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pulcher femina
shadows of the lovers
decadance records   2001
  see also
decadance records website
pulcher femina website

album rating: 2
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submitted by carl jenkinson on 20-Feb-2002

This is the second release from Italian band Pulcher Femina (AKA Roberto Conforti) on the Italian Decadance label, following from 1999's "Fallen Angel". If marketed correctly, this album should appeal to fans of such established electro acts as Evil's Toy/T.O.Y. or even VNV Nation. Indeed, the T.O.Y. stalwart Volker Lutz could almost be considered the patron saint of this album as not only was it recorded in his Soundstage studio, Lutz also provides the storming mix of "Scream & Die" that closes the album & it's surely no coincidence that "Autumn Wind" sounds as if it could have been taken off either of the German band's last two albums. Where this album differs from most of it's type is the near absence of any of the harsh elements that mark most electro. In their place is a typically Italian dose of romantic/darkwave styles, similar to the excellent fellow Italians The Frozen Autumn. This even applies to Conforti's smooth vocals which means that this album could well appeal to a more gothic audience than might usually listen to anything electro-based. Whilst a lot of electro seems to have the dancefloor as it's primary concern, I get the impression that this is not the case here as the more thoughtful approach also rewards home listening more than is usually the case. That's not to say, though, that tracks such as "Everywhere Was Cold" or especially the short "Unreal", the longer "Take Me" (with additional vocals from Daniela Bruno of gothic/darkwave act Miriam) & "Obsession" shouldn't warm a few clubbers up. I can also see this album having a much greater appeal to females than is usually the case with electro music. "Nice Day", for example, is a definite feel good piece, very optimistic although the bittersweet lyrics of love & loss mean that there are a few clouds in this sunny sky. "The End" is a most downbeat & melancholy song with Daniela's chorus only adding to the sense of despair & sadness. Despite a greater rhythmic presence, "Dust" does little to raise a smile (although it is another good track) & neither does the slow moving "Lost Forever".

In the crowded Electro scene, Pulcher Femina undoubtedly have a style different from most of their contemporaries. Doubtless, much of this is due to their geographic differences from the host of German bands but this is one to check out ASAP.


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