SynthPoP For The Masses
TOC 2006 (1/3, 2/3, 3/3)

Various Artists - elektrisch! (Sampler)

It's great having small labels like Major Records which honor electronic music with the release of a compilation. It's also welcome having rare remixes of the songs.

This compilation includes all kinds of electronic music of classic, poppy, very melodic, melancholy, very dark and industrial styles. Therefore it invites the listener on a little journey through the cosmos of electronic music.
Well, all seems to be perfect, but I would prefer this compilation didn't include some old versions from 2003 and older (e.g. Wolfsheim ? Aproaching Lightspeed, Soft Cell ? The Night or NamNamBulu ? Memories). These songs were already available on earlier released compilations. Therefore I was a little disappointed receiving old stuff. The only real new stuff is the extended club version of De/vision's 'The End' which is a track of their latest album. Therefore this compilation is a great idea but with antiquated stuff.

Date of Release: 3rd March 2006
Rating: 2 megafons

Andy Bell - Electric Blue

This is the first solo album by Andy Bell of Erasure after his co-production with the Greek band IN_VOX ('Will I Ever?').
The title 'Electric Blue' describes it all. It is electronic music in common time which tells about love and relationships. I was wondering how similar this release would sound to all the Erasure releases and it lets me assume that Andy Bell had much more influence on Erasure's compositions, as I thought.

On this release Andy Bell still convinces with his powerful and wide-range vocals. I am very happy about the fact that Andy also mostly passes on the use of his ? in my opinion ? horrible falsetto. He also invited guest artists like Claudia Brücken (Propaganda) and Jake Shears (Scissor Sisters). This was a good decision as otherwise this album would have too few facets and would be uninspired on the whole.

Finally, I have to say that it is a very melodic album, which sounds very solid and experienced but does not really include any striking highlights or innovations.

Date of Release: 9th September 2005
Rating: 3 megafons