Reviews

Hekate – Hambach / 1848

Rather onconventional, this mini LP by Hekate , and that for a new band, released on their own label in 1999. The package is special: a wooden plate with etchings accompanies a white vinyl 10″ and a nice booklet…

Winterkälte – Progressive

When I first heard this 4-track maxi some years ago I was completely blown away. At that time Winterkälte wasn’t at the top of the rhythmic industrial scene yet, this was one of their first releases (from 1997) and it was also my first encounter with the Hands label. I bought it when I was impressed by the show of this German powernoise duo at the first Maschinenfest, I think it was in 1998…

Current 93 – Immortal Bird

Splendid track from Current 93 taken from the “Sleep has his house” album. A slow waltz, dreamlike and captivating, one of my all-time favourite songs of David Tibet and co. On the B-side of this nice red vinyl single another beautiful song: ‘Crippled Fish’ by troubadour Anthony and his Johnsons. Highly romantic, sentimental music, with some nice strings and Anthony’s distinct way of crooning.

Lux Interna – Truth and beauty and all their severity

These five tracks were originally released as a demo, but Eis & Licht considered them to be good enough to give them a proper release. This is my first acquintance with Lux Interna, and I’m not disappointed. The high expectations raised by their label, by comparing them to Backworld or Of the Wand & the Moon, can not be fulfilled, but I wasn’t suprised by that…

V/A – Wo die wilde Kerle wohnen

Rather strange item, this vinyl single. Four different bands are presented here, each with one track. The cover and the title make sure you can’t take this too seriously. The cover is not very informative, on the back you can only read ‘Rauhnacht 01’. On the vinyl itself you can find the bandnames, but no songtitles and you can decide for yourself which is side ‘A’ and which is ‘B’….

Of the Wand and the Moon – I crave for you / In a robe of fire

Two of the best tracks from Of the Wand… are present on this single in new versions, reason enough for me to buy it. In a robe of fire is one of the highlights of the recent :emptiness:emptiness:emptiness: album; this version is more sober, without the violin of Matt Howden and the sounds of a fireplace, but the composition is great, so it stays upright…

V/A – The Pact 2: … of the Gods

A few years after part I now comes the sequel of this interesting compilation, released by Tesco. This album is mostly filled with top neo-folk bands, and was compiled by Ian Read (Fire & Ice) and Michael Moynihan (Blood Axis), with some unreleased songs on it. After a short intro by Willam Burroughs (‘is this machine recording?’) an acoustic song from veterans Changes follows…

Orplid – Barbarossa

Neue Deutsche Folklore! This 10″ has a title with historical connotations. Barbarossa was the nickname of the red-bearded emperor Frederik I, Operation Barbarossa was the name of the invasion of Russia by the Germans in WII. With this new 10″ Orplid sets foot on new, more electronic territory. Side A contains the title track ‘Barbarossa’, consisting of three parts…

V/A – Solaris Collaboration

After the magnificent double cd “Omnon” (see older review) by Polygon comes another splendid release from Polymorph records. The recipe is comparable: the release comes in a very special, luxurious package, a large format paper gatefold sleeve with insert sheet, the music is ambient of the highest standard, that follows the line of ‘Omnon”…

Orplid – Das Schicksal

Five songs from this new stars on the German neo-folk front, who made such an impression with their self-titled album. This was the first vinyl release by Eis & Licht, a small label, whose releases are often vinyl only (mostly on 10″) and very limited, and that has a good ear for new neo-folk bands…

V/A – Voltage II: electronic vivisection

Not everyone knows that Johan van Roy (Suicide Commando) has an own label, called COde Products. As you could expect, this label focuses mainly on dark electro sounds. Until recently Code only released tapes, from bands/projects like Frames a Second, Lescure 13 and Stin Scatzor…

Ostara – Never weep / Overworld

A beautiful picture disc in a series of 7″ singles released by World Serpent. Two new songs from this English neo-folk formation, who continue in the poppy style they featured on their album ‘Secret Homeland”. Great melodies, nice singing, and songs that remain in your head for some time. Overworld is a beautiful folksong, with piano and strings, Never Weep has more of a 80’s feel to it…

Belborn – Seelenruhe / Phoenix

This new German band already impressed me with its debut album. Now there is a single from Belborn with two new excellent tracks, following the line of that album, folk with some wave influences, acoustic guitar with synthesizer. I like the song ‘Seelenruhe’ the most, a romantic piece about “flammende Seelen und brennende Schmerzen”…

Ostara – Operation Valkyrie

A one-sided single, I think I did not posses such an item yet. The one track on this 7″ from Ostara is the well-known and excellent ‘Operation Valkyrie’, the ‘hit’ on their album “Secret Homeland”. So, no new material here, only a nice picture disc. Conclusion: for fans and collectors only. And don’t try to play the ’empty’ side, as I did the first time by accident. Your needle won’t dig it…

V/A – Bringing Light and Darkness

This compilation LP (limited to 300 copies) was released as a souvenir to the Trio Noir/Of the Wand and the Moon concert in Copenhagen, February 2001, organised by Bragagild…

Camerata Mediolanense and Pavor Nocturnus – L’Alfière

Two Italian bands can be found on this 10″ released by Eis & Licht, both with two tracks. The record comes with a really wonderful insert sheet. On side A, the well-known medieval formation Camerata Mediolanense brings us a 10 minute long version of L’Homme Armé, one of the best songs on their repertoire…

Darkwood – Talons

After two rather different albums, one mostly with neo-folk, the other with industrial/ambient, I was curious what the German band Darkwood would offer us on this single. Well, two good songs in any way. On side A a slow song with nice female vocals, called ‘Ferocity’. The B-side, ‘Fatherland’, is an instrumental tune with piano and fierce drumming…

Death in June – We said destroy / Fire & Ice – The unquiet grave

Douglas P and Ian Read on one single! The single comes in a nice hardcover sleeve and is signed by both legends. Death in June offers us an experimental version track called ‘We said destroy’. It does not resemble their classic track of that name at all, it is noisy and very chaotic, getting very loud toward the end, not so easy to digest…

Allerseelen – Alle Lust will Ewigkeit / Traumlied

Two songs from Allerseelen that can also be found on the “The Nitha Fields” compilation cd. This single is dedicated to Leni Riefenstahl, whose portrait is on the cover, taken from the film ‘Das Blaue Licht’, in which she played in 1932. On the back other film stills can be found. The vinyl itself has […]

Dies Natalis – Raunen

The debut of a new talented German neo-folk band, with 3 songs on a 10″, released by Eis & Licht. The openings song, ‘Rain’, sounds heroic and goves you the urge to sing along. Then comes ‘Deine hand zu halten’, a nice melancholic song of which the text is printed on the insert sleeve. Side B is reserved for one long, desperate romantic piece called ‘We Stand’, about a lost love…