Review: Vox Populi!'s cult and highly sought after debut LP is finally reissued here after 30 years. Recorded after their first single - Ectoplasmies (1983) - between 1984 and 1985, the original band of Mitra and her (then) 14 year old brother Arash and Axel Kyrou, evolved from 2 early cassettes and the 7"s' rudimentary, idiosyncratic and improvisational structures to more cohesive edges.
Living together, but with no formal music education, the nature of the disparate elements led to a sparseness of the recordings. Influenced by his mother, the concrete music pioneer, Mireille Kyrou and her work at GRM (State Institute for Musical Research), Axel challenged his creativity by utilising their Vox Man studio as an instrument.
Building on minimal synth, rhythm box, hand percussion and Persian poetry, they experimented with tape manipulation - layering the music with forward, backward and echo simultaneously - creating a leap in the band's development.
The dark nature Myscitismes was reflected in their increasing interest in industrial and ethnic music, with a great fascination for the religious traditional music of Tibet. Ceremonial, gothic, drone-folk, the progression is apparent; onward perceptions.
Review: Mannequin and Platform 23 Records reissue what is considered to many the most complete album by perennial anarcho-outsiders Bourbonese Qualk.
The last recorded album at their South London squat, The Ambulance Station on the Old Kent Road, and again released on their own Recloose Organisation, saw the band develop further beyond the limits of the post-punk / industrial scene where genres increasingly became redundant.
Ethno, jazz, funk and EBM are all buried deep in the album as it seeks independence. The title, a critique of the Labour movements ineffective and limited call to arms against the prevailing Thatcherism of the mid-80s, encapsulates this wider oeuvre.
From opening Return To Order, the acoustic gloom is offset by tight musicianship and countering melody. The switch of Outcry precedes psychedelic anthem, Boggy Creek, with its VU remembrance. Blighted pulses Confrontation, Xenophobia, Backlash and closer, Insurrection, sense the darkness, but the ground has shifted forwards with the legendary 1.51 minutes of man'n' machine that is Lies, the enwrapping symphonic dub vocal of Born Left Hearted and incongruously pretty, Is It As It Was?
At times, suffocating, uncomfortable, at others light appears as history progresses. Preparing For Power is BQ at their most uncompromising and essential.
Brotherhood (Of The Misunderstood) (feat Autarkic)
Udibaby (feat Beatfoot)
Review: 2020 marks the tenth of collaboration for Red Axes, the Tel Aviv-based duo of Dori Sadovnik and Niv Arzi. Informed by post-punk, new wave, and a plethora of club sounds old and new, they have cleaved a singular path with their hefty discography. To celebrate their anniversary, they reunite with Dark Entries for an eponymous 11 track LP brimming with jagged guitars, spacy arpeggios, and hypnotic vocals. Although Sadovnik and Arzi have previously released LPs on I'm A Cliche and Garzen Records, Red Axes is their first effort written and conceived of as an album-length listening experience. This work flows effortlessly through a variety of stylistic detours, highlighting their ears as both keen listeners and skilled DJs. Opener 'They Game' is a grooving number that unifies the psychedelia of cosmic disco with the early 90s 'baggy' sound. The energy mounts further with "Shelera", a guitar-driven acidic banger, and "Sticks and Stones", a certifiable club hit fueled by sassy vocals courtesy of Adi Bronicki. Launching Side B is "Break the Limit", an EBM-laced number that wouldn't sound out of place on a Razormaid compilation. The following tracks wax moodier, with "Brotherhood (Of the Misunderstanding)" touching on darkwave territory. "Udibaby" and "Arpman" close out the album with their respectively dense and sparse takes on kosmische lysergia. Red Axes was mixed by Steve Dub and mastered by George Horn at Fantasy Studios. The album's artwork starkly depicts the project's name in blood-red smear. Also included is a postcard with full credits and album art. It's rare one finds an album that so casually challenges classification while still being firmly rooted on the dancefloor.