Nov 2012 08

X Marks the Pedwalk - The Sun, the Cold, and My Underwater FearX Marks the Pedwalk
Category: EBM
Album: The Sun, the Cold, and My Underwater Fear
Stars: 3
Blurb: The influential German band returns with a mix of up-tempo commercial numbers and ambient musical excursions.


A band that needs no introduction to anyone with even the slightest interest in electronic body music, the trio of Sevren ni-Arb, Raive Yarx, and Estefania has on their seventh full-length album presented a mixture of up-tempo tracks that lack the harsher feel of their previous work and, as a result, sound quite commercial, along with more atmospheric numbers, the subaqueous nature of which do more to evoke the cover image. This makes for an album of varied moods, although the album is at its best when the thoughtful instrumentation of the latter is mixed with the dynamics of the former. This is so on “Fallen Angel,” which mixes an almost rock-like feel with a complex sonic tapestry that adds a god deal of depth, and the overtly dynamic “Run! Run! Mary!,” which makes its mark through mechanical sounding rhythms, hot guitar riffs, and vocals that sound uncannily like Clan of Xymox’s Ronny Moorings. For all that, there is an admirable compositional economy on such upbeat tracks as “Don’t Lie to Me” that nothing is superfluous; everything is there for a purpose. This is just as much the case during “The Day I Start to Die” and the commercial and danceable “The Side of the Wrong,” both of which could almost be ‘80s synthpop songs with their understated vocals and no-nonsense backing, while the analog flavored “No!” is seemingly an even more blatant attempt to resurrect the sound of the ‘80s. But, if they are (doubtless totally unintentional) echoes of the past, then the electronica style effects that grace the more atmospheric numbers see them embracing a more modern musical approach and show what they’re really capable of with Estefania’s vocals proving an important part of the ambient musical tapestries that grace the opening “You Are Gone,” as well as “Nightfall,” where her voice is embellished by synth swells and effective piano work. Likewise, a potent combination of heartfelt vocals and effective instrumentation makes the title track another highlight in contrast to the instrumentals that close the album, starting with the eight minute rhythmic excursion that is “MKK.2,” where an often minimalist mood is embellished in places by dreamlike riffs, while the serene “A.I.C.S.I.N.” closes proceedings on a bright, optimistic note that shows they’re well able to project some potent imagery through sound alone and proving that, sometimes, there’s no substitute for experience.
Track list:

  1. You Are Gone
  2. Don’t Lie to Me
  3. The Day I Start to Die
  4. The Side of the Wrong
  5. Nightfall
  6. The Sun, the Cold, and My Underwater Fear
  7. Fallen Angel
  8. Electric Summer
  9. Tormented Skin
  10. No!
  11. Run! Run! Mary!
  12. MKK.2
  13. A.I.C.S.I.N.

X Marks the Pedwalk Website
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Metropolis Records Website
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Metropolis Records Twitter
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
Carl Jenkinson (carlj)

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