T. and company return with a double dose of Diverje
music for your listening pleasure. This is a two CD set that offers
the Amphibian album on disc 1 and the Amphibian
remix album on disc 2.
The album is titled Amphibian, there are pictures
of frogs all over the packaging and there's even samples of frogs all
troughout the CD. Sound odd? It's not. The frog and swamp type sounds
give the album a unique atmosphere.
The music offered on the Amphibian album (disc
1) is heavy and aggressive electro-industrial with malfunctioning haywire
electronic programming, slamming beats, noise, samples, dark melodies
and extremely distorted vocals.
Each song manages to sound different, but all fit together with a similar
style. They each do a great job of blending different elements within
them for variety. There's a lot happening in the music, and it all requires
repeated listens to take it all in.
This isn't typical sounding electro-industrial music that you've heard
countless of times already. There's a somewhat original edge to it that
makes it stand out of the crowd. It might not grab you at first due
to its slightly different approach, but after a few spins you will want
to hear it more and more.
All of the songs here are good, but a few stand out more than others.
I especially like "Amphibian", "Red-Eyed", "Stronger", "Siliconed"
"You Suck" and "Re-Animate".
As much as I like disc 1, I like disc 2 even more. Disc 2 is the Amphibian
remix album and offers more of an EBM kick to everything that ups the
energy level and gives the songs club appeal.
The remixes are done by The Mercy Cage, E.S.R.,
Aghast View, Bio-Mechanical Degeneration,
Auspex, Data Raper, Fr/Action,
Tecnoman S.F., Babel-17, System
Syn and Croc Shop. Each and every remix here
is great, and really give a new twist to the songs.
Unfortunately, some of my favorite songs such as "Stronger", "Siliconed,
"You Suck" and "Re-Animate" don't have remixes. Actually,
only seven songs from disc 1 are remixed, with several versions of each
making for a total of fourteen tracks on disc 2.
The bottom line is that you're given a lot of music with this Amphibian
two CD set. You're given two CDs for the price of one. You can't beat
On a final note, the only thing I would like to see different in future
Diverje music is less distorted vocals. Tommy T. has
a good deep powerful voice that doesn't need to rely so heavily on effects.
I actually feel his emotions more when his singing is clear since it
sounds more raw and real.
Diverje is the electro-industrial/EBM project of DSBP
label owner Tommy T. Rapisardi. And this On Skin
recording is a solid release. The instant you hear the first song "Regret"
you get a good idea of what this entire album has to offer. The music
is a combination of electro-industrial, EBM, experimental and noise.
Frantic and manic electro sounds go haywire along with hard crunchy
beats over dark melodies. The songs play at a mid-temp to fast pace
keeping everything interesting and never boring. But the varied layering
and experimental noise elements prevent this music from really working
One slight complaint I have with this overall recording are the vocals.
The main problem with them is that theyíre overly processed with an
unappealing distortion sound. And while I like distorted vocals, the
distortion effects used here sound a little too muddy and muffled. You
can somewhat hear Tommyís natural voice behind the effects, and it sounds
fairly good. I canít help but think that some of these songs would have
been a lot better without any effects used on the vocals.
Whatís most appealing about this CD is the music. Most of the songs
offered here feature some great variety and ideas in them. Each track
manages to sound somewhat different from the one before it. Some songs
are heavy and aggressive, while others are a little lighter and laid
back. Everything is creative and interesting. The one instrumental "Cover
Up (Vocal Strip Extendo)" is especially enjoyable with all
that happens in it.
On top of offering eleven new songs, thereís also five remixes of songs
from previous Diverje albums. Unfortunately, I only
really like the ones provided by Converter and Ionic
Vision. The ones by Cydonia, Pain
Station and Thine
Eyes donít interest me all that much and sort of drag down
the last part of the CD.
As with most CDs, some songs stand out more than others. My favorites
here include: "Regret", "On Skin", "Stimulate", "In My Shell", "Cover
Up (Vocal Strip Extendo)", "Disconnect (Converter Remix)" and
"Scream For Me (Ionic Mayhem At Maximum)". Itís actually the more
melodic and structured songs here such as "On Skin" and "In
My Cell" that appeal to me the most. Tommy shows exceptional song
writing and music development on these two tracks. A lot of the other
tracks are a little more experimental and noisy for my tastes. While
I do like them, I just personally prefer slightly more structure to
the songs that I listen to.
The bottom line is that this is a good effort by Tommy, but in the end
it seems a little too ambitious. Basically, it seems like heís trying
to do too much here. Some tracks are electro-industrial, some EBM, some
experimental noise and some remixes. While everything is fairly consistent
in its sound, I just see more potential in some of the tracks than others.
I think that Tommy should maybe make Diverje a more
focused project that sticks to similar music throughout. I would personally
like to see him embrace the sound of "On Skin" and "In
My Cell" more in the future for this project. And maybe create
a different project for more of the experimental noise music.