Neon Tzigane are a London based duo, comprised of vocalists Howling Mina, who also handles percussion and Samson Deluxe on guitars and programming. They have released a third EP, Paramisha.

“The Lost Cities” has tried to incorporate a middle eastern sound which weaves through the song as this duo sing us a tale of civilizations gone forever beneath the shifting sands of mysterious desert climes.

You can hear the old 80’s goth wave jangly guitars on “lost without you”. Deluxe takes the reigns on this track vocally, with Mina doing a fine job backing him. This is a really good pop tune, though short, rather upbeat and quite unlike any other track on the EP.

“Nothing Is Forever” begins with a guitar riff that Pete Steele from Type O Negative would be proud of. Howling Mina and Deluxe harken back to parts of 60’s psychedelia mixed with Black Sabbath.

The last track on this EP is the title, “Paramisha” with its slow build up before the guitars chime in, laced with synths as the sound winds up. This is a purely instrumental piece, that we are confronted with, which leaves you wondering if there is more to come.

All four tracks are fairly different from each other, which isn’t always a bad thing if you like variety and hearing how a band can challenge themselves. Should be interesting to watch Neon Tzigane develop and anticipate what they will release next.

https://neontzigane.bandcamp.com/

http://open.spotify.com/album/15j4tBUh 

http://www.deezer.com/artist/55951002

Those busy lads from the north of England are back. I previously, for another publication, reviewed Auger‘s first album. Since last year, they have been making a name for themselves by touring the UK and Europe, whilst writing a new album named, From Now On I.

The newest single is a song called “Find My Own Way Out”, released on the label, darkTunes Music Group, ahead of the awaited album release.

This song is a great progressive piece of electronica/industrial with good vocals from Kyle Wilson and guitar work by Kieran Thornton. It is all nicely blended and a good strong number with a memorable chorus.

Lyrically you find a song about being pushed and let down even after putting your faith in others. In the end it’s about getting yourself out of dark places you end up dwelling in. Finding that light inside you to push forward and be the cataylst of change you need.

In a year, I can hear the difference in these guys. Their sound had matured and become much tighter which is a credit to them.

Auger have really started in earnest to cultivate a sound that is uniquely their own and it pleases me no end to say, check out these young fellas and cannot wait to hear the new album.

http://http://www.auger.band

https://www.facebook.com/AugerUK

https://www.instagram.com/auger.band

http://www.darktunes.com

https://www.darkmerch.com

http://tinyurl.com/darkTunesFB

https://twitter.com/darktunesgroup

https://www.instagram.com/darktunesmu…

https://open.spotify.com/user/darktun…

The Odyssey is a grandiose tale by the Greek writer Homer but it is also an album devised by far more modern Greeks, whom are no lest dedicated to the art of story telling in the form of Dark Awake, while Regard Extreme is the French connection in this collaboration.

So we are onwards “Towards A Long Journey” and it is slow and steady with each classical instrument getting it’s fair turn. This flows like deep water and oozes ancient charm of the mediterranean as our hero Odysseus leaves the Trojan Wars to head home to his kingdom.

“Polyphemus (A Trick Against The Cyclops)” has a gorgeous string ensemble which breaks in and out with horned instruments. You even get to hear the cyclops as the music goes from light and laid back to more intimidating, building. His enraged yells as he has been blinded in his one eye, calling on his father, Poseidon.

And so we enter the “The Land Of Laistrygones”, the seriousness is expressed which the deep menacing tones of this dirge as Odysseus and his fleet land on an island, only to find man-eating giants who hurl boulders at the unsuspecting fleet, sinking all ships bar one.

Odysseus must make the trip to see the dead and blind Theban, “Teiresias (Prophet In The Underworld)”, seeking advice. The music reflects the other worldliness and the unnatural, as the living invade the realm of the dead. This is far more electronic but suits well.

Whilst on the way back Odysseus and his men, land on an island belonging to “Circe (Metamorphosis)” who is a goddess of magic and a nymph as well as a daughter of Helios the Sun God. She turns all the crew into swine and Odysseus promises to live there for a years if she reverts the spell, which she does. The strings are hesitant and the heaviness is palpable and a single female soprano can be heard. Circe has gotten what she desired.

ody 2

The most famous part of The Odyssey is of course “The Sirens (Fascinating Song)”. Their song lures the unwary sailor onto the rocks so that all hands may drown, consumed by the sea. A lilting female vocal rises and falls like the sea swells, enchanting and mesmerizing with such clarity backed by a piano played discordantly, a foreshadowing that not is all as it seems.

A single violin and chatter herald in what sounds like giant horns announcing battle. Travelling within a confine with enemies on both sides, waiting for something to happen. “Scylla and Charybdis” literally means to have to choose between two evils. A strait of water they must travel has Scylla on one side and Charybdis on the other. Two monstrous females that consume all that come past them. Scylla with her giant toothy jaws in 6 heads or Charybdis whom acts like a whirlpool sucking all within.

Soon our adventurers make their way to “The Island Of The Sun God (Helios)” where everything is fairly nice, the beautiful Helios has a chariot to draw the sun across the sky and he has a herd of immortal cows. The music is light with female singers giving pleasant intonations. This seems a sweet reprieve from the ominous pieces previously. One dead, blind Theban seer had warned them not to eat the cattle of Helios but no, the daft crew just had to eat them, enraging Helios into asking Zeus to take vengeance.

The sounds of water dripping within a cave. “Ogygia (Calypso’s Island)” is Odysseus’ next landing alone. Here he is met by the nymph, Calypso who has fallen in love with Odysseus and wishes to marry him. He refuses and holds him there for 7 years until Zeus intervenes, then she gives him a boat supplied with food and wine. The music wends its way, wary and building and reprising like an argument but constantly writhing seeking resolve. Then it becomes stark and grey with the voice of a goddess. Is this Calypso asking to be loved? Synths make this slightly deranged feeling that lingers.

Telemachus was Odysseus’ son and his education had been left to the wise old Mentor. “Mentor (A Message From A Goddess)” is about Athena taking the guise of Mentor to instruct Telemachus to go find his father before his mother remarried. It is etherial, light and unearthly as the visitation of Athena should be. Whispers and vocal exclamations heighten this sensation of light.

Ody 1

“Ithaca (Return Of The King)” is fair self-explanatory. An unrecognizable Odysseus participates in a show of strength and then kills all the suitors. After convincing his wife it really is the King, all is set to right. Dark and brooding with almost industrial banging, maybe the impending death knell. Though it doesn’t sound like the happiest of returns but then slaughtering all your enemies is like that.

This is indeed a music interpretation of the Odyssey. Musical visualizations of important pieces of this two and a half thousand-year old poem. It is evocative and poignant. If you love neo-classical music or have a great love of the Homeric poem, then I highly suggest you check this out. They say beware of Greeks bearing gifts but in this case it’s a good one!

 

https://darkawake.bandcamp.com/album/the-odyssey?fbclid=IwAR1TCMTiY9MWU5UCD7GJ6Bkv46JDjPZDRbgktSrhz5gRiT4t4A5i7NnnuQM

https://www.facebook.com/pages/DARK-AWAKE/189786207738223

https://www.facebook.com/regardextreme/

From the online publisher, Ton Doigt Dans Mon Cul Netlabel, we have an E.P. with two artists. Building Castles Out Of Matchsticks (Anne Sulikowski) from Canada and Sean Derrick Cooper Marquardt of the USA with the rather intriguing title….Why Should I Give You The Cure, When I Can Always Give You The Treatment.

building
Building Castles Out Of Matchsticks (Anne Sulikowski)

Swirling noise with reverb pulsate cosmically, like an epic space trip into the unknown. Why unknown? Because we, as the listener, are unsure of this journey and we are here for the ride and experience.

Like twinkling stars and beating quasars, this transfixed you though sound alone. It is imagination unbound and the composer might be the alien hand guiding us.

It is hard to imagine that Sulikowski can make many of these amazing sounds on a guitar but then “Differential Diagnosis” is a 13 minutes and 42 seconds piece of electronic beauty and the only number by Building Castles Out Of Matchsticks.

 

sean
Sean Derrick Cooper Marquardt

 

 

Someone is leading a crowd in unity in “Dreamers” and so starts Sean Derrick Cooper Marquardt‘s contribution. Laid over the top is discordant piano and feedback, then it suddenly……stops.

“We Destroyed All the Mirrors and Glass Out of Fear That You Will Forget Us and Fall In Love With Yourself” could be the longest song title I have ever had to write and this is a low cacophony of sound, which when you listen you can hear drums and chanting within, like Tibetan monks and their throat music, within a storm, within a can.

Bells chime, clear and bright over a haze of noise. This is “Instant Karma” which is the segue way, even though it suddenly stops for the last piece, “Tod von Heike Klar”. Buddhist monks chant with german spoken word, not so much vying for attention but running in harmony with the chanting. You just accept the words and sutra rather trying to understand them or garner meaning.

These pieces take you on journeys to feel and hear whatever you take from them but ultimately, let it take you away to new realms.

Yes, this was released 2 years ago but then this is the whole point about music is the search for what gives you pleasure and bringing things to the broader attention.

All music on the Ton Doigt Dans Mon Cul Netlabel is for free download, so why not indulge your senses.

soundcloud.com/buildingcastles
buildingcastlesoutofmatchsticks.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/seanderrickcooper.marquardt

www.facebook.com/tondoigtdansmoncul

http://tondoigtdansmoncul.bandcamp.com/

Sometimes gothic bands try to sound far too much like previous bands because that is considered “goth”, however originally it was born out of the counter-culture of the punks and therefore extremely experimental. In some ways we have lost this genuine expression to be different and sound different.

From Chile hails the duo Humanfobia with their highly experimental style on the album Bailo con mis Pesadillas with 15 tracks in all. Mist Spectra is the female vocal while Sábila Orbe is the programmer and male vocals.

“Fantasma en la Carretera (Dance Version)” starts this off….it’s not so much dance as a hypnotic beat with Mist Spectra cooing to you. No idea what she is saying as my Spanish is non-existent and yet language has never been a barrier with music.

As is much of this album, “Adios Mundo Cruel (Cancion para Suicidarse)” is off kilter and uneasy. Haunting could be the word as they say goodbye cruel world.

Sequenced drums and bleeps gives us the feeling we aren’t quite in a chanting raising of the dead, not yet anyways on the title track “Bailo con mis Pesadillas”.

The beginning of “Vacio Hermetico” makes you think you are about to get a dance track but no and that beat recurs and grows becoming less friendly. A nightmare revisiting and maybe a portent.

Ever have a song make you think of whales? “Arboles Deshojados” sounds like the song of humpback whales, that beautiful calling out while a tape runs backwards, or so it seems.

humanfobia2
Sábila Orbe and Mist Spectra

The unnatural creaks like Diamanda Galas are reminisent in “Calles Lobregas” while “Colapso Dimensional II” is a little more etheral but still with that air of uneasiness as the tempo is always in flux.

“Mareo Lugubre” is atmospheric with its computer enhanced vocals. Orbe lends his growling vocals to “Sombre Nigromante” until we land in the “Mausoleum of Ruins” with the eerie female vocals of Spectra and electronica that warbles in and out and a pervasive fuzzy tone.

One of the longer numbers is “Chant from the Grave (with Wertredgreen)” which makes me think of Twin Peaks, with that feel that things are going backwards rather than forwards.

“Buried By Mistake” at just over a minute long is an interlude to the next song “Catalepsy”. Does this mean catatonic death like state after an epileptic fit? In fact this really was a thing and some poor suffers were put into the ground alive. This fits in to the whole buried by mistake.

We revisit “Arboles Deshojados (Atmospheric Version)” and just when you ask how could it get much more atmospheric, it sounds like we are in a pea soup fog with extra shadows thank you.

Aaaaaand lastly for all you that absolutely love the whole death and spectral show, there is a 30 second EVP done at San Fernando cemetary. If you dare, what will you hear???

Those who remember Diamanda Galas, will see much in common with Humanfobia. Theatrical and highly avant-garde though more spooky and haunted than Galas who was far more like a full on demonic ritual gone very wrong (or very right depending on your stance). Mist Spectra is far more mellow and laid back.

This is most definitely mood music and won’t be something you hear on the dance floor. It is quirky and atmospheric and will more than likely scare your normal friends but then that’s half the fun. Ghostly haunting, buried alive, the unmentionable things that inhabit the graveyard and then there is Humanfobia with Bailo con mis Pesadillas which literally means I Dance With My Nightmares.

This album is for free download on their Bandcamp site.

bandcamp: humanfobia-official.bandcamp.com
hearthis: hearthis.at/humanfobia/
facebook: www.facebook.com/humanfobia/

Mach Fox (Zwaremachine) is from the USA and Ania Tarnowska (I Ya Toyah) is also from the United States of American and they have come together to give you the single “Smile That Killed A Country”, ahead of their Code Blue Tour.

Ania has a smooth and unhurried voice, while she croons and caresses your ears, inviting you into this electronic wonderland. In opposition you have Mach Fox, with his much more earthy, gravelly tones, giving this song it’s far more gritty feel.

Smile That Killed A Country – Promo video

This is sexy and kind slow but with a constant beat. There is no distant screams but I Ya Toyah whispers and cajoles like a lover with angelic tones. With a voice like that, I can believe she might smile and kill a few people by turning their legs to jelly.

Mach Fox compliments her completely vocally as they weave between each other, almost taunting each other, seeing who can pull off the most naughty sounding lyrics. Honestly, they both do really well in that department and couples grinding and gyrating on the dancefloor, getting hot and heavy would really find this heating up their ardour.

“Smile That Killed A Country” honestly makes me think back to the laconic and iconic sounds of Portishead. There is something almost otherworldly about nice laid back electronics.

You can listen to this song on Bandcamp if I have hopefully whetted your appetite and as always please support artists if you like their music.

https://zwaremachine.bandcamp.com/

https://iyatoyah.bandcamp.com/