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The dynamism of this release continues with the third track called “Stella Maris” and its accordion based sounds and soft guitar tunes. “Darkness where you are” is perhaps the best track here.a melancholic trip to calm harmonic atmospheres, all of them arranged again through the excellent accordion sounds and finally its “leon spilliaret” also with harmonic elements and acoustic structures, chorus, deternminating each one of the minutes of this track. The beauty of this one is palpable and the essence of the whole releases a reality.
What Sjoberg achieves with his group is more of a chamber ambience dominated by guitars, piano, percussion and electronics. It's more Branca than it is Ra, without the bombast or flamboyance of either. It's decidedly minimalist without the trappings of Glass or Reich, but with a generous nod to Riley. Without trying to sound too starry-eyed, it simply is. Anyone with an interest in subtle sonic details (difference tones, timbral minutiae) can catch my drift. Some of the more obvious aspects of the compositions, however, are not quite as engaging and are borderline new age (a dubious term at best).
The first two albums up to this point have been released as a trilogy, VioLution obviously being the ending of this apocalypse-themed massacre. This release also has a notable few guest appearances in the industrial bands...
The eight tracks of Vae Victus are really enjoyable. From the one minute 'Decree' to 'The Fall Of Capitalism', the music incorporates a lot of samples, background noises and martial drumming. The samples are obviously taken from communist countries, and the combination with martial industrial is very enjoyably. Standout tracks are 'The Red Guards', which incorporates children singing and accordeon, and 'Kowtow To Chairman Mao', due to the relentless continuation of the vocal samples merged with martial drums.
Blatant low-fi mono radio taps recorded with the effect of being underwater rustle in bubbles, with the rapid Morse code hammered as if from some coffin of a submarine. Leaping out of this ambience is the unexpected barf of swollen, warm splatter noising the insides before the patterns of finger-hope rap.
I am completely unfamiliar with either Val Denham or Oli Novadnieks. Raw Powder is their newest combined release; recorded in 2006, it was released this year by http://www.blossomingnoise.com/ Blossoming Noise records. The 23 tracks presented on Raw Powder express a wide range of influences from 60s, progressive, experimental, alternative, and modern rock; folk, and just about anything in between. With so many songs and such a variety in the approach to song writing, Denham and Novadnieks have definitely not held back in the expression of their vision of a new pseudo rock style.
However, it became obvious throughout the song and the very dynamic harmonies in the short-term melodies in the chorus that this wasn't some ordinary "-core" album. I also must admit that one of the most powerful lyrical verses that I have ever heard in my entire life came in this track right before the chorus. At the end. GB Trainwreck ended up being one of the most amazing pieces of music to come out of this genre from any band I have heard. In fact, I must give that track the top notch spot for best track in this vein. It completely ended up "pwning" me and I had it on repeat for at least 5 spins before moving on to the instrumental.
The album comes as a DVD jewel case with inlay and booklet. It's beautifully made, very dark on the inside, and a red/brown colorscheme on the outside. The whole design breaths an atmosphere of deeply rooted traditions. And that is exactly what Valley Lord is about; music to stories of the Georgian mythology. Wonderful dark music, subtle but at times also very intense. This is the kind of music that can go unnoticed, but leave a gap when its ended. But it's also the kind of music that can leave you listening to sweet silence afterwards. It can serve as moodsetting background music, but also deserves to be listened to intensely, preferably on an as good as possible soundsystem, and not too soft.
Dark Orchestral Ambient / Atmospheric Neoclassical
Although this is Valravn's first full length, the musicians are not new to music. They played together for years now already, under the moniker Virelai. The difference between the bands lies in the music they play. Virelai plays more from a traditional folk perspective, while Valravn combines folk with present day technology. During the gig, they presented their laptop as an instrument.