Thank the internet for free translation websites, because there is damn near nothing about this band in English. Hailing from Paris, Aswefall appears to have not a lot of output, the most notable of which is this single from last year, "Nevermore". I didn't need to google translate the names of bands that kept coming up in reviews about them; it seems like everyone thinks they remind them of some band from the '80s, or maybe three or four of them, but no one agrees on which one. Like Colder, they're decidedly French, and appropriately, one of their songs is the official music for Air France. But what stands out to me here isn't their techno-slick repetitive new wave, but the dark atmosphere, Cure style bassline, and Poe-esque lyrics that bring to mind a goth warehouse party.
It's from last year, but this mix deserves a post. Recorded for Death Disco Radio, the megatalented French musician and DJ Miss Kittin (of Miss Kittin and The Hacker fame) reaches back to her roots with this perfectly executed freestyle-heavy retro mix. Yes, Miss Kittin doing freestyle. I'm not even much of a fan of the genre, but I love this mix. You have to hear it. She drops some Ebn-Ozn, Yaz, Anne Clark, New Order, and Exposé in here, if that gives you an idea.
Available (for free!) on the
Lying somewhere between Joy Division and Fad Gadget and sounding far more French than they actually are is a Dutch duo I'll almost guarantee you've never heard of: Nine Circles. I can say this with some confidence because most of their catalog, though recorded in 1982, was never even released until 1996. No, I'm not making that up. I have no idea why they sat on it so long, because they probably would've been a big hit in some alternative dance clubs 28 years ago.
According to their MySpace page (sorry, it's all I have to go on), Lidia Fiala and Peter Van Garderen are actually doing concerts still. I doubt we will ever see them here in the States, but I can always hope they'll open on the next Ladytron tour...
I've been hanging out with the local disco crew lately (see events at right), and it's starting to rub off, I think, because I keep playing Maethelvin on Thursdays. You'd never believe this song is only a couple of years old; if I didn't know better, I might have guessed it was from a Miami Vice soundtrack. Probably the least known act from the
I'll complete our series of New Order tribute posts this week with a look towards the future and an artist I have been dying to write about since we started this blog. The work of Parisian graphic designer Marc Nguyen Tan, Colder bears some resemblance to the fashion industry he works in by day; dark minimalism comes across as stylish and sexy despite it's mechanical synthesized structure and disassociated vocals. Is this meant to be heard on a dance floor, or alone at home with the lights out?
"To The Music" is a particular favorite of mine, an anthem to the solitary dancer, lost in the music and oblivious to the gaze of bystanders. I can think of few songs more appropriate for Neo, where it seems all eyes are on the floor. It's taken from Heat, but if I were to recommend only one Colder album, I'd first choose 2003's solid Again. Though the influence of Joy Division couldn't be more obvious, it's an equally fine example of modern French new wave.
Without an official website (or even so much as a MySpace page) and a now-defunct label, it's difficult to know if/when there will be another Colder album out. In
Finally, no post on Colder would be complete without including Nguyen Tan's unbelievably good remix of Depeche Mode's "Clean". I feel like Depeche Mode doesn't get enough credit for how spot-on they are with choosing the most perfect and current producers to remix their stuff, and they really nailed it with this one. Do I dare say it? I like it better than the original.
Coincidentally, Marc Nguyen Tan released a new album just last week; it's a collaboration with his long time friend Guillaume Ollendorff, under the name Scratoa!. Called Live en San Antón, it was recorded in the barrio of the same name in Alicante, Spain two years ago. It's improvised noisy experimental sound is quite a departure from Colder, and will more likely appeal to Nurse With Wound fans.
Posted: February 3rd, 2010
at 6:17pm by qbot
Tagged with 2005, again, chris and cosey, clean, colder, dark, depeche mode, designer, french, guillaume ollendorff, heat, joy division, live en san anton, marc nguyen tan, minimalism, new order, new wave, nurse with wound, paris, post punk, remix, scratoa, to the music, tribute
Comments: 1 comment
I first heard this song on an untitled mix tape with no track listing about twenty years ago. The tape was destroyed after years of over-use, and sadly I never learned the name or artist. Sometime in the early part of the last decade,
Lisa's note: I found a great post on Hassan, along with the Razormaid mix,
A lot of people get really upset when I say this, but I swear it's true; most of what we play at Atomic isn't technically new wave. Depeche Mode? Synthpop. Duran Duran? New Romantic. Joy Division? Post Punk. I could go on and on, but we're not that picky, and most people would probably be bored to tears with a pure new wave night anyway. When I think of real new wave, I think of the simple electronic pop that could be defined in no other way. I think of M, or even Devo, but personally I lean towards the darker stuff. And no one, I mean no one, did this better than the French in the early '80s.
Deux is a great example of this. The duo formed when Gérard Pelletier moved to Lyon and met art school student Cati Tete [her artwork is described as violent and grotesque, but sadly I couldn't dig any of it up online]. Their music is clearly heavily inspired by Kraftwerk and in current contexts is easily confused with Ladytron. Though they seem to have done rather well in France and at one point had their own imprint, the label went under after only a few years. After an attempt at more mainstream singles in the early '90s, Deux ceased to release anything. Too bad; I'd love to hear what they'd make now if they returned to the studio.
"Game and Performance" was their 1983 debut single, a pop song left naked, stripped of all but minimalist lyrics and melodies. Find it on their career-spanning 2006 compilation Agglomerat.
Available through the Deux
Ok, so… it's a bit hypocritical for me to post this, I'll admit it. I mostly make fun of
But I can't deny their influence, which is rampant everywhere from synthpop to Detroit techno and, of course, the industrial and EBM scenes that they had a hand in founding. Their style sounded very dated to me 10 years ago, but now the minimalism sounds fresh--all things come back again, of course.
I choose to post "Let Your Body Learn" from 1987's That Total Age release because to me, it relates well to new wave [and I'm sure the influence goes both ways]. I'm also including a new track from Neon Electronics vs
We're thrilled to be giving away tickets to their upcoming concert on Thanksgiving night. Though lacking in trees, Nitzer Ebb put on a great live show, and I'm sure they won't disappoint. Opening for them is my absolute favorite local-Chicago-via-way-of-Detroit band
Posted: November 19th, 2009
at 3:09am by qbot
Tagged with 1987, 2004, 2009, american, american automatic, better way, bon harris, british, chicago, concert, dancedelic d, david gooday, demento, detroit, douglas mccarthy, ebm, food, french, ghostly, industrial, kill memory crash, let your body learn, minimalism, mute, neon electronics, nitzer ebb, runestones, talking to trees, techno, thanksgiving, that total age, the hacker, tickets, witchcraft
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