Anything That Gets You Through The Night - Review
After a couple of years since their debut full-length album, we're now presented with this solid sophomore release.
As in the previous work the album takes on a thematic approach of a number of tracks focusing on the album title, themes of things that get one through the night, or nightmares as the case may be. With a dozen solid pieces, this music should get any fan through the night with an excellent mix of dance-friendly beats and layers of electronics.
On this album the moving beats kick off right from the start after a few seconds of a building symphonic intro on "Beyond The Gate". We're presented with the style and sound that we've grown accustomed to in the music with a solid bassline, a beat that's more than just the techno-driven "four-on-the-floor". This track also stands out well as we're presented with guest vocals by another favorite in the scene with Reagon Jones from Iris
. This approach is no surprise and throughout the album we're presented with many of these excellent pieces that stand out amidst the saturated electronic music scene. "Lucid Dreams" is another excellent piece with all of the right elements pulled together, featuring guest female vocals from Christa Belle of Hungry Lucy
. These added bonuses provide more variety across the already dynamic track for something truly captivating. There are several other favorites that listeners have grown to love on our radio show including a definite outstanding piece "All The Time". The lyrics of the chorus are catchy and have the listener singing "all the time to come" over and over while the smooth, sort of groovy beats and bass carry things along.
One thing we've grown to enjoy with this band is the variety and quality of the music, staying away from the over-used, saturated sounds and keeping things interesting with everything from the bass compositions, the mix of beats or the dynamic use of staccato synths or bombastic, symphonic orchestrations. "In Your Sleep" is a good example of this mix and further use of more dynamics with grinding guitars and smooth vocals over the sharp synth structures and break-beats, held together with heavy pulsating bass. The dynamics go far beyond the mixture of music, but also across the tempo and intensity of various tracks. "Denial" is heavy and slow, intense but not a club track, while many other tracks lend themselves very well to the dance floor, yet are more somber in their moods and intensity, forming a kind of ironic mix of music, moods and styles. The inclusion of the instrumental piece "Capture" allows Mario to shine with his talented compositions with this piece that sounds like it's out of a movie soundtrack. As the album wraps up we're brought to two excellent pieces that form a perfect finale to the album. "Falling" starts off with an incredible mix of pulsating, bombastic electronics that slowly give way to a driving dance beat, this once again includes a catchy chorus that keeps it fun at the same time as creative and intelligent. "Capsized" is the final piece and is another favorite here on Gothic Paradise, again beginning with bombastic elements that slowly build up to the driving piece and brings the album full circle.
So there you have it, another excellent work from this duo along with their various guests that help to truly complete the album packed with plenty of great music that should please any dark-electro fans.
Enjoy The Fall - Review
This project is comprised of the duo Mario Schumacher and Frank Spinath and hail from the german electro-pop scene.
Many people will recognize the name of this group from their EP The Flight [Lux]
which was released nearly two years ago. Now we finally have the full-length album which is a sort of concept work following the protagonist who is diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BDP) and his girlfriend who is driven insane ending the nightmare by pushing him out the window... "enjoy the fall".
On that macabre note we jump right into the album and theme with "All Coordinates Are Wrong" which is a sort of eerie dark ambient piece with spoken word about the BDP diagnosis and the phrase "what if we simply fall". This leads us into the dance-friendly and emotional piece "Black Heart" which builds on all the solid EBM and electro-pop foundations of a driving beat and looped electronics with Frank's recognizable schizophrenic vocals portraying the message through the lyrics. I speak of schizophrenic vocals because it seems like at least three different vocalists appear varying between sinister half-whispers, robotic vocoding and smooth melodic vocals. This is a great mixture found on this album throughout on several of the uptempo tracks. Needless to say that this piece quickly become a favorite of mine with it's solid vocals and dance-friendly music. Other tracks along these lines include "Damage", the popular track from the EP "The Flight [Lux] (Version)" and "The Nightmare I Am".
The variety on this album is great but stays within the solid electro-pop genres with a bit of experimentation that you might find in some of the drum-n-bass or EBM bands. However, the tracks that really caught my attention besides the dance-friendly pieces already mentioned include the ballad-like pieces "Descent (Version)" with it's eerie lyrical connotations and the smooth and beautiful piece "Beauty Lies Within". This latter piece breaks the mold of the album by including some acoustic guitar in addition to the smooth electronics, somber beat and elegant smooth melodic vocals. "Chamber Six" also stands out slightly with it's bombastic orchestrations amidst the angst-ridden vocals.
The experimental pieces are nice as well and the album flows well and brings out the thematic message for an excellent work. We're finally brought to the final piece as the album ends much the same way it began with some ambient music and spoken word on "What If". Attention electro-pop fans, don't miss out on this album!