheraton Hotel, in Parsippany and this is not the first time the venue has been used by the VF crew. The hotel was built like a castle, including crenulations (just in case you find yourself in a siege situation with all those goths).

There will be over 100 vendors, to buy things that make your little dark heart happy, clubs, costume competitions and sideshow performances. However, the most important thing is the music… there will be 30 plus bands/artists ranging from darkwave through to industrial. A chance to see pioneers such as Das Ich and Suicide Commando, big hitters Combichrist, Solar Fake, HEALTH, Empathy Test and ACTORS plus brilliant acts like MORIS BLAK, Third Realm, Bootsblack and Rabbit Junk.

That is a whole lot of music and an amazing line up, so you are spoilt for choice. As the inaugural show, you want to be able to say you were there for the first ever…. unlike myself, stuck in another country, half way around the world, who will have to live vicariously through others, and the buckets of fun they are having. (Insert gothic weeping).




From the wilds of British Colombia, comes forth Hem Netjer, with the single “Elemental Cry“. It has been foretold that this will be the last single off the soon to be released album, The Song Of Trees. The band consists of members Raven Rissy, David Deckard and Jesse Ellytt, while they have roped in Vardensphere’s Scott Fox for production and recorded at Jacknife Sound with Jason Corbett of Actors fame.

You can almost imagine tribal horns in a pall of fog, the rhythmic throat singing of Ellytt, under the feminine vocals of Rissy. Do not mistake feminine for weak however, as there is a steel in her singing. It is about a native connection to the land, where the people and nature are one. When the land suffers, so do the people through that spiritual umbilical cord.

One of the tags used for this is folk….. which to me is more like acoustic guitar and perhaps paying a nod towards a country’s more traditional music. Hem Netjer is, for me at least, something more savage, reaching back into spiritual history, creating a chant of empowerment. It was nice to hear a kind of reverence for the vocals and rhythm, while the electronics where not intrusive at all. Behold the raw “Elemental Cry” of Hem Netjer.

Elemental Cry | Hem Netjer (bandcamp.com)



November 15th was the one year anniversary for the creation of Lunar Paths, so to celebrate, they have packed up their five singles, into an EP. Appropriately, they have called the EP, Fused, which includes the single “Rise“, that we featured previously. The group consists of Diane Dubois and Kevin Hunter, whom in the 80s were bandmates in the goth rock band Cold Dance. Life moved on, Dubois living in the US but a year ago, technology reacquainted them and Lunar Paths was the result.

From the beginning, “Dérive” is star struck with the keyboards twinkling. When the vocals arrive, the track becomes ethereal and beautiful, slowly consuming your will to escape with siren song. Hmmm, I could tell you that “Rise” has a Middle Eastern tone but then, you could also go read my previous review or more wisely, listen to it.

Imagine falling backwards into the world of Dead Can Dance, circa Within The Realm Of A Dying Sun, and that will give you the feel and sound of “Altahilili“. Monumental and yet incredibly fragile. Next you are somewhere tropical, with the birds calling out and the natives drumming away to create “Lo Oa Soa“. Maybe the witchdoctor had you in his sights!

MetaGoth#1” starts low and bassy, while the electronics like to remind you of their presence, but then there is that magnificent guitar. Like a tether to previous era that glitches and morphs with the electronics, unable to remain in the past.

Dubois has an angelic voice and even though Lunar Paths has a modern sound, I hear a harkening back to the 4AD period, tinges of Cocteau Twins and Dead Can Dance merged together, on the experimental edge. They are plumming the depths of your soul, evoking dreams of shores yet to be touched.




Moonsleep, is a solo female darkwave project from Shefield, UK and the 25th of November saw the release of a track called, “She Imagined Things“. This track is a part of a huge compilation put out by the label Coffin Dance, which all proceeds will go to the charity Mermaids, to help transgender youths.

The clicking beat heralds in the solemn synths and chirping electronics. Mellow and unhurried in the dream like state, wafting through your senses.

There is something hypnotic and very likeable about “She Imagined Things“. Probably the worst thing is that at 2 minutes and 45 seconds, it is over all too quickly, so you might have to put it on repeat. Moonsleep is entrancing, especially when “She Imagined Things“.

She Imagined Things | Moonsleep (bandcamp.com)


So time for another quickie. because here at Onyx, we know people love a quickie! British lads, Decommissioned Forests, have had their latest album given a polish over with a whole set of remixes. This is probably hence the title, Industry Remixes.

Most of the mixes have been done by members of the band, as Decommissioned Forests or under other project names such as Non-Bio (Howard Gardner), Raelism, History of Guns (Max Rael) and The Resonance Association (Daniel Vincent). Also they have been working on video releases for a few of these tracks, bringing life to the music visually. Duncan Perry (NNYz), Mox Salnikov and Dominic Hemy (The Resonance Association) are the guest artists that help round off the mixing duties.

I think “Spectral Kleptomania” was my favourite track before and now it just has this amazing whimsy on acid effect going on. “Triggers” gets four reworkings, from using heavy guitars, rhythmic noise, ambient tones to Remy’s disturbing but entrancing drone noise.

That is just me giving you a taste of what is in stall for you should you decide to take the plunge and delve these new depths. More to the point, there is nothing holding you back, so do it today. Immerse your ears with Decommissioned Forests’ Industry Remixes because there are a lot of jewels to be found.

Industry Remixes | Decommissioned Forests (bandcamp.com)

Decommissioned Forests | Facebook

Music | The Resonance Association (trahq.co.uk)

Music | Non-Bio (bandcamp.com)

Music | NNYz? (bandcamp.com)

Music | Misha MOX Salnikov and his projects. (bandcamp.com)

Trapped | Dominic Hemy (bandcamp.com)

Ever had The Blackwater Fever? They say it does strange things to a man but in Brisbane it happens to be a three piece, dark alternative, bluesy rock’n’roll band. Previously, we have reviewed a few singles, but as of October 27th, the new album came out containing these and so much more. Temptator! is the album and the band consists of Shane Hicks (vocals, guitar, bass, keys, percussion), Trevor Gee (drums, percussion) and Jed A Walters (bass, keys). If Jed’s name is familiar, you might have come across his other fantastic project, Chiffon Magnifique.

Some albums are hard to review. Not because they are bad….well some are, but there are others that when you listen, it kind of feels a little wrong to be taking it track by track. Instead I am going to tell you that The Blackwater Fever never leave their blue roots but they do indeed traverse a lot of styles. A mixture of imagination and soul, woven around real experiences of love, loss and betrayal.

The rock’n’roll of “Love Is Strange” about a beguiling female or the bayou slow blues of “The Hurt” are examples of burning resentment of being badly treated, smouldering and flamed by pain.

Weaving immersive stories like “Ode To Ol’ John Doe“, the dumped human remains in a body of water, just below the surface, for no one to mourn as the creatures below slowly consume them or there is the gothic stirrings of “The Highway” in a world gone mad.

And one always needs at least one track about love and lust. The dulcet Stone Temple Pilot styling, of absolute need in “My Weakness” that gets you in the throat, heavy and tangible obsession with those amazing, stirring vocals. There is so much depth within Temptator!, and The Blackwater Fever dances with dark themes that make for interesting music, melded with such passion, you might find you really do have the Fever.

Temptator! | The Blackwater Fever (bandcamp.com)

The Blackwater Fever | Dark & Moody Rock ‘n’Roll

The Blackwater Fever | Facebook

The Blackwater Fever (@theblackwaterfever) • Instagram photos and videos

No Devotion Records is based in the Mexico, Phobos Reactor are German and TFG (TONTTU) likes to normally yell at gnomes in Finland. Keeping up so far? So of course, the natural progress is to put out two tracks on imbibing alcohol rather heavily. “Kangastuksia” and “Tomaatteja” are the songs in question, which most of us would have issues saying sober. Together they are Delirium Tremens, also known medically as the DTs where the subject is having the worst form of ethanol withdrawal.

Finnish for mirages, “Kangastuksia” feels pretty real from the the wubbing beats to TFG’s howled vocals. Everything is spinning around in the possible club setting, free flowing drinks and the strobing lights in your eyes as the main character completely loses his shit.

Tomaatteja” means tomatoes and tomatoes can be squeezed of juice, so maybe Bloody Mary’s! Maybe science fiction Bloody Mary’s as the music goes for a change of pace. The electronics are lighter and free flowing whilst the vocals has become utterly anguished. It seems the hair of the dog (hangover cure) for someone has become his undoing.

Sooooo, it seems we have part one, the raucous night out getting wontingly smashed, yet again, until you are ready to up chuck (vomit) and part two, the screaming pain and nausea the next day and looking for a cure which for some is having another drink. Phobos Reactor has created a dance whirlwind in “Kangastuksia” with TFG’s fun vocalisation, while “Tomaatteja” is serene compared to the pained, gurgling rhetoric bursting forth. Remember kids, drink responsibly because the only Delirium Tremens you want to suffer is by Phobos Reactor and TFG (TONTTU).

Delirium Tremens | Phobos Reactor feat. TFG (TONTTU) | No Devotion Records (bandcamp.com)





Imagine a world where people didn’t judge each other by the colour of their skin, nationality, creed/religion, sex and sexual orientation…. we sadly don’t live in that world and it feels like it slipping further from our sight. This year saw the overturning of an important American law, Roe Vs Wade. A law that gives autonomy of a woman over her own body and her reproductive cycles. The Joy Thieves, on Armalyte Industries, have released the maxi single “6 To 3“, on the 25th of November, which happens to be International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to remind people that this is a boot on the neck of the female half of the world. There are three new tracks and seven remixes.

6 To 3” is the raising of female voices, the anger is palpable and is joined by the grating guitars and throbbing electronics. This is women forcing you to hear their grief that they are entitled to an opinion, entitled to be sexual beings, to choose for themselves and no government should be able to take that away. There is a heavy Ministry taste to the track “Property” and yes, the premise is that women are becoming simply chattels or possessions, to use and abuse, because in the end, what does it it matter if girls and women die, as long as bible bashing half wits can sleep at night. Through the use of voice clips, we have the heavy, subordinate noise of “Power Through Discipline“, the calm spoken words in complete contrast to the musical onslaught. Remixes by Stoneburner, Eva X, StabWalt and The Joy Thieves, give you more honey for your money.

Now people might say that this only applies to North America….but does it? The US is a first world country and many look to it, copying the laws and legislation. Others will see it as a chance to have power over females, pushing back hard earned rights, reducing women to simply vessels to please men and push out babies without thought for the wellbeing of the female, mental health aspects and keeping many in abject poverty. We stand in solidarity with our sisters because if it can happen there…..it can happen anywhere. All monies made are going to the National Network of Abortion Funds but more importantly, this is keeping the subject in plain view and calling it for what it really is. Slavery and child abuse. Support The Joy Thieves and amplify the message.

6 To 3 | The Joy Thieves (bandcamp.com)

The Joy Thieves



Brisbane based, gothic band, Sacred Hearts have been gaining a solid following, and released the newest single “Catholic Guilt“. The Meanjin (Brisbane) trio, however, doing something a little different. Two singles, same track but done in two different styles. Nice to see Jed A. Walters (Chiffon Magnifique) doing their production as well as the talented Kyle Hallam (Doggie Heaven) .

Whom does the bells toll for? That drum machine just pops and the guitars kind of roll in light noisy motes that drown your ears in beautiful chiming. The vocals are so vibrant and in a way angelic, amidst the churning, jangling guitars.

Version two is far more what is on the slab in the laboratory style of deathrock with those hazed out guitars. The angst oozes forward, staining the air, the vocals venomous in their disgust. The Lord’s Prayer that they have used, has become a cultish chant for the disenchanted.

I get where lead singer, June, is coming from, having been in the Catholic school system. They use the religion to scare you and control you. You are being judged, if not worthy then you will go to Hell and I remember at school, being told sex was for procreation only and not for enjoyment. Yeah, let’s not even get into the creepy stuff with the priests. At some point you either stay with that stuff or you walk away. Maybe that just added to the way we turned out but it makes for interesting conversation and, indeed, topic for a single, where Sacred Hearts are stretching those dark wings and pushing their sound into new and varied territory. I think they are only going to get better and “Catholic Guilt 1 & II” are pretty damn hot.

Catholic Guilt | Sacred Hearts (bandcamp.com)

Catholic Guilt II | Sacred Hearts (bandcamp.com)

Sacred Hearts | Facebook