DOOM OVER LEIPZIG 2017

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Picture by UT Connewitz photo crew and Alexander Klego.

The Doom Over Leipzig is a German festival running at the end of April at the picturesque cinema UT Connewitz. The gathering aims to collect the best outcoming projects of extreme and experimental music, such as black metal, noise, drone, doom, sludge and ambient. On this year’s edition, bands likes Suma, Oranssi Pazuzu and Wolves in the Throne Room played into this two-days event. Here below some of the sounds.

NOISEPOP ALBUM OF 2017

One of the thing I like to read on Internet at the end of the year are the the lists of the best (or worst) albums related to a particular genre or topic. I like it because they say a lot about which kind of music the public is listening, or which concepts are becoming “cool” of “fashion”. It permits me to understand which direction a particular wave is evolving and if I like it or not. As I believe people who read this webzine know, music is interesting because is changing and is reflecting somehow the development of the world around us.

I found this nice list of the best independent Noise pop album on the Shoegazer Alive 9‘s blog. I quite agree with the author of the post, however I would like to give my personal priorities and comments about the albums below. From the fifth to the first (the best) album of independent Noise pop in 2017.

5. Las Robertas – Waves of the New

Las Robertas is a female-fronted band from Costa Rica. In the Waves of the New you can fill chill out vibes and feeling the warm breeze of the beach:

4. When Nalda Became Punk – Those Words Broke Our Hearts

Female voices mixed with a slow happy and colorful punk. Not for mistake the band is called When Nalda Became Punk. No worries, no anger, just a linear tempo and a quiet easy guitar line.

3. Hollow Mask – Survive in Disguise

Hollow Mask is a raw lo-fi duo from Bristol. They stick to few good ideas, without loosing themselves in useless riffs. Minimalists.

2. Fun With Ether – Tanned Skin, Light Eyes

Shoegaze atmosphere into this Tanned Skin, Light Eyes, but we don’t miss some roughness moments into this ethereal sound.

1.SWAY – Michael Phelps Of The Ocean & Planet Earth

Only project on the list with a male voice on the microphone, SWAY is bringing us into a world of eternal sunshine and positive mindset.

Are there any other album that should be counted into the list? Write a comment below.

LEPROUS | Malina

Leprous are here, finally. It was a long time I was waiting something new from them, and to be honest I was quite frustrated, since I saw them 2-3 times after a long time that the promotional tour of The Congregation was done. But this year, while I was participating at the BeProg!MyFriend in Barcelona, I heard from the first time From the Flames and I realized from the advertisement that – yes – is finally the time.

 

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Malina is a almost full hour of Leprous style. Thumbs up for Bonneville, that has to do the hardest thing to involve the listener to the rest of the work. We can discuss about the risky idea of start with a peaceful atmosphere, instead to – let’s say – launch the bomb with a very rhythmic and powerful piece, but I like reckless idea. This song is so soft and dreamful, that it detaches from the rest of the album. Something to notice, the reprise of Echo at the end of the song.

I am quite surprised how mature and professional became this band, without losing passion and creativity.

Particular mention is From the Flames, first single of the album. I would like to take this song as a representation of Malina; I am quite surprise how mature and professional became this band, without losing passion and creativity. I consider Leprous one of the best band of our era, and pieces as From the Flames just highlight this assumption: a tension that always increase during the succession of the refrains, kept under control by the exquisite tempo of the verses.

To be honest, I think that an album as Malina could have released much more time early, since we do not see real original change in the composition; however, we can see that Leprous once again exceeded our expectations and gave us something to go to see live for another couple of years.

36 | Black Soma

The Underground panorama is full of good artists, I believe the people read these pages already know. That is why I try with Pandemia to bring the most inspiring and well-created music on a stage, and of course I am doing it just following my personal taste. This does not mean that Pandemia is covering all the good music forgotten by mainstream channels, but it still is giving some of them another chance to shine.

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Speaking about shining, Black Soma musically glows. It is quite funny in my opinion that Dennis Huddleston, the creator of the 36’s project, is using the word black in the name of each track of the album. When you listen to his music you can literally see an explosion of colors moving under the eyelids, mixing to each other in a never ending dance.

Black Soma is melancholic, but at the same time full of hope.

After 8 years of production under 36 project Dennis wanted to create something based on real slow sound-enriched loops as another definition of his ambient. There are no pre-defined rules in his projects, and he constantly shows it do it a meaningful music. Song after song, Black Soma gives a sense of peace, leading into a deep space meditation into slow opening dark note and echoing melody. Melancholic, but at the same time full of hope.

Personally I consider music as a vehicle of messages and perception. Music creates feelings, and when it does not, is just a good hands-on exercise. In this case, 36 shows that melody can create different perceptions in your mind, not even following the standard structure of a song but just composing by following its creativity.

NOISE TERROR IX

In the common sense noise is correlated negatively with the word music. If this one is considered an organization of particular sound (with a certain timber, frequency, or highness), the noise is difficult to catalogue, and almost all the time is generated casually, by error. That’s why the new artists that manipulate it are quite pioneers in what they do: as humans we always try to dominate the elements and put them under our control, but what about if, for once, we are just viewers of what is simply happening?

Here is a selection of artists that play with distortion.

CRYO CHAMBER

We are always curious about how the artists realize their music, what they think about it or – more in general – how they see the world around us, and why they decide to express it. The point is, they are not the only that do this job. We always forget about the  people that, with their passion, search the best music projects around, they support them and they share it in the best way they can, often without receive anything back. These people work as booking agents but also as owner of distribution channels or labels.

Let’s start then with a series of interviews of some of these people, to see which is their point of view and why they put efforts and space on their channel for music they believe should be share with the rest of the world. First one on the list is Cryo Chamber, a label found by Simon Heath, mind of the dark ambient project Atrium Carceri.

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Let’s start from the beginning. It was 2011 and the label of your solo project, Atrium Carceri, was not able to support you anymore and you had the idea of Cryo Chamber. Creating something like this requires some efforts, so I would like to ask if you searched an alternative label before, or did you just feel the urgency to have a label that reflected exactly the purpose of your music?

I was a bit tired of the shock value focus that was so common in my scene, so I searched for a creative space with like minded artists where we could focus on the atmospheric instead. The answer was to start it myself, a label where artists could work together by helping each other with creative and technological hurdles and to interweave parts of our mythoses between projects.

You describe your label as Cinematic Dark Ambient. Can you explain what means to you this definition, and which role you believe has this type of music in the industry? Which meaning, or message, has for its public?

It’s based on an idea of soundtracks to unwritten movies. The concept and narrative has center stage in this music, unlike other genres we aren’t expressing ourselves so much as creating soundscapes that are meant to move the listeners by it’s immersive quality and atmospheric focus alone. We plan in advance a lot on how to structure scenes and write the narrative for the scenes within the music so we end up more as directors than actors, or composers more than instrumentalists. Questions that arise in the studio makes this separation obvious. What do the sounds represent in the sonic space? What is a passage telling us about the environment? What is the narrative within a scene?

“We believe it to be the future of not only our scene, but the music industry as a Whole”. In particular, which kind of dynamics do you see in the music industry for the future, especially for the underground one?

I think that depends a lot on how the economy of the internet moves forward and if we lose net neutrality. Big media networks will always strive for a monopoly, the music industry is no different.

We are in the digitization Era and Internet heavily modified our music fruition. Does it make any sense to put energy in an old-fashioned institution as a label, especially when profit are limited?

For most creative work profits as a bonus instead of as a primary goal tends to work out better in the long run.

The music of your label is quite epic and ritualistic, and influences from soundtracks are easily found. What do you really like about this sound?  Do you think that in the future can be abandoned by your label in favor of other proposals/genres , or it will be simple integrated in a bigger picture?

Most of us artists on the label are huge movie buffs and avid OST collectors and listeners, so influences from soundtracks are definitely big. Personally I like the idea of building other worlds brick by brick, I’ve been doing it all my life. Scribbling in notebooks, building mythoses, writing down lucid dreams or psychedelic trip reports. The label sound has kept growing towards the fringes for awhile so stay tuned to see what’s around the next corner.