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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2016



01. The Human Voice - Silent Heart
02. Trees Of Eternity
- Hour Of The Nightingale
03. Darkher
- Realms
04. Aeon Sable
- Hypaerion
05. The Foreshadowing
- Seven Heads Ten Horns
06. NU:N
- Naked Until Noema
07. Cryo Chamber Collaboration
- Nyarlathotep
08. In The Woods...
- Pure
09. Klimt 1918
- Sentimentale Jugend
10. Terra Tenebrosa
- The Reverses

More HERE

Random album

Oberer Totpunkt - Desiderat (2014) - Review

Band: Oberer Totpunkt
Album title: Desiderat
Release date: 14 March 2014
Label: Danse Macabre Records

Tracklist:
01. Es war immer so    
02. Langfristig gesehen sind wir alle tot
03. (Das ist nicht) Meine Welt
04. Geisterfahrt
05. Das Leben wartet nicht auf Dich
06. Spiegel im Käfig
07. Alle lügen
08. Nur ein Traum
09. Fremde Seele
10. Sei auf der Hut
11. Hab keine Angst mein Freund

Surprise, surprise from German duo Oberer Totpunkt... Four years after the previous bizarre album, Stiller Zoo, the band hits with Desiderat. This time Bettina (vocals and lyrics) and Michael (music and drums) went over the border and crushed some barriers of electronic music. Everything is in duality, between white and black, between harsh and tender, between desire and hope, and I can go on and on. The band distanced themselves from minimalistic bizzareness from their early days, yet served one of the strongest and dense sounds ever recorded by the band. Before I proceed you must know what's the meaning of the bands name: Oberer Totpunkt - short ::OT:: (Top dead center = TDC) is the highest point of the piston in the motor. The highest point and moment of return before the chemical reaction. And in Desiderat there are many such moments...

Like in the past there's everything centered around Bettina's strong words and her hypnotic voice. The music is on the second level, but still it's as much important as spoken, sometimes screamed words, with a punk attitude, from the mounth of the singer or better said reciter. The tracks can be divided into two or maybe even three categories. The initial four are simply blasting walls of sound, words get company of heavily distorted guitar riffs that fulfil the place, then industrialized electronic beats, apocalyptic drums, cyber elements and pumping basslines. It's pretty dense and sombre atmosphere, thus there's no proper, or at least a very little place for typical EBM dancefloor rhytms which is somehow the basis of Oberer Totpunkt musical creation, especially not in the devastating opener "Es war immer so". Multilingual "Langfristig gesehen sind wir alle tot" is a gem of its own, the vocals really penetrate your mind in this one, thanks also to the great mix and impressive production.

The harsh momentum of the first four tracks is then in an elegant manner overtaken with dark ambient bleak atmosphere of "Das Leben wartet nicht auf Dich". The spoken words, even if they have less power from now on, make a tremendous impact on the listener and the gloomy curtain of sounds in the background is simply magical. The pace changes a little bit in the next one, bass driven, another multilingual, cyber-gothy "Spiegel im Kaefig", and you must give some attention to a nice piano that occasionally softens the ambiance. It's needless to say that from now on Desiderat needs some more devotion to not become monotone. German spoken words add the necessary hardness, but the real job to achieve that is the unmistakable apocalyptic bass drive.

And then there's the part that has got my minor applause. The next two tracks dwell in rather typical danceable EBM waters and it's needless to say that Oberer Totpunkt do this with greatness, but it has to be said that it's nothing spectacular, neither something original as the innitial part of the album. Especially the penultimate "Sei auf der Hut", where we can hear also some male vocals, is really an inappropriate one. Of course I believe that it can become a club hit with its upbeat danceable rhythm, but it's not my cup of tea. Thanks god there's a nice conclusion with another recited, dark and quite captivating track named "Hab keine Angst mein Freund". Desiderat is one of the most dynamic and interesting dark-electro albums released lately, it has so many impressive twists, many great atmospheric moments, haunting vocal job or speeches, and a lot of rhytmic lines that constantly drill into the brains of the listener. I'm only sorry that I don't understand German because the lyrics in here have a lot of importance. I strongly suggest, not only to Oberer Totpunkt, but to the whole German electro scene, that they are heard all over the world and some translations of their texts wouldn't hurt, some of us are actually reading them.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 8/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Bands: Apocryphos, Kammarheit, Atrium Carceri
Album title: Onyx
Release date: 08 September 2015
Label: Cryo Chamber

Onyx is one of the dark ambient albums that we will still be speaking of in 10 years. The level of workmanship on Onyx can't be understated. The intricacy of each layer is astounding. There is attention to the minutest details given throughout the album. It has no beginning and no ending; it stays with you once you have experienced it. One track will induce a calm meditative state while the next will unnerve you just enough to feel the evolving emotions yet not be jarred from the experience. Onyx is an instant classic of the dark ambient genre. The talent of the individual artists throughout cannot be understated, and the mastering work and vision of Simon Heath bringing it all together at the end is possibly the best yet on Cryo Chamber. Onyx is a nonstop pleasure from beginning to end and a must have album for any fan of the dark ambient genre. The dynamics on some tracks and slow progressions on others showcase the breadth of sound arrangements which fit into dark ambient and the ability to blend them all together for one epic release. This album is sure to send reverberations through the genre, as it has through me.

Read a full review HERE