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Press & Reviews

Reflections of Darkness review of Never Get To You

February 2, 2009

EMPTY is the musical outfit of Australian-based musicians Aaron Potter and Daniel Brunet, started as a studio-only project in 2005. The 2006 release of the debut EP ‘Open Aeon’ gained them great recognition from every corner of the world, resulting in EMPTY pushing their sound onto a stage with additional live drummer and bassist. 2008 even saw two releases of the Australian workaholics in the shape of ‘Aeon Xpand’, an EP, highlighting a selection of remixes and one new track; as well as the single ‘Never Get To You’, which is a little appetizer for what’s expecting their loyal fellowship on the forthcoming, yet untitled debut album, scheduled for 2009.

Title track ‘Never get to you’ starts in a relaxed wax with a basic sequence atop a reluctant melodic current. Then a bubble bursts open, releasing palpable frigid ambience, surrounding the first words of a somewhat powerless voice of a scarred mind. A fidgety rhythmic pattern arises, growing further in complexity to form a consistently bubbling and evolving fundament of glitchy and engaging electronics for the forlorn melodic textures and thoughtful lyrics. They seem to tell us about a man, trying to run away to forget, yet distant voices from the past always catch up with him, reminding him of how painful it was, so it always seems he hasn’t done a single move, no matter how hard he tries. “…I’m running away yet standing still.” Being overly complex is not the credo of DISMANTLED’s take on ‘Never get to you’, but while it’s rather simplistic in the rhythmic department, it’s creating some majestic moments with additional strings and piano parts.

‘Forgotten Dreams’, the second of the new tracks, marks new sonic territory for EMPTY with frantic, drum’n’bass-tinged arrays of broken beat work, working with a plethora of layers, you have to unravel first. Then the vocals that, despite their mechanic alienation, bring forth real emotions to the listener: Desperation, hopelessness, and disillusion, while being drenched in a never-ending stream of all-enveloping melancholy, cast into smooth pad and choral sounds. Last of the new tracks is a cover version of ‘King of Kings’ by Australian band THE MODELS from 1985. Adepts of the original might recognize the electronic equivalent to some of the sounds, but it’s kicking things off with an industrial introduction presenting, in part, very rough, sharp-edged beats. The vast soundscapes coming in later sometimes feel like the ebb and flow of the waves, even more intense in collaboration with the chorus, when the rhythms become more understated and the vocals seem awash by the melodic waves.

I’m amazed by how the sound of EMPTY has evolved in such a comparatively short time-span to the cutting-edge sound it is today. Still, I feel, they don’t get as much attention as they deserve. More people have to hear the music of these talented guys and who knows, at some point in the future, there might be a chance for some European live dates, perhaps even in Germany. Would love to see that happening!

Rating: 9/10 (90%)

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The new album "Surfacing" is now available

Empty - Surfacing

A breath of badly needed fresh air.

- Rick Gallo (Arable Farmland - Chicago, USA)

Complex and melodic, with an underlying current of desperation.

- Charles Fenech (ANGELTHEORY - Melbourne, Australia)

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