Monday, June 30, 2014

5 artists you should check out



Otto's Daughter
Arc of a Dream by Otto's Daughter


Sixth June

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Office Playlist of the Week

It's that time again, another work week. Gotta figure out what I want to listen to at work this week. Fortunately after Pridefest, I stopped over at the library and picked up some music to take to work.

Gospel Gosspip: Gospel Gossip

Fort Wilson Riot: Trilliun


Arch Enemy: War Eternal

Mankind is Obsolete: Mobius Loop

Aphex Twin: Selected Ambient Works '82-92

Xandria: Sacrificium

Ellie Goulding: Halcyon

Tori Amos: Boys for Pele

Amaranthe: The Nexus

Uh Huh Her: Future Souls

Chelsea Wolfe: Pain is Beauty

Anette Olzon: Shine

Delerium: Poem

Lindsey Stirling: Shatter Me

Hooverphonic: The Magnificent Tree

Ashbury Heights: Three Cheers for the Newlydead

Curve: Cuckoo

Mondtraume: Empty

Friday, June 27, 2014

Albums I am currently listening to

Linea Aspera by Linea Aspera

Unfortunately this band is no longer together but their music lives on forever. If you like '80s new wave music, you would totally dig Linea Aspera's self-titled album.

The Girl and The Robot: Whole/Flowers

I have been listening to The Girl and The Robot's music for most of this music. I was going through one of my youtube playlists and saw that I had a video from them on it. After re-discovering the German electropop duo, I started to listen to their music as much as possible. I really dig their two EP's Silence/Borderline and Whole/Flowers. Their full length album The Beauty of Decay was only so-so. I think the band is no longer around. Their website no longer exists and the last time they posted on FB was a year ago. Damn shame if that is the case because I think they are really good.

The Girl and The Robot: Silence/Borderline

I loved both The Girl and The Robot EPs so much I wound up ordering copies of them from POPoNaut.

Psyborg Corp: The Frozen Shrines of Obsydyana

After a four year wait, Psyborg Corp finally released their follow up to The Mechanical Renaissance, one of my favorite aggrotech albums in recent years. Their new album did not disappoint me. The vocals are different though and by that I mean is that they are clean instead of harsh. As different as the vocals sounds, I dig them. The beats on the album are tight. Very club-friendly.

Marsheaux: Odyssey

Still enjoying the hell out of the best of compilation from one of my favorite bands in the past few years.

Delerium: Poem

I recently had to buy another copy of my personal favorite Delerium album after I discovered how shitty my previous copy sounded (i.e it kept skipping). After 14 years since it was release, the album still sounds amazing to me. This remains to be my personal favorite album by Delerium to this very day.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Throwback Thursday: The Bangles with Half Demon Dolls at The Fine LIne 2011

I thought for Throwback Thursday, I would post a slide show of my pictures from the last time The Bangles performed in the Twin Cities which was three years ago at the Fine Line. Opening act was local band Half Demon Dolls. Despite the ridiculous rules of only taking three pictures during the show and my negative experience with a bouncer at the show (had no issues with the bouncer during for the opening act but when it came to The Bangles, I had some asshole up my grill about me taking pictures and I only was on my third picture with my digital camerabut yet there were other people who were far worse than me who got away with murder so to speak). Still I wish Michael Steele hadn't retired. I would have loved to have seen her with the band. Oh well. I was happy to see one of my favorite bands from my youth in concert finally.

goth_maven's The Bangles with Half Demon Dolls album on Photobucket

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Music that I have bought this year so far

Last night I was listening to the Silence/Borderline and Whole/Flowers EPs by the German electropop band The Girl and The Robot. Of course I tried to find hard copies of them online last night but couldn't. Thankfully today I did on POPoNAUT's website (which is a great site to go for really hard to find albums like the EPs I just bought and the first Moonlight Cove album) and of course ordered them. This quickly inspired tonight's blog which is a list of albums and EPs that I have bought so far this year.

Aby Wolf: Wolf Lords
Amanda Ghost: Ghost Stories
Amaranthe: The Nexus
Anette Olzon: Shine
Arch Enemy: War Eternal
Army On the Dance Floor: Many Faces of War
Astronomique: Burning Stars EP
BAAL: Shurado
Belinda Carlisle: The Collection
Blutengel: Black Symphonies
Chelsea Wolfe: Pain is Beauty
Client: Authority
Delerium: Poem (I had to buy a new copy because the one I had sounded like shit)
Depeche Mode: Black Celebration
Depeche Mode: Ultra
Dum Dum Girls: Too True
Dum Dum Girls: Only In Dreams
Feathers: If All Now Here
Foretaste: Love On Demand
Fort Wilson Riot: Trilliun
God Destruction: Novus Ordo Seclorum
God Module: False Face
Goldfrapp: Supernature
Icona Pop: This Is...
Lindsey Stirling: Shatter Me
Lucid Living: Miracless
Lullacry: Crucify My Heart
Machinista: Arizona Lights
Mankind is Obsolete: Mobius Loop
Marsheaux: Odyssey
Mondtraume: Empty
My Midnight Heart: Chest of Hearts
Nightwish: Oceanborn
Nitro/Noise: No Cure For Apocalypse
Panic Lift: Is This Goodbye?
Phantogram: Voices
Psyborg Corp: the Frozen Shrines of Obsydyana
Schoolcraft: Rushing Through the Sky
Sirus: Broken Hearts Corporate Minds
Stoneburners: Songs in the Key of Arrakis
Surgyn: Envy
The Girl and The Robot: Silence/Borderline EP
The Girl and The Robot: Whole/Flowers EP
The Luna Sequence: Fearful Shepherds Hunt Their Sheep
The Melismatics: Rising Tide
Uh Huh Her: Future Souls
Veruca Salt: Eight Arms To Hold You
Within Temptation: Hydra

And to think, this is just from January to June of this year. LOL! I'm such a music junkie.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

System Syn: Daydream From a Deathbed

If you haven't seen it by now, System Syn just released a new music video for the song "Daydream From a Deathbed". Check it out!

Monday, June 23, 2014

5 artists you should check out

01. 3 Teeth

02. Army On the Dancefloor

03. Avarice in Audio


05. Necropsyk

Sunday, June 22, 2014

How I have spent my last four years

So here it 1000th blog entry. Plus this month it is my 4th anniversary of being the lone mastermind of this blog. I am rather in awe that this blog have lasted as long as it has because I had blogs where I lost interest in it within a matter of months. To be honest, I didn't really have any long term plans for this blog or had any clues on where I wanted to take this blog but thanks to the countless concerts I have attended (mostly shows from Kilted Farmer Koncerts ) and interacted with many musicians, I eventually figured out what direction I wanted to take this blog to which is basically show support for the local and national dark underground music scene.

I thought in honor of my 4th anniversary/1000th blog entry, I would share with my readers 100 of my favorite bands/albums/songs that I have been enjoying since I started writing this blog. In 2010, my taste in music was mostly what everyone else in the scene was listening to which were bands signed to Metropolis Records, Alfa Matrix Records, and Out of Line Records. Now? I find myself wanting to broaden my horizons and search for artists and bands that would appeal to me but don't have the luxury or perhaps chose to operate on an independent level that doesn't get heard as much in clubs around the world. Thanks to social media websites like Twitter, and streaming sites like Sound Cloud, bandcamp, and Spotify, discovering new music has gotten easier for me. Without further ado, here is a 100 of my favorite things about music from the past four years :).

P.S...I had to not include some of my long time favorite bands like Cylab, Blutengel, Sensuous Enemy, Ayria, Ashbury Heights, Kirlian Camera, and VNV Nation except for the last list because I had been listening to them prior to 2010.

25 Favorite Local Acts
Absynthe of Faith
Brute Heart
Dance Assault
Fate's Palette
Fort Wilson Riot
Gabriel and The Apocalypse
Gospel Gossip
The Melismastics
The Rope
Thought Thieves

25 Favorite Discoveries (found via internet)
Army on the Dance Floor
Avarice in Audio
Fort Wilson Riot
Future Perfect
God Destruction
Lucid Living
Moonlight Cove
Mr. Kitty
Noblesse Oblige
Rave the Reqviem
The Bellwether Syndicate
The Luna Sequence
Waves Under Water

25 Favorite Artists (from the past four years)
Army On the Dance Floor
Avarice in Audio
Carved Souls
Chelsea Wolfe
Cosmic Armchair
Die Braut
Dum Dum Girls
For All the Emptiness
Future Perfect
Lucid Living
Merging Moon
Moonlight Cove
My Midnight Heart
Noblesse Oblige
The Break Up

*This particular list was difficult for me because there were so many great bands like The Foreign Resort, Gospel Gossip, Parralox, Mr. Kitty, and countless others that had to be excluded. I have found some really excellent new bands over the last few years courtesy of social media. Right now Bandcamp is my place to find new artists.

25 Favorite Songs (from the past four years)
Refuge by Client
Nightglory by Kirlian Camera
Land of the Innocent by Feathers
Runaway by Noblesse Oblige
Far From Pain by Mondtraume
Frostbite by Avarice in Audio
Our Common Future by Psy'Aviah
Nightlight by My Midnight Heart
Leia by Army on the Dance Floor
The Fall by Unter Null
Marching of the Days by Cosmic Armchair
Summer by Marsheaux
Smile of Low by Midnight Cove
Escape by Future Perfect
When Heart Forgives by Nadina
Call Your Girlfriend by Robyn
Morphine by Javelynn
Barrio Gotico by Corde Oblique
Borderline by the Girl and the Robot
Dance in the Graveyard by Delta Rae
Uber Den Horizont by Blutengel
Space and Time by VNV Nation
Miss You by Parralox
Skin by Cylab
Intentions by Sensuous Enemy

It is amazing how much my taste in music has evolved in the past few years. I am digging more of the harsher side of EBM like Amduscia, Die Braut, and God Destruction. On the non-goth/industrial side, I have enjoying the sounds of Dum Dum Girls, Phantogram, and Uh Huh Her. I find myself branching out of the dark underground scene and into the indie rock/electro-pop territory. So far my 2 very favorite concerts that I have seen this year has been the Dum Dum Girls and Phantogram. Despite the venues being packed with annoying hipsters, I really found myself enjoying those shows in particular. As for the local scene, I wasn't even big on the local music scene for a long time but having seen it grow and evolve in the past few years, I can now say I was wrong about it. The Twin Cities still has a small goth/industrial scene but I  like that intimate feel. Everyone knows everyone or at least knows who he or she is. Hell! I even been recognized at shows for my work here. So here is to the next 1000 blog entries :).  

Friday, June 20, 2014

Some Food for Thoughts: Rape, and taking lyrics too literally?

As much as I love the goth/industrial scene, I also feel like I am reliving high school except I am much older and a lot less tolerant of bullshit. I say this because this morning (and thanks to the band Italian EBM band XP some major shit going down involving Faderhead and the topic of rape. This letter to Faderhead explains it all. My initial reaction was that my started eyes rolling and I heard myself muttering out loud "good grief". Then I decided to do a little investigating behind Faderhead's song before making a final judgement.

Here is a link for the song Self-Control.

I will start off with saying that yes I am a feminist and yes I dislike the current attitudes towards the subject of rape and women in general. As someone who observes the goth/industrial scene from the quiet confines of one's living room at her desk as well as concerts, I personally have never experienced any forms of misogyny or sexism in the scene nor do I see that from the music I listen to. In the case of Faderhead's song "Self-Control", I see nothing in the lyrics that proves that the author claims to be right. Faderhead does not mention of forcing himself sexually on a girl or imply that he is going to do it. My final judgement? The author read too much into the lyrics and misinterpreted them to be condoning the act of rape. People really do need to learn to the concept of critical thinking and get a sense of humor. All I saw and heard in the Faderhead song is a cheesy clubbanger for rivetheads. I'll admit I am not a Faderhead fan so it is a moot point to accuse me of being biased with this latest op'd piece from me. I just can't get into his music (I prefer the harsher side of EBM or synthpop) however in a situation like this latest internet drama, the claim that his song "Self-Control" promotes rape is so dumb, Faderhead deserves to have his reputation defended. From what little of his music I have heard, his lyrics are not meant to be taken seriously (as are Combichrist, another band accuse of misogyny over the years). Like I said in the beginning of this paragraph, I am a feminist and I strongly dislike misogyny and rape but from the years I have been listening to goth and industrial music and attending concerts (and often meeting musicians), I have not experienced any negative encounters at the shows I go to. The musicians I have met have like the guys in Combichrist have been extremely kind and patient with enthusiastic fans like myself, and the male concertgoers at the shows I attend extremely gracious and polite. This sort of drama shit in our scene that happens online drives me up the wall. I am so over high school.

P.S...If you really want to see song lyrics that does promote rape, just check out this link to the Smoking Gun article on overlooked rape lyrics. They are absolutely disgusting. These sort of lyrics in rap music is why I have such a strong negative reaction to the genre. So before jumping the gun on an artist like Faderhead about his lyrics, there is so much worse lyrics in other musical genres. All it takes is using a search engine. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Albums of the Week

Normally for my Album of the Week weekly series,I focus on one album but this week is going to be different. I decided to do two albums because I couldn't pick one over the other. LOL! So for this week's Albums Of The Week, I have chosen Arch Enemy's War Eternal and Marsheaux's Odyssey albums.

Arch Enemy: War Eternal

I bought the new Arch Enemy album last week on my day off from work. I have been listening to it a lot since then. I am really enjoying their new singer Alissa White-Gluz. I don't think the band's previous singer Angela Gossow would have picked just anyone to fill her shoes. I personally think Alissa has proven to be a worthy successor. As for the album itself, I love it especially the title track. I personally think it is a top notch metal album and definitely one of my favorite releases of 2014. It's funny, a few years ago I wasn't big on Arch Enemy or the whole death metal sound but now I absolutely love Arch Enemy. I became a fan when I bought Khaos Legions a few years ago. I suppose because of all the aggrotech/harsh EBM I listen to on a regular basis, I now can handle the harsh death metal vocals.

Marsheaux: Odyssey

This week I bought online the new best of compilation album Odyssey by one of my favorite electropop bands Marsheaux. I absolutely freaking love it. I only own a couple of their albums Inhale and Lumineux Noir. There are songs on the best of collection that I don't have in my cd collection so this album totally helps me out with that slight issue ;). I still plan on buying their other albums but in the meantime Odyssey will do. I certainly would recommend buying this album for new fans. My personal favorite song on the album is "Full Attack", a new song written for the album. It is addictively catchy. I also love their version of "Pop Corn". I currently have that song stuck in my head thanks to the women ;). Do I wish they included more songs on the album? Yes, maybe for a greatest hits package later down the road but overall Odyssey is a great compilation and well worth the money.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

5 artists/bands you should check out

01. My Midnight Heart

I saw this band at the Tegan and Sara concert the other night. I absolutely loved their set. Since I didn't get to stop by the merch table to see the band, I ended up downloading their EP Chest of Hearts which I have been playing non-stop. Angelica Allen shows a lot of promise with this project. When I was at the show I could have sworn I was hearing Mariah Carey when she was not hitting those high notes. While there certainly is a hint of r and b influences in Angelica's electro-pop sound, it is obvious to this listener that Angelica is more interested in creating music that is not predictable or in one particular sound. All three songs have their own distinct sounds. I am particularly fond of "Nightlight".

02. Yukari

I was perusing the dreampop section on bandcamp today at work when I came across Echo by Japanese electronica artist Yukari. Really loved what I heard on her album Echo. The music reminded me of Conjure One, Balligomingo, Delerium, and Aby Wolf.

03. BlackBird

Another find on bandcamp. Really interesting music from the one album I heard from him. Will have to check out his other music.
04. Cosmic Armchair

This is one of my most streamed albums/EPs I have been listening to online. It is so damn good.

05. Summer Twins

I also found this band on bandcamp today. They reminded me a little of the Dum Dum Girls and The Raveonettes but without the distorted guitars. Really catchy pop/rock. Very retro to say the very least.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Tegan and Sara at First Avenue on 06.16.14

Another major concert for me has come and gone within a blink of an eye. Last night I braved the dreary wet weather to attend my first Tegan and Sara concert at First Avenue. I have to admit I really wasn't a big fan of Tegan and Sara's music until the release of Heartthrob last year. While a lot of the sisters' diehard fans weren't pleased about their electro-pop direction, I myself really enjoyed it. I was disappointed when I missed them at First Avenue the last time they were in town (which I think was last year). Despite the miserable weather, the concert proved to be worth every single damn penny I spent on my ticket which was about $50. I took some pictures which can be seen in this photobucket folder of concerts I attended this year (and just used my smartphone to take pictures).

goth_maven's Other concerts I have attended album on Photobucket

City Pages has their own review of the Tegan and Sara show with the set list.

My $0.02? I was pleased that the band played most of Heartthrob. Too bad they didn't perform my personal favorite song "Love They Say" off the album. Absolutely loved their cover of "Let My Love Open the Door". Here is video footage from another show where they ended the set with the song.

The sisters were amusing and were quite interactive with the audience. Tegan and Sara clearly love their fanbase and it really showed during the night.

As for the opening acts The Courtneys and My Midnight Heart, My Midnight Heart captured my heart. And for someone who does not particularly like music with a heavy dose of r and b, I loved My Midnight Heart's music. Angelica Allen really impressed me with her vocals. Today I checked out her EP Chest of Hearts which is really, really good.

My favorite track is "NightLight". Check it out. It is a beautiful song.

IMHO The Courtneys were okay. I'm so over pop-punk but I think if you dig that genre, you will like The Courtneys. Their music is fast, energetic,and catchy too.

All in all I had a great time at the show. I was smart to sit on the wall near the stage as opposed to trying to get in the front row. The venue was sold out and the mainfloor at First Avenue was jam packed with sweaty people. I certainly would say that this show was one of my favorite shows of 2014 (so far). Up next...Veruca Salt in July! :)

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Mixtape: June Edition

A few days ago I had a strange desire to put together a mixtape. It had been a long time since I made a mixtape. I thought it would be a fun project for my blog. I began to think of what songs to put on it. Most of the songs I put on it has nothing to do with the dark underground scene. I wanted my compilation to have the same sort of Garden State/Lost in Translation quality to it. To go with my mixtape, I put together a Spotify playlist so my readers can listen to the music. Unfortunately a few of the songs on my compilation could not be found but used youtube clips to fill in the void. I hope some people will enjoy what I created. I know I do and had fun putting it together. Sorry for the lack of an original name for the compilation but I figure this could be part of an ongoing monthly series.

01. Chvrches: The Mother We Share
02. Phantogram: Bill Murray
03. Chelsea Wolfe: They'll Clap When You're Gone
04. Sigur Ros: Fjogur Piano
05. Grimes: Nightmusic
06. The Civil Wars: C'est La Mort
07. Dum Dum Girls: Trees and Flowers
08. The Raveonettes: The Great Love Sound
09. Claps: Across the Floor
10. Depeche Mode: But Not Tonight

01. Keep Shelly in Athens: Don't Be Afraid

02. Moonlight Cove: Lost Angel
03. Exitmusic: The Modern Age
04. Moby: The Lonely Night
05. Mazzy Star: I've Gotta Stop
06. The Jesus and Mary Chain: Some Candy talking

07. Fort Wilson Riot: Still Believe in Love

08. Endless Blue: The Feeling
09. Darden Smith: Little Victories
10. Hooverphonic: The Magnificent Tree
11. Nitin Sawhney: Bring it Home (featuring Imogen Heap)

Saturday, June 14, 2014

5 male artists that you should know

In my last blog I posted about 5 female artists that you should know, so for my latest blog entry it would be only fair to focus on the guys.

01. Enrico Filisetti (Blume)

Without a shadow of a doubt, Enrico Filisetti is easily my favorite male singer. He has such a deep, warm voice that just gives me the warm and fuzzies when I throw in one of Blume's albums into my stereo.

02. Anders Hagstrom (Ashbury Heights)

I can't believe it has been 7 years since Three Cheers For the Newlydead was released (AH's first album). I discovered Ashbury Heights on Myspace when Myspace was still relevant. The male/female dynamics reminded me a bit of Blutengel but more on the synthpop side and without the vampire-themed lyrics. It's really difficult for me to describe Anders' vocals, he definitely has a distinct sound compared to other singers in the synthpop genre but I like what I hear from him.

03. Damasius Venys (a href=>Mondtraume)

With Empty being my favorite synthpop album of this so far, it is obvious that I would have to include Damasius on my list. His voice is what help makes Mondtraume's first album so freaking good. Hearing him sing always makes me feel better if I am in a bad mood.

04. Markus Landgren (Moonlight Cove)
Yeah, another singer from a synthpop band. I know. I love my synthpop. LOL! Moonlight Cove put out one of the best releases in 2012. They also became one of my favorite synthpop bands in recent years. Markus puts in so much emotion into his music I can hear it in the band's songs.

05. Kold Nitronoise

As far as industrial music or harsh EBM is concerned, Kold from Nitro/Noise is my favorite singer. For the most part I do prefer clean vocals but there are some singers who can really pull off the distorted vocals and make me love them (Erica Norris of Unter Null, Johan van Roy of Suicide Commando, Jasyn Banger of God Module as examples) and Kold is one of them. What makes him stand apart from the other artists I just mentioned is that his type of vocals is more commonly heard in death metal music than in the aggrotech/harsh EBM genre but it works effectively for me.

Friday, June 13, 2014

5 Female artists that you should know

I am not going to get into gory details for why I was inspired to write tonight's blog. I will just say that it culminated from what I have seen on Facebook last night and today. What was discussed quickly got me to start thinking about the women in the dark underground music scene and how much or how little recognition certain artists receive. I thought I would share with my readers the 10 female artists that people should be aware of (and tomorrow I will post the 5 male artists that people should be aware of too).

01. Jai (Sensuous Enemy)

Jai has been one of my top ten favorite singers for the past five years now. I think she has one of the best set of pipes around, not to mention Sensuous Enemy being one of my personal favorite bands in the dark music scene in general. I personally think it is a crime that Jai and her band is not more widely known.

02. Sara Noxx

Maybe it is just the scene I am part of where I live but I'm rather stunned that Sara Noxx isn't more known. I have been a fan of her music for several years now. First time I heard of Sara Noxx was on the "Navigator" remix by Blutengel. Considering how obscure her music is in the scene, I have paid good money for imports for her music but it is so worth it.

03. Valerie Renay (Noblesse Oblige)

Noblesse Oblige was my new favorite band of 2013. I really became a big fan of their music when I heard their song "Runaway" off their latest album Affair of the Heart thanks in part to Valerie's vocals.

04. Yaz (Javelynn)

I have been a fan of Yaz since her days in Ashbury Heights (she was on their first two albums). Javelynn is her latest musical project. Chimaera at Heart definitely solidified Yaz as one of my favorite (female) singers in my book.

05. Anastasia Dimou (Feathers)

If All Now Here is one of my favorite releases from last year that I heard this year. Normally I am wary of comparisons to other bands but I think in the case of Feathers sounding like a female version of Depeche Mode, the description is spot on. I really love the ethereal vocals by Anastasia Dimou. They often give me the chills when I listen to the album.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Albums I am currently listening to

The Essential Sarah McLachlan

I almost forgot how much I love Sarah McLachlan's music until recently when I picked up this album at the library earlier this week. I really prefer her early music.

Sarah McLachlan: Shine

I really wanted to like the new Sarah McLachlan album but I can't. It's a real snoozefest.

Mazzy Star: Seasons of Your Day

I only listened to this album once last year. I found the album at the library last weekend and picked it up. I really like the new Mazzy Star album. Kinda wish that I went to their show last year but it is what it is.

Putumayo Presents: Native America

I also got this compilation at the library last weekend. Not very long but a very good compilation of music by various Native American musicians. I definitely plan on buying my own copy one day.

Hole: Live Through This

I was always more of an L7 fan than of Hole's music but I always liked their album Live Through This. Just got the album from the library this week. I think the music still holds up well. It is very raw and angry.

L7: Bricks Are Heavy

My soundtrack to my sophomore year in high school. Still love this album to this very day. I miss this band.

Dum Dum Girls: End of Daze

Another favorite release from the Dum Dum Girls, my favorite band of 2014 so far.

Morcheeba: Blood Like Lemonade

I just can't get enough of the new Cosmic Armchair EP. I have been listening to it non-stop. I can hardly wait for the duo to release a full-length album later this year.

Another great new signing from Alfa Matrix. Can't wait to hear what else this Aussie duo has to offer. Absolutely love the song "Frostbite".

Love this album! Been listening to it since Tuesday when it was unleashed to the public. Certainly one of my current favorite albums at the moment.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Album of the Week: Fearful Shepherds Hunt Their Sheep

Yesterday was the day when the new album by The Luna Sequence came out. As someone with very little patience, I started listening to the new album via bandcamp. I was definitely not disappointed. I really like the sound that Kaia Young has got going for her with the mix of industrial, metal, and drum and bass music. Yesterday and part of today I listened to the majority of The Luna Sequence's catalog. I personally think Fearful Shepherds Hunt Their Sheep is her best work to date. I love the intricate melodies and the bombastic guitar riffs. The violin was a nice added touch. I was reminded a bit of Lindsey Stirling. So for this week's Album of the Week, I have chosen Fearful Shepherds Hunt Their Sheep. I really do recommend checking out The Luna Sequence's music. It is a nice departure from what I usually listen to on a daily basis at work.

Monday, June 9, 2014

5 artists/bands to check out


I recently got around to listening to the new Machinista EP Arizona Lights. I absolutely loved it. Definitely worth listening to.

Ravet he Reqviem

Moonlight Cove

Sensuous Enemy

Noblesse Oblige

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Office Playlist of the Week

It's that time again. Time for me to prep myself for another fun week at the insane asylum (i.e work). Here is what I plan on listening to this week (hopefully my Psyborg Corp album will show up this week):

Sirus: Broken Hearts Corporate Minds

Nitro/Noise: No Cure For Apocalypse

Mankind is Obsolete: Mobius Loop

Fort Wilson Riot: Trillun

Die Braut: Psychotherapy

Blutengel: Labyrinth

Mazzy Star: Seasons of Your Day

L7: Bricks Are Heavy

Panic Lift: Is This Goodbye?

Lindsey Stirling: Shatter Me

Dum Dum Girls: End of Daze

Dum Dum Girls: Too True

Marsheaux: Lumineux Noir

Phantogram: Voices

Morcheeba: Blood Like Lemonade

Saturday, June 7, 2014

My current favorite songs of 2014 (so far)

Last week I posted a blog listing some of my favorite releases of 2014. I thought tonight I would post my favorite songs from this year so far. I have created a playlist on Spotify aptly titled My current favorite songs of 2014 (so far). It will be updated through out the year and eventually finalized before the end of the year.

01. Are You Okay? - Dum Dum Girls
02. Shatter Me (featuring Lizzy Hale) - Lindsey Stirling
03. If We Stop Breeding - Nitro/Noise
04. Fall In Love - Phantogram
05. New Life - Mondtraume
06. False Face - God Module
07. Life is Unfair (and Love is a Bitch) - Junksista
08. Frostbite - Avarice in Audio
09. Conversation (Club Mix) - Cosmic Armchair
10. Lies - Anette Olzon

"Are You Okay?" by Dum Dum Girls was the song that convinced me that I needed my own copy of their new album Too True. It is so unforgettably catchy. I am always finding myself singing along to the song.

Without a shadow of a doubt, the new Nitro/Noise album No Cure For Apocalypse is my favorite industrial album of 2014 (next to 3 Teeth's debut album). It wasn't easy for me to pick out which of the songs from that album to put on my playlist so I opted for "If We Stop Breeding" on a whim. All of the songs on the new album is terrific. The songs have solid hooks to maintain the listener's attention yet the music remains as aggressive as the first album. As far as up and coming new bands, Nitro/Noise is by far one of my personal faves.

Right now I am really loving the recent additions to Alfa Matrix's record label Avarice in Audio and Cosmic Armchair. Their brand of synthpop music totally blows my mind. I first heard Cosmic Armchair on the latest Alfa Matrix compilation when I ordered the Mondtraume album Empty from them. Cosmic Armchair reminded me of some of the synthpop music on A Different Drum records back in the early to mid '00s. Avarice in Audio is this killer Australian duo whose music reminds me of Delerium (when their music is remixed into dance tracks). Just awesome electro-pop/synthpop.

Of course I had to add one of my deeply personal favorite songs from the debut album by my favorite synthpop band Mondtraume "New Life". It is such a beautiful song written about the group's programmer Pikotto's son. Such a loving tribute and it does not come off as cheesy or emotionally manipulative.

The rest of the songs on my playlist is worth listening to. I really love "Shine" by Anette Olzon. It is a gorgeous sweeping ballad. "False Face" by God Module is definitely my favorite song on the new God Module album which I definitely recommend checking out. It is only June but 2014 is really shaping up to be a really excellent year for music.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Album of the Week: Mobius Loop by Mankind Is Obsolete

Yesterday I received my copy of the new Mankind Is Obsolete album Mobius Loop which was recently unleashed upon the public at the end of May. Up until now I had been listening to it via Bandcamp but now that I have the actual CD, I have been really listening to the album as much as possible. This is my pick for Album of the Week. If you like the fusion of rock and electronica music like I:Scintilla, I definitely would recommend giving Mankind Is Obsolete a listen.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Some of my favorite albums of 2014

Now that it is June, I thought I would share with my readers some of my favorite releases from 2014 so far. Still waiting for my copies of the new Psyborg Corp, God Destruction, and Machinista albums but I have no doubt they will end up on my end of the year list. I should note that this list is not in order. Just sharing some of my favorite albums from this year :).

Mankind is Obsolete: Morbius Loop

Last week I first listened to the new MKIO album on bandcamp. I was immediately hooked on the album. I automatically went to the band's website and ordered a copy of the album. I am really digging the new album a lot. It is so freaking good. I definitely recommend giving it a listen and hopefully you will buy a copy.

Mondtraume: Empty

Easily my favorite synthpop album of 2014 and is quickly beocming one of my personal favorite synthpop albums of all time. I haven't been able to stop listening to this album since I got it back in April. The music is so addictive.

Nitro/Noise: No Cure for Apocalypse

Nitro/Noise definitely did not disappoint me with their new album. Very aggressive and energetic.

Lucid Living: Miracless

As a fan of Delerium, Balligomingo, Sleepthief, and Conjure One, this EP by independent artist Lucid Living really appealed to me right away.

Army On the Dance Floor: Many Faces of War

Dum Dum Girls: Too True

Too True was the first release of 2014 I bought this year. It also got me into the Dum Dum Girls big time.

Anette Olzon: Shine

I really didn't expect to like this album so much but I did. I think Anette was better suited off as a solo artist as opposed to being a member of a popular gothic metal band.

As far as local releases goes, I absolutely love the new EP/album by Astronomique and Fort Wilson Riot.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Dear Minnesota,

I love you and all but sometimes you drive this music fanatic up the wall with your preconceived notions of music festivals, let alone music. I was reading today on City Pages the line up for this year's Skyline Music Festival. I felt like I was reading the line up for this year's Taste of Minnesota line up. In other words...I was not impressed. According to Wikipedia, the term "music festival" is a festival orientated towards music that is sometimes presented with a theme. Judging by Skyline Music Festival's line up, the organizers were aiming for the boring, bland, white-bread "music" audiences. All I could really think to myself is "This really is a sad state of affairs if the music organizers behind Skyline (as well as Taste of Minnesota) thinks this is what music fans in Minnesota would enjoy".  When I saw the line up, all I saw was white people, and not just white people but white people who plays really bland, boring music.

To the folks of Skyline Music Festival, let me just go on record to say this...this is a music festival.

What you are offering is NOT a music festival. It isn't even a day long concert. It is what, a six hour concert? Do concert organizers not know what a music festival is? Apparently not. Minnesota, we can do so much better.

While I do blame the promoters  of the Skyline Music Festival and Taste of MN's for having such lame musical line ups (probably based on their lily white taste in music), I also have to blame the locals here in my state for having such uninteresting tastes in music. Clearly the organizers of those events knows those artists will attract quite a few people to the events. Paul McCartney is also coming to Target Field in August (yet didn't bring in a reunited Dead Can Dance in 2012). Yawn! This is what I get for living in the midwest...I'm surrounded by people who don't take risks in a lot of things, listening to different types of music being one of them. Granted Minneapolis is no New York City, Chicago, or Los Angeles but is this the best we can do for " big music festivals or concerts" ? A couple of years ago Saint Paul had a Coachella-type festival put on by Live Nation. That failed due to mediocre sales and it never returned to the scene. Also First Avenue was supposed to put on its own music festival (first last year, then was pushed for this year). I think that idea was squashed. The lack of diversity at Skyline Music Festival and Taste of MN is really appalling to me. When I say "diversity", I mean both in terms of musical genres as well as ethnicities. Obviously the organizers of these events thinks all Minnesotans like myself all enjoy such insipid, white bread music by the likes of O.A.R, The Rembrandts, and Melissa Etheridge. Want to put together a festival? Then use festivals like Coachella and Lollapalooza as examples. The line up for Skyline is a freaking joke.

Then there are the local radio stations that helps contribute fostering the white bread culture in the music scene here in the Twin Cities. Just take a listen to Cities 97 which has quickly become another KDWB minus the obnoxious djs. At one point Cities 97did air some cool music but that was when I was in high school in the '80s/'90s. Then there is KTwin and 104.1 Jack FM, both stations can't seem to make up their minds whether they want to be a classic rock station or a pop radio station like KDWB. The only saving graces that the Twin Cities have here is The Current, Radio K, and KFAI. The Current may not be perfect and is more mainstream compared to Radio K and KFAI but the station does have some cool programming like Transmission and Teenage Kicks. From time to time I will hear some music I enjoy.

For my fellow Minnesotans, please try to branch out and listen to music that isn't popular amongst your friends or the scene you are in. There are other genres outside of hip hop, heavy metal, indie rock, and EDM. Try challenging yourself by using sites like Pandora or Spotify.

Don't get me wrong, I love you Minnesota. I have attended many a great concerts in this state and do appreciate the local music scene immensely but sometimes you frustrate me with your cluelessness about music related events. It would be nice if you would pay attention to reality and realize that you can't always bring in big crowds with a bunch of has been acts or artists whose music is about as interesting or innovative as a wet noodle. The fact that Melissa Etheridge is headlining a music festival is testament to everything I have just said about the music scene in Minnesota. Please get a brain AND a clue.

Yours truly,

A music fan

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

5 artists/bands you should check out

01. Waves Under Water

Not sure if the band is still together. I have checked their Twitter and FB accounts and nothing. Nevertheless I still think their music should be heard. If you like female fronted dark synthpop, you'll dig this band.

02. Surgyn

03. Cosmic Armchair

04. Avarice in Audio

05. Fort Wilson Riot

Monday, June 2, 2014

Aesthetic Perfection with Surgyn and Panic Lift on 05.31.14

In case you missed it, here are my pics from Saturday night's show at Ground Zero.
goth_maven's Aesthetic Perfection with Surgyn and Panic Lift album on Photobucket

You can also see more pictures on my Instagram account.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Some food for thought: May in Review

Well May is finally over. I thought I was busy in April but May proved to be my busiest month ever for concerts and a very good month for new music. I thought I would just share my thoughts with my readers my going on's last month.

Concerts: Never have I been to so many shows in one month. I thought I was busy in April but I had more to go to in May. I went to quite a few local shows. Of the local shows I attended, the latest DSMN and the Girl Germs proved to be the only local shows worth my time and money. While I did enjoy Astronomique's set at Cause, I left early because they were the only reason I went to the show. The Fort Wilson Riot release I left early was out of anger. I was sick of pushy people or wankers who kept intruding on my personal space without any consideration by dancing. I'm sorry but I truly have come to despise hipsters. They are rude and totally inconsiderate for others around them at club. Sorry I didn't get to see FWR perform live but I did buy their new album and I think it is terrific, their fanbase? Not so much. They are a bunch of self-absorbed wankers IMHO. So from me to all hipsters, I would like to say a big FU. I should have gone to the Orchyd show instead but can't do anything about that now. People in the dark underground scene are nowhere as rude, pushy and inconsiderate towards others as you are. There may be a few pricks but nothing compared to the gobs of hipsters in the local scene. The world owes you twats NOTHING. So get over yourselves BIG TIME. Yeah, totally unprofessional for me to say that here but I'll make the exception in this case. The audience at First Avenue for Girl Germs Tribute was immensely better. I will say that seeing a lot of underage audience members made me feel a bit old ;). That show was definitely the highlight of May in terms of local shows. I got to see my favorite drummer Lori Barbero emcee the event but best of all, finally got to see L'Assassins live. They really tore up the stage during their set. I got to start going to more shows by the punkabilly band. They are so much fun to see live.

As far as the goth/industrial scene, my favorite performances in May was Ego Likeness, Surgyn, and God Module. I was really impressed with Surgyn's performance last night. I love their mix of clean and harsh vocals. I also picked up their new album Envy. Once again DWA has put out another quality album. DWA is definitely my favorite record label. I guess with my musical tasting veering more into the harsh EBM territory, it would be obvious that DWA would be more suited to my musical tastes. God Module was fucking awesome to see for the first time. They are definitely becoming a favorite of mine. Of course I was happy to see Ego Likeness. Donna Lynch sounds so incredible live. The band's records really don't do justice. I love hearing her sing "Persona Non Grata" live. It was also good seeing De/vision and Voltaire (what little I saw) but to be honest I have outgrown Voltaire's music. I like his early music on Projekt Records but after his stint with the label, I have moved on to bigger and better things.

New Music: I finally got around to buying Blutengel's Black Symphonies album. I really like it but I wish the band included some older tracks. The new Stoneburners album Songs in the Key of Arrakis is superb. I definitely recommend buying it. I also recommend the new albums by Surgyn and Mankind is Obsolete. I recently streamed the new MKIO album at work last week and was truly impressed with what I heard. I quickly ordered a copy of their new album Mobius Loop from their website. As I said earlier, the new Fort Wilson Riot Trillum is excellent. I picked up a copy at their album release show at the Triple Rock. Easily one of my favorite local albums of 2014 as is the new Astronomique EP Burning Stars Fade. Earlier in May, I re-acquired a copy of Nightwish's classic Oceanborn album. I have missed having the album in my CD collection. Still holds up to this very day. Definitely my favorite Nightwish album. While at the Aesthetic Perfection show last night, I finally bought Panic Lift's Is This Goodbye? album. I am really enjoying it. I should have bought it sooner but at least I bought it directly from the band and helped them with their travels.

Right now I am currently waiting for my copies of Psyborg Corp's The Frozen Shrines of Obsydyana, Arizona Lights by Machinista, Novus Ordo Seclorum by God Destruction, and Mobius Loop by Mankind is Obsolete. I am particularly excited to hear the long awaited Psyborg Corp's second album.

So there you have it, the month of May in so many words ;). June is going to be quiet in comparison with just Tegan and Sara as my big concert for the month and L'Assassins at Icehouse for my local show to attend.