Straight from the sunny-reaches of the Costa del Sol comes something both inspired and dark. Chainsaw Joe is a newcomer to the electronic world of music but his sounds are misleading, as it feels more like listening to a seasoned -pro pulling the strings here.
You will here various echoes of inspiration throughout ’44’, most of which are from late 70’s to late 80’s horror and action moves. This is not a new thing, but how has this fledgling artist fared with an already well covered genre?
From the intro of the first track, ’44 Night’, you will soon find that the artist is out to impress. And impress, he does. ’44 Night’ begins like a Harold Faltermeyer production, most notably his ‘Axel F’ piece. It then evolves into a heavy drum and seductive-synth laden record that will easily have you reaching for the light switch. This is a track for the night, and what lurks within the darkness.
The title of the next track leaves nothing to the imagination of what you are to expect. ‘Evangelos’, however, is simply not just a tilt of the cap to one of the worlds greatest electronic composers, it is also a wonderful piece of electronic genius. You will feel nothing but awe for both the vision and the passion used to create this majestic marvel. Its minimalism will leave you spell-bound. A wonderful record that cannot be left of list of chill out classics.
‘May Be Synthetic’ is as dark as they come. Darkwave has really grew in strength, this year, and to have another great piece to come along is very exciting. This is haunting as well as electrifying. The overall sound evokes a battle of sounds, between Jan Hammer and John Carpenter. Synths, guitars and aggression, it has it all. Did the artist have a cold-blooded cyborg or relentless replicant hell bent on redemption in mind when putting this together? Or is he one himself? Either way, listen with caution.
Thump, Thump. Thump, Thump. Is that the sound emanating from your speakers or your heartbeat? Upon listening I would say both. ‘Punk Stalking Cruise’ is the vigilante’s theme. Late night street protection has never sounded so appealing. Dark car, dark clothes, dark night, dark sounds. All ingredients for a one man army who is fuelled by nothing more than justice. The only thing missing is a pair of dark shades. The streets will instantly feel a safer place after listening to this great record.
The final piece is ‘Trust’, which starts with a great snippet from a great film, ‘the Thing’. Great drums again from Chainsaw Joe, who has a way ail arranging his records. And can you imagine ‘Trust’ being on a horror soundtrack? How fitting it would be. It is also a fitting end to a very impressive debut.
Hitting the ground running is an expression, and a very apt one for Chainsaw Joe. Taking the bull by its horns and using every last ounce of energy to tame this beast is what the artist has done. And very well.
After listening, you have to ask yourself one question: Do you feel lucky?