Spektor Baal! What an overdue artist to be reviewed. Always looking for an ear to hear his tracks, always a pleasure to talk to. He hails from Latvia though currently residing in Brooklyn, NY, and is always keen to lend a helping hand to anyone that needs it.
Spektor Baal was born in Riga, Latvia. He traveled the world at an early age, from New York to L.A., and Jamaica to Moscow. He settled in Moscow in 1994. While in Moscow, he was a singer-songwriter for a progressive metal band and regularly played on Russian MTV at that time. Leaving Moscow in 2000, he traveled much of Europe and finally returned to Brooklyn, where he currently resides. His current musical inspiration is primarily mystical and supernatural experiences, and his more recent work mixes arcane symbols with modern music and has been compared to the Eurythmics.
What started you in electronic music?
I started doing electronic music when I moved back to Brooklyn from Moscow. I had a Prog Metal band in Russia, and we were even featured on Russian MTV. When I came back to the States I started building my own recording studio and working alone, and that’s how the process started.
Early 80’s New Wave, Mercyful Fate, King Diamond, and Judas Priest. Also early Dokken.
Favorite Hardware and VST?
My favorite Hardware is probably the Waldorf Q. It has a very unique sound. No VST has ever emulated it correctly in my opinion. I love the U-he Diva VST. It is all over the Ancient Serpents E.P. I like it because it has very rich mid tones and is very easy to program.
Where would you like the scene to go?
I would like the scene to evolve to a NEW 80’s sound. More experimentation and art making still keeping the nostalgia, rather than just trying to copy the old 80s sound.
Anything special about you?
I like walking cats. I’m a cat man. I love to study the occult. It is part of me and my art. I am combining my two loves, 80’s and the occult. I also like to to help people get to their goals when it comes to music. I know how it feels when a person needs help to reach a goal, and I also learn from the process. It works two ways.
If there is something you want to do, just do it. When it comes to art and expressing yourself, age doesn’t matter. You can start whenever you want.
Ancient Serpents EP Review:
Ancient Serpents, great track to start the EP with as it’s got a very eerie mood and great play on vocal content that makes you feel a bit witchy!
Demons in the box, mastered a bit better than Ancient Serpents, more full sounding. An ode to 70’s horror film classics. Minimal, yet it’s got everything in place. The right sounds and the perfect song length.
The Upside Down, reminds me of an arcade video game. Slight elements of chiptune, mixed with analog synthesis makes this a very addictive track. As addictive as throwing quarters down to beat that final boss in that arcade game.
Shells, a slower ballad. Brilliant display of what good mixing can sound like. Everything is clear and placed nicely in the track.
Night Dwellers, a darker departure from the rest of the EP, combining elements from the previous songs. A bit dark, a bit horror movie influenced, nostalgic melodic progressions.
Shadow, hit with those fantastic vocals again. Great way to finish up. Leaves you optimistic for what is in store for the full album.
We see the EP beginning and with vocal tracks provided by the Spektor himself! The vocal clarity is perfect, like a well seasoned 80’s glam rocker with a backdrop of cold synthesizers. Not a terrible way to end my day. It’s a short and sweet very listener friendly EP that may make it’s way to my everyday listening schedule. The track I’ve found myself listening to the most was Ancient Serpents. Great track, great hook.
Overall it’s a very minimal sound despite a few areas where a few extra elements come together to flesh out the track.
Is it the best thing I’ve heard all year? No, however the potential for greatness is there and with the right direction could prove to be an artist on everyone’s radar.
The title track had me so pumped that Recall FM’s label artist Straplocked Society is doing a remix of it! Stay tuned for that…
Album as is: 75/100
Potential to be amazing: 100/100
Chance of being possessed by an ancient evil: 82/100