Emotronic Reviews

 

emopress.jpg
journo pig, tabloid scum, call them what you like, journalists do not have a very good reputation and kHz the band that I interviewed the other day are getting a little de-pressed. Not that they have received any adverse press, but for any band trying to reach the giddy heights they deserve the press can often be a hindrance. I could predict their untimely demise from the music world, I could destroy what they have strived to build with a thoughtless cruel word, but if I did that I would be distracting you from the most innovative and eclectic music that I've heard in a long time.

Journalistic sins are just not my bag although I do love a good story and the best stories are often deeply rooted in fact. The facts as they stand are simple, take three extremely talented musicians from very different backgrounds, marry the sounds that they each produce, arrange it intelligently, add an electronic edge and kick in some bass that shifts the floor, throw in the voice of an angel and there you have the new kHz album EMOTRONIC.

I'm not sure if I can let EMOTRONIC get away with a simple pat on the back. KHz has been hailed as the new Portishead but in reality the music and the band go beyond the realms of the electronic groups we have come to know and love. The purity of the vocals, raw and husky to sweet and harmonious, are provided by Raiana, the front woman of the band. A pint sized, Hispanic, eat your heart out Pammy Lee, who's enthusiasm for her band, the live performance and her art, surpass even her stunning looks.

So what is the backbone of this Y2k compliant, Faster Pussy Cat Kill Kill, and Diva of good sound? Take one step on a joyful musical tangent and there you have her partner in crime who goes by the name of Pull. And so he did with the strings of this band when he joined with Raiana and Denny, who plays live bass and keyboards; he's bit of a rocker who oozes real musical integrity, has a quiet charm and you can tell what his feelings are towards the band and it's other members.

Behind his electronic mask of genius, Pull has a track record for changing our Everything But The Girl to the Bare Naked Ladies. But then what would you expect from someone who has an industry resume worth paying good money for; Musician, DJ, Producer, remixer working with the aforementioned greats along with adolescent Alanis and that young whippersnapper Brandy. Could any combination have ever been so perfect? You need look no further than this album to prove my appraisal. My advice is to listen to track 4 entitled BOBBY. I can promise that you'll be overjoyed with the arrangement, which catches you at every turn. You just get over comfortable with the beautiful ambient vocals to have it broken by an off key strumming, before it rips you in half with enough rock to turn Kiss's cheek, and the thing is that you don't know it has happened. This goes on all through the album, where the little twists and turns have your brain catching yourself looking for it because it's so well put together.

Track 5 Accelerator Pt.3, is totally different to it's predecessor, the vocals are provided by their photographer no less, and English man in New York(to my woman in the same place), who philosophizes about art and music with a hard house beat riding underneath. Reminiscent, and I only mean that, of Underworld. TRAVELING OVER gives us more of Raiana doing what she does best but with a serious drum edge that then flows straight into house developing next a hint of pop before whizzing you right back to drum. And to the last on my list of favorites, which could go through the whole of EMOTRONIC but there are photographs to put in. Flick the remote until you get to track 11 WRONG AGAIN which has some choice musical moments(those of you from the green and pleasant land will know just what I mean), can't even begin to explain what I mean.

So without further ado I suggest you either log onto their site, and do yourself a favor by purchasing the thing there. I bid you all adieu until the next time.

CMJ (4/3/00, p.34) - "Dark, disillusioned and dangerously sexy...a trip-hop tragedy made from industrial guitar angst, gothic keyboard washes, and electronic drum precision.

 
emo-cover-300.jpgOutburn magazine: Female fronted melodic Electro ethereal. The music of kHz has a true lyrical depth that zaps me into feeling something deep inside my inner core. Consistently expanding upon their emotionally expanding style with each new release, Emotronic is no exception. The album consists of downtempo electronic mind candy highlighting Raiana's sensual vocals. The programming on "same as" and "open me" utilizes well placed minimalist compositions that bring her intonation and superb lyrical delivery to the forefront of each song. The grittier side of kHz comes out on "what you want" and "the ballad of Mary Beth" with Raiana aggressively tearing at the words over a steady guitar driven background. Adding yet another dimension to the album,"accelerator pt.III" is an uber cool monologue exploring the evolution of house music, done to a classic dance beat. Each song provides a unique way of tapping into the emotional receptors inside of us all, making Emotronic the perfect compliment to an introspective night alone. kHz is highly recommended to those looking for electronic music with a pure human soul.

The Culture magazine: This New York trio's sound is described in the title of their latest release. A new face on the darkwave scene, the diversely talented group bring gothic beauty and reznor-esque dynamics together in a post-industrial playground. whispery cuts like "Open Me" and ethereal cover of "Always On My Mind" seep through the skin, providing the albums most enticing moments. Lurching, guitar-heavy songs like "what you want" Don't quite have the same luster but should nevertheless please those seeking a little aggro in their electro. While the groups dancier numbers are littered with influences from drum n bass to chemical beats. Besides being damn nice to look at, singer Raiana possess the listener. She's a sensual presence teetering between utter frailty and ready to strike volatility. These dynamics are best put to use in "Bobby", a hauntingly dramatic song about confronting one's deepest fears, and one of several strangely wonderful tracks that make this album a highlight of the new millennial crop.

Open them!: This album starts off in a way that mimicks the way you would sound like if you were popping it into the cd player. With the lead vocalist begging you, no daring you, no hypnotizing you to open her. you almost fall into listening to this album like you would begin to fall asleep. Much like a Freddy Kruger nightmare it almost is sweet and rosey until you realize something is not right and all of a sudden your arms fall off and in place of them are roach like tentacles. Put simply this band rocks and the complexity of the emotions thrown at you by Raiana make it all worth the time it took to listen to it.

kHz's second recording Emotronic opens with several minutes of slightened and sultry sound composed of female vocals, and wavering and faint background music. The atmosphere slowly rises into a rhythmic and floating sonance, from where everything begins to glide and extend and fly. The music is comprised of numerous electronic elements all worked into a softened and subtle sweep of sound, and the vocals over all bring everything to a sensual end. The presence is understated and the approach is relatively fresh, and with such the recording may remain as one of the best of the year.

KHZ "Emotronic" Propain Records by Craig Harvey . They say that variety is the spice of life and KHZ's second release "Emotronic" proves just that. Consisting of only three members, Denny (bass/keyboards), Pull (guitar/ keyboards/programming), and Raiana (vocals), they have managed to weave together a compelling mixture of styles and sounds with a few surprises thrown in as well. The first track "Begin" is a sample of an electronic hatchway opening, and sets the mood for the next track "Open Me." It's beautiful combination of minimalistic, ambient electronica enveloped by Raiana's seductive vocals flows over and through you with a gentle caress. The next track "What You Want" starts off in a similar vein, but then a dark throbbing guitar line changes the direction of the song, disappearing and reappearing between the soft electronic beat. A similar instance occurs on the track "Bobby" when a screaming barrage of harsh guitar cuts into the song from almost out of nowhere. KHZ takes another turn on "Accelerator Pt. III." Spoken word (courtesy of their photographer) over a pounding techno /house beat. What a great combination. They again shift gears with "The Ballad Of Mary Beth" in which Raiana's vocals change into that of a little girl before becoming angry rants. This is definitely the strangest song on the CD. I have to admit that the highlight of this CD is Raiana's vocal talent. With the exception of the aforementioned song, her voice is elegant, almost fragile at times, and oh so sexy. Just listen to their cover of "Always On My Mind" as it overflows with emotion and beauty. Some of the other tracks that really stood out were, "Wrong Again, and The Deeper I go. "An interesting blend of gothic melodies and techno beats, propelled by the near-angelic vocals of Raiana. Standouts include 'What you Want,' the engergetic 'Travelling Over,' the kick-ass 'Ballad of Mary Beth,' and the haunting 'Always on my Mind' (where Raiana's vocals really stand out). It's really hard to make comparisons, but I will say that my first time through the CD, it reminded me very much of darker, less distorted version of Shirley Manson's 'Garbage."

emopress3.jpg
kHz - Emotronic- Such a good band. I first listened to them because of their association with Mindless Self Indulgence. After listening to their stuff I just fell in love, the programming is amazing and their songs are beautiful. The vocalist Raiana (she's the gal on the Brougham CD Cover) has a beautiful voice that will just awe you. Give these guys a listen if you want to hear some really soft soothing electronic music or if you're into trip hop and that kinda stuff, screw it... just listen.

The Sentimentalist magazine: The newly released Emotronic has a bit of everything: Ethereal elctronics, haunting vocals, and heart-pounding rhythms. The CD runs the gambit of emotions from despair to fear to hatred and beyond. Much of the credit for this emotional roller-coaster ride can be given to Raiana's vocals, which are far too sensual to be called angelic. The album opens with an ethereal sound with " Begin" and "Open me". By "what you want" the music picks up in both rhythm and intensity. " Bobby", arguably one of the best tracks on the album, contains a nightmarish quality easily conveyed in the vocals and the jarring 'plinks' of piano keys scattered throughout the music. One of the most surprising tracks on the album is "Always on my mind". kHz does this old Willie Nelson standard much credit by keeping the original feel of the song and complimenting it with subdued orchestration and Raiana's vocals. Many of the tracks make you want to get up and dance. I found myself unable to sit still during much of it and was pleasantly disappointed when the album was over. I wanted more. Emotronic (emotional electronic) is exactly that.