Rating:
7.3
Deathstars - Night Electric Night
30 January 2009


Disc I
01. Chertograd
02. Night Electric Night
03. Death Dies Hard
04. The Mark Of The Gun
05. Via The End
06. Blood Stains Blondes
07. Babylon
08. The Fuel Ignites
09. Arclight
10. Venus In Arms
11. Opium

Limited Gold Edition bonus tracks:
12. Night Electric Night [The Night Ignites remix]
13. Via The End [piano version]
14. Night Electric Night [feat. Adrian Erlandsson]

Disc II [Gold Edition DVD]
01. Death Dies Hard
02. Virtue to Vice
03. Blitzkrieg
04. Cyanide
05. Syndrome
06. Synthetic Generation
07. Making of Death Dies Hard
08. Making of Virtue to Vice
09. Making of Blitzkrieg
10. Making of Cyanide
11. Extras


Gothic and Industrial music are so synonymous with each other these days. Bands such as Evereve, Crematory, Darkseed, Paradise Lost, etc., have already dabbled in it, with varying successes. Deathstars are no exception. Their knack for creating modern, catchy, easy-on-the-ears metal never ceases to amaze me…oops! Did I just say never? A few years ago I would have happily replied in the affirmative, but regrettably I am not so optimistic at the present time. Synthetic Generation was a good debut, Termination Bliss was outstanding, and Night Electric Night is, quite frankly, a letdown...

Quashing any pessimistic thoughts that might arise in your head, I would like to stress that Night Electric Night is still a good album, despite its flaws; if you look at the sea of nonsensical drivel that this genre is unfortunately plagued with, it stands its ground well. The signature Deathstars sound is still prevalent throughout the album, and that's always a good thing. The Stockholm quintet is never expected to create complex music along the lines of Meshuggah, they do a decent job regardless, and this is no different with Night Electric Night. Whiplasher's "booming" voice is powerful as always and every instrument can be heard properly. So, all the ingredients for another Deathstars special is there, but do they add up together conclusively to produce that special album? Not really…

The problem lies in the lack of "natural progression" in their music. We all expect a certain evolution in the sound of a band from one album to another, which keeps the music from being monotonous. Unfortunately, this is not the case here. Yet, for all it's worth, it starts off pretty decently. The opener, "Chertograd," combines all of Deathstars' strong elements; simplistic yet powerful guitar riffs driving the song forward while being deliciously sugar-coated with pleasant synthesizers in addition to being enhanced with the trademark Whiplasher onslaught. The following title track is just as impressive, if not more, but the sparkling gem in the album has to be "Via The End," which shows the first glimpses of some kind of evolution in their music, a slower-paced song with beautiful melodies and thoughtful lyrics put into the mix. Overall, the first half of the album rounds up pretty good. What follows in the proceeding half, however, is a bunch of uninspired, uninteresting songs (excluding "Venus In Arms") which don't stick to your memory at all. I don't even remember their names correctly! The songs are so unvaried and bland that I dare say that these tracks were probably leftovers from Termination Bliss! Talk about a tale of two halves…

Night Electric Night is a good albeit seriously-flawed album, there's no questioning that. Diehard fans will still probably gobble up this one, but the rest of us will be left with the feeling of dissatisfaction. With this album, the band has taken their first steps towards mediocrity. Hopefully, it will also be their last. Until then, I can always listen to Termination Bliss...

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Deathstars
Album: Night Electric Night


 


written by MechanisT | 25.12.2010


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



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mariano - 27.12.2010 at 19:28  
Good review.
I agree on that Termination Bliss was better, or at least it did surprise me, which I can't say the same about Night Electric Night. Anyway, my favorite song is Arclight but as you said, this song sounds like the previous album.
AnGina-- - 11.03.2011 at 22:32  
Well, I agree with the fact Venus In Arms is the best song of the album (or so I assumed it has been written), but I cannot agree that the rest of the songs are uninspired and don't stick in your head. For example, songs such as Cherograd, Night Electic Nigh, Mark Of The Gun and Blood Staines Blondes, Arclight and of course the mentioned Venus In Arms were the songs that created a great impression after the first listening and stuck in my head till this date.

Termination Bliss is however their best work and Night Electric Night surely didn't surpass it, but it's not as forgettable as this review had told us IMHO. Not to forger that album as a wholesome has also great artwork and for me, when I actually buy an album, a physical piece of compact disc, it's nice to see some eye candy too. Overall, had to also say I kinda like their sometimes rather cryptic lyrics.

So overall, I couldn't say NEN was a letdown. Maybe I'm just so used of really really bad albums by some bands that have previously completely let me down, and well, Deathstars & NEN is totally not in that section.
MechanisT - 12.03.2011 at 12:18  
Written by AnGina-- on 11.03.2011 at 22:32

Well, I agree with the fact Venus In Arms is the best song of the album (or so I assumed it has been written), but I cannot agree that the rest of the songs are uninspired and don't stick in your head. For example, songs such as Cherograd, Night Electic Nigh, Mark Of The Gun and Blood Staines Blondes, Arclight and of course the mentioned Venus In Arms were the songs that created a great impression after the first listening and stuck in my head till this date.

Termination Bliss is however their best work and Night Electric Night surely didn't surpass it, but it's not as forgettable as this review had told us IMHO. Not to forger that album as a wholesome has also great artwork and for me, when I actually buy an album, a physical piece of compact disc, it's nice to see some eye candy too. Overall, had to also say I kinda like their sometimes rather cryptic lyrics.

So overall, I couldn't say NEN was a letdown. Maybe I'm just so used of really really bad albums by some bands that have previously completely let me down, and well, Deathstars & NEN is totally not in that section.


Hey, what can I say? I can understand where you're coming from. As I already mentioned in my review, there will be people who'll still find it more than enjoyable, but as for the majority of us, well, that's another story.

In your first paragraph, you mentioned that I've criticized the other songs, save for Venus In Arms, but that's definitely NOT the case! If you read my review properly, I explicitly stated that the first half of the album rounds up pretty good. I even went on at some lengths describing some of the standout tracks in the first album, so I don't agree with you in that respect. With regards to the latter half, I'll give you an example: compare "Blood Stains Blondes" with "Motherzone" from Termination Bliss, the similarity is baffling to my ears, hence my insistence that some of the songs are recycled in the vein of Termination Bliss. As for "Venus In Arms" being my favourite, well, that's not true either! That's reserved for "Via The End". In my opinion, Via the End > Night Electric Night > Chertograd > Venus In Arms. Additionally, I want to remind you that I have in no way mentioned Night Electric Night to be a forgettable album, but a flawed one to be exact. I even stated that despite it's faults, it's still a good album!

In the end, though, it's all about perspectives, and I respect your opinion, but some apparent misunderstandings needed to be addressed. I don't have any qualms or problems with your issues either as you are entitled to your own opinion.
AnGina-- - 13.03.2011 at 11:14  
It's okay, my reply wasn't an attack on your or your review per se, just sharing my story and view on it. I simply don't think any of the songs are forgettable, I mentioned Archlight there, I could also say the same for Fuel Ignites, Babylon with its hauting ambient, and of course Venus In Arms. And about Venus In Arms I mentioned that I agree with you being one of the songs that pops out, well, at least for me it is. I understand you didn't write a bad review, just wanted to share that I find the first and the latter half both enjoyable.

But then again, I do confess, I love Deathstars, so my ears probably hear it differently And well, gotta mention also that I first heard the songs from NEN on their concert, not on the CD and the whole seeing them live experience blending with the songs effected my preception of it. Or so I assume
MechanisT - 13.03.2011 at 12:19  
Written by AnGina-- on 13.03.2011 at 11:14

It's okay, my reply wasn't an attack on your or your review per se, just sharing my story and view on it. I simply don't think any of the songs are forgettable, I mentioned Archlight there, I could also say the same for Fuel Ignites, Babylon with its hauting ambient, and of course Venus In Arms. And about Venus In Arms I mentioned that I agree with you being one of the songs that pops out, well, at least for me it is. I understand you didn't write a bad review, just wanted to share that I find the first and the latter half both enjoyable.

But then again, I do confess, I love Deathstars, so my ears probably hear it differently And well, gotta mention also that I first heard the songs from NEN on their concert, not on the CD and the whole seeing them live experience blending with the songs effected my preception of it. Or so I assume


Hehe I know.
It's always refreshing to see a well-constructed reaction stemming from a review. This proves that people actually read my reviews, and I find that heartening. Again, it's all about perspectives, there are no black and white in subjective matters, so I can't really say that you're wrong to think the way you're thinking. With that being said, please don't take offence and dismiss this rambling of an old fool!
AnGina-- - 13.03.2011 at 12:31  
I surely won't, I have been around for long enoguh I respect other peple's opinions as well as I wish mine is.

Actually, I was quite surprised reading your review had had only 1 comment.... I was and am quite sure there's more of us here who gave NEN a listen....
s_t_s - 23.11.2011 at 16:33  
I love Termination Bliss so much that i guess i expected at least as good an album with this one but in the end this is my least favourite album by deathstars. Like most of you wrote above, it's not a bad album (except maybe for Babylon that I simply cannot listen to!) but it's pretty average as well. Still love Opium or Chertograd but expect more from the next album or I'll totally lose interest in this band.

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