V/A - My Dear Freaks - CD - 15 tracks - La Defuncion / Caustic Records - 2004

Initiated by La Defuncion and Caustic Records this compilation presents exclusive tracks from thirteen Hispanic acts with an intro and an outro composed by each of the curators. Apart from the few projects already reviewed on these pages, most of the participants are unknown to me but all offer, nonetheless, an interesting perspective of the Spanish dark underground scene.

The music covers a variety of genres ranging from Cold Meat inspired ambient, medieval, heavenly voices to neofolk tunes. Despite this apparent disparity, all the tracks display a common musical quality and there should be something interesting for everyone on this disc.
As for all compilations of this kind, some tracks stand out more than the others for the review/listener, although this selection is purely subjective and personal. I was, of course, particularly pleased to find a tracks from the Catalonian acts Ô Paradis and Circe. On the dark, murky 'La Isla de Barro' Demian presents all the usual elements that make his music so unique. Circe surprised me with 'Sirena', a track that sounds like a cross between Gitane Demone and Gus Gus... something radically different from what I have heard on her promising demo album. 'Claustrofilla', the strange instrumental soundtrack from Chaos Condensed and 'Skallafjord', a epic folk ballad from Cromleck are also worth mentioning. However, the track I find the most outstanding on this compilation, is the contribution from Trobar De Morte. 'La Princesa Dolça de Provença' is a superb neoclassic/medieval inspired piece that is literally illuminated by the beauty of the female vocals...

All in all this compilation presents a fine selection of tracks from a host of unknown artists and it is a good starting point to discover the many hidden riches of the Spanish underground.

Ian C.
Winter 2004/5

Contacts :
La Defuncion : www.ladefuncion.com
Caustic Records : www.causticrecords.com