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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017



01. Sólstafir
- Berdreyminn
02. Ulver
- The Assassination Of Julius Caesar
03. Au Champ Des Morts
- Dans La Joie
04. Anathema
- The Optimist
05. God Body Disconnect
- Sleeper's Fate
06. Peter Bjärgö
- Animus Retinentia
07. Friends Of Alice Ivy
- The Last Days Of Fenwyck
08. Isenordal
- Shores Of Mourning
09. Phallus Dei
- Black Dawn
10. Au-Dessus
- End Of Chapter

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Mils - Man Is A Lonely Soldier (2013) - Review

Band: Mils
Album title: Man Is A Lonely Soldier
Release date: 26 November 2013
Label: Dooweet Records

Tracklisting:
01. Straight On
02. Light For People
03. King In Love (feat. Sybreed)
04. Neon Life
05. Miracle (feat. This Misery Garden)
06. Keep Silent
07. 80's Child
08. In The Name Of
09. Trying To Fly

Man Is A Lonely Soldier is an outstanding debut album from this international collaboration under the name Mils. The band includes members that hail from France, Sweden and Switzerland and the sonic output is as well a blend of so many different genres, but yet beign compact and nicely flowing as hell. This combo is not afraid to make some experimentations, neither they are afraid if their sound could be a bit mainstream-ish. Isa, Jo, Tristan, Oliver, John and Ben made a big impact on me with this release, as it shows a huge talent and musical creativity from each involved member.

Man Is A Lonely Soldier is an album that is meant for a larger audience as it holds influences from such diverse styles as are blues, alternative rock, indie rock, metal, new wave, 80's pop, trip hop, it is very emotional, sometimes melancholic, but often very atmospheric. There are upbeat songs, like the opener "Straight On" or the conclusive "Trying To Fly", with hard hitting guitars, pounding drums and segments that are almost at the edge of gothic metal, not to mention amazing solos in both tracks. Almost each song is refined with a captivating refrain, great melodies and some sing along lines that show a big potential of the singer Isa. Her voice has kind of seductive power, it's quite unique, emotional and even if there are some tones that reminded me of Lauri Ylönen from Finish band The Rasmus, she can easily sing some lines in the pure emotive-pop style of, for example, Enya, just listen to emotional singing in "80's Child" and its vintage synths that ilustrate such a great ambiance, or how breathtaking are the final lines of "Keep Silent".

There's time also for some psychedelic moments, industrial beats, but in no way those songs lose its drive and catchiness and I believe that many melodies will remain in your head for a long time. Extra emphasis must be also on guests, Benjamin from Sybreed who took over the vocal part in "King In Love" and Steve from This Misery Garden who added his unforgettable touch on "Miracle". Then the song "In The Name Of", where Mils with those vocal samples and peculiar guitars, soul disturbing electronic elements and synths create such a psychedelic, out of this world, cinematic, bleak experience. With this moves Mils made a huge surplus in dynamics on this album and I'm more than sure that you won't get bored for a second while listening to Man Is A Lonely Soldier.

Maybe Mils could have done a bit more enthraling cover artwork to accompany those songs and production, done by Drop (guitarist in Sybreed, MXD), could be a bit deeper and strong, but nevertheless it's not bad, it gives kind of alternative, maybe kind of 80's hint. Mils's music can lift you up when you are depressed, it can embrace you with warmth, it can be very intimate, but at the same time also strong enough, and if they made such an astonishing, yet bold debut, then there is a lot to expect from them in the future.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 8,5/10

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Band: protoU
Album title: Khmaoch
Release date: 11 October 2016
Label: Cryo Chamber

This time around protoU is holding no bars. Sasha Cats has proven once and for all that she is, in fact, a dark ambient musician. Khmaoch brings the same serene drones and ASMR infused field recordings. But this time there is a definite darkness creeping up from beneath the surface. protoU has taken all the elements that made her first release work and doubled, nay, tripled them. There is a level of detail and precision here which begs the listener to come back over and over again. This time for the field recordings, listening as a story plays out in aural space. Next time for the deep and serene drone work, a perfect accompaniment to meditation or a diversion from insomnia. If there was any question before that protoU was not a perfect fit for Cryo Chamber, that can be put to rest. Khmaoch embodies all the things that a fan could ask for when it comes to dark ambient.

Read a full review HERE