Archive for Diorama

Review: Diorama – Even The Devil Doesn´t Care

Posted in Review with tags on March 9, 2013 by softsynth

Diorama are like that solid old car you have come to depend on over the years. It gets you were you need to go, you may not give it a lot of thought until you need it and it doesn’t hold a lot of surprises for you, it’s just reliable, unchanging and dependable. That’s the slightly more wordy version of: this latest from the German quartet is as-ever-solid, if unremarkable and they’ve delivered another strong effort that bears striking resemblance to what’s come before.

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Alright 2012, whatcha got for us…?

Posted in Commentary with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2011 by softsynth

So, 2011 is now on the way to the compost heap and we sweep the hearth clean in anticipation of what 2012 will bring. Lots of good stuff on the electronic music horizon, fortunately mostly slated for the early part of the year, which is a good thing as we’ll get to enjoy some good new music in advance of the looming apocalypse in the fall (or is it the spring? We get our apocoli confused).

Our list is topped by Assemblage 23’s Bruise (supposed to be out this fall, but we’ll take it whenever Mr. Shear wants to deliver it, so terrific was his last A23 album); and after hearing sensational advance tracks from Bunny Lake their The Sound Of Sehnsucht is also high on our anticipated list. But these two are far from alone. 2012 looks to be replete with potential awesomeness, to whit: Continue reading

The Softsynth 2010 playlist

Posted in Commentary with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 27, 2010 by softsynth

Daunting is the idea of having to single out singles.

a) What do singles even mean in 2010? The digital age, the era of the pre-release leak, the lack of any physical “release” for all intents and purposes, the absence of any television presence where videos are played in any meaningful way – all have lead to a music world where a so-called “single” means no more than any other stand-out track on an album.

b) If breaking down the best albums in a particular genre is as daunting as it was in 2010, the idea of having to attack the mountain of meaningful electronic songs and somehow rank them in a consequential way is beyond the mental capacity of this blogger.

That said, each year there rises an honour roll of sorts, in absolutely no particular order at all, no “first”, no “last” . just those songs (yes, usually singles, but not always) that were constantly on the Softsynth playlist this year; those songs that resonated and rose above the conclave, the 30 “best” electronic songs of 2010. Continue reading

Review: Diorama – Cubed

Posted in Review with tags , on April 10, 2010 by softsynth

Diorama are a remarkably consistent band. You know exactly what you are going to get more or less, and they deliver consistently. However, with each successive release they manage to sneak in a little more maturity and when you look at the entire Diorama catalogue you can see just how far they’ve grown.

One area which has become a Diorama staple is the big, anthemic electronic belter. This is a trait they share with VNV Nation (who take it even further, just skirting the edge of “too much”), and it looks good on them.

Lead single, “Child of Entertainment”, “Stereotype”, “Golden Boy”, and “Cubed” each fall into this category and when the boys ramp it up they fire on all cylinders. It just works; they know how to do this stuff effortlessly. When they try to mix it up it doesn’t work as well. Piano ballad “My Counterfeit” just ends up sounding a little wet and soppy and it goes nowhere; “Lord of the Lies” is overblown and lyrically pretentious (sometimes their lyrics go in this direction but when the music soars it almost makes sense, it “belongs”). But overall this is, song for song the best we’ve gotten from Diorama. It’s a solid, workmanlike, sometimes inspired album. Continue reading

March madness

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2010 by softsynth

As we swerve head-long into March Softsynth is excited about the spate of new releases from an assortment of some of our very favourite bands. A sampling of the March goodness:

Absurd Minds: Serve or Suffer – March 5

De/Vision: Popgefahr – March 9

Diorama: Cubed – March 19 (check out their new video for “Child of Entertainment” at the link below – despite the horrific lipsyncing we’re diggin’ the tune…)

Psy’Aviah: Eclectric – March 19

Goldfrapp: Head First – March 22

The Girl and the Robot: The Beauty of Decay – March 26

Blind Faith and Envy: Into the Calm – March ??? (they are still saying March but no actual date yet…hmm…)

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Electronic music in 2010

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 27, 2009 by softsynth

While not quite the promising bounty with which we were able to look toward 2009 this time last year we can look to the year ahead at a number of very exciting new releases. Goldfrapp’s 5th album is the big deal news around these here parts but we can also look forward to new material from the liked of De/Vision, Diorama, Michigan (rumoured), Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, Iris, Covenant, Ashbury Heights, Android Lust, Birthday Massacre, i:scintilla, Conjure One, LCD Soundsystem, Unter Null, Miss FD, Suicide Commando, Distain, Hot Chip, Ellie Goulding and the weirdness that is Ladytron…in the form of producers for Christina Augilara (which makes Softsynth’s virtual head ache with trying to envision the results of this collaboration).

As we look forward to the new year the wheel keeps on turning and lots of great stuff to come…