Robert Wm. Gomez's

Bastard by Colin Newman (9/10)

Format: 
CD

This CD is a nice mix of electronics, processed guitars and throbbing dub-reggae style bass lines. There's nothing particularly groundbreaking here—plenty of standard drum and bass tropes—but, I find myself going back and listening to this album a lot. The guitar and bass keep it from the looped-sample boredom of pure laptop music but, at the same time, it never comes close to being a rock album.

Provisionally Entitled the Singing Fish / Not To by Colin Newman (7/10)

Format: 
CD

This CD compiles two solo albums from Colin Newman. Singing Fish  is mostly just Newman noodling around with keyboards. The style is reminiscent of the synth work on 154 and A-Z, but the songs are more atmospheric and don't really go anywhere. Not To is better and more in line with Newman's work with Wire. Perhaps it's the absence of Mike Thorne as producer/keyboardist, but somehow this record doesn't quite match the brilliance or the quirkiness of A-Z.

Up (6/10)

If they cut this film off at about 15 minutes it would have been a near-perfect short film. Unfortunately, once the main story begins with the launch of the balloon house, everything gets bland and predictable. Although, admittedly, it was fun to make inappropriate pedophilia jokes while watching the old man/boy scout hijinks.

A-Z by Colin Newman (10/10)

Format: 
CD

After creating three of the greatest records of the early punk years, Wire fractured into various solo projects. As far as I am concerned, A-Z is Wire's fourth record. It feels like the natural next step after 154. A-Z is filled with more synthesizers and song structures are more abstract and weird. The end result is simply mesmerizing.

House at the Edge of the Dark by Giallos Flame, The (9/10)

Format: 
MP3

Thanks to some free mp3 credits from Amazon, this is the first album that I ever purchased as a download! I have to say, I am really liking this release. The Giallos Flame is an English band which models its sound after the synth-laden prog-rock of late 70s/early 80s Italian horror movie soundtracks (Fabio Frizzi and Goblin). I have their first CD and it was good, but, at times it was maybe just a little too jazzy for my tastes. House at the Edge of the Dark is much better.

Survival of the Dead (6/10)

Another modern zombie movie that doesn't even attempt to be scary. I guess the Hatfields vs. McCoy setup could have been interesting, but the characters are just dull or stupid. Romero wants us to know that WE are the monsters, and has been telling us that rather blandly for the past decade.

Murder Inc. by Murder Inc. (6/10)

Format: 
CD

The first full length release from this band is just more of the same. Impotent Killing Joke with a Chris Connelly's David Bowie wannabe vocals. I like a couple of the songs (Last of the Urgents is quite good) and I am always glad to hear Martin Atkins' tom-heavy drumming, but, like the EP, this material is just average.

Corpuscle by Murder Inc. (5/10)

Format: 
CD

Murder Inc. is basically early 90's Killing Joke with Chris Connelly singing instead of Jaz Coleman. Without the nervous energy of Coleman the band is just sort of blah. The songs can go on too long and never really seem to go anywhere interesting.