(From Maelstrom issue 51 2007)


review by: Chaim Drishner

By Any Other Name Sunwheel

Less then six months after releasing Omog, this Tasmanian devil by the odd name of 7 (yes, the number Seven), who has been creating under his Diable Amoreux moniker for quite some time now, has released his latest effort, all by himself, from beginning to end, from writing and playing all the instruments, to doing all the recording work, down to painting the front cover and releasing it all as a professional-grade CD.

7's latest is without a doubt also his most accessible offering to date. By Any Other Name Sunwheel is blatantly electronic, from start to finish, and in a way it pays homage to bands such as Sisters of Mercy, Psychic TV, with more than a hint of influential bands among which one can hear touches of Joy Division. It rings many bells and echoes many 80ss new-wave bands such as Front 242, a little bit of Bauhaus, Minimal Compact, Fad Gadget, et cetera. In addition, there's always this macabre theatrical spice or quality present in every single Diable Amoreux release, no matter what stylistic direction the artist has chosen to tread, and in that sense one cannot shake the feeling there's a lot in common between Diable Amoreux and the eccentric and mysterious Devil Doll.

Any of you thirty-something music fiends would easily recognize many of your favorite dark 80s bands in Diable Amoreux's recent work. It's fun and very much nostalgic, if nothing else.

Coupled with Diable Amoreux's certain and ever-present twist, the music it could have been easily tagged as "Gothic rock" has been infused with healthy amounts of peculiarity, which is 7's brand: if it's not fucked-up at least to a certain degree, it's not Diable Amoreux's doing.

The songs emanate twisted happiness; the semi-theatrical vocals are dark and strange; the song structure is askew and not always quite right. Overall, the music lends a feeling of uneasiness and mild lunacy (as is expected from any work by 7) and is usually much more interesting then your usual Goth rock albums out there. There's always those high-pitched screeches 7 is known for (to the extent of infamy by some who may regard his whines and screeches as virtually unbearable, but adored by this reviewer) to spice up the music.

The lyrics are intriguing; they deal with the sad fact that an ancient spiritual symbol such as the sun wheel has been abused by Nazi Germany and since those dark times till these very days it is being despised and frowned upon without justification, or something like that.

By Any Other Name Sunwheel is a unique beast in a barren landscape charged with originality and emanated nostalgia all around. (8/10)