The NBT Review


Welcome to the very first NBT Reviews Blog.

Martin Smit who runs the NBT project and hosts the NBT Podcast reviews new releases from Lauren Fincham and The Strange Tones

AndChris Manik Moon the host of the NBT Bullets from the Belfry Podcast reviews the latest creation of South African industrial/electronic band NUL.

 Lauren Fincham :  Perfect Pain (Twelfth House Records)

 With a subtle shrug, the singer kicks of this 6 track EP with a sly soft ‘constant craving’ lullaby for the gentle outsiders, old priests and fallen dancers. You are caught up in an ambiguous take of hope and defeat. You are soothed but entranced by the glowing imagery at the same time.

While there are definite hints of artists like Jane Sibbery and KD Lang in the arrangements and production, what makes Perfect Pain stand out is how she twists the complicated modern ( for example an online relationship) with and into haunting glances at her past.This album is the sound of the artist taking stock of where she stands in her own universe and with fear or tension preparing to move on to brighter, perhaps even, more difficult worlds.To make a collection this dreamlike, Fincham is extremely lucky to have the perfect back up, the musicians are in sync, sympathy, and indeed understanding, of every word and melody she creates.

Tiny moments like the late night trumpet of the title track, the sad slightly dangerous viola on several tracks all contribute to this thing of thoughtful beauty.

 Go to

To listen to and buy this cd.

 The Strange Tones :   We’re On Our Way (Meteor Sonic)

 When Tarantino goes back to making movies about quirky outsiders on the run, The soundtrack to that howling film should consist of tracks from this release.Raw roots rock n roll is the hardest beast to tame. Bands that attempt this often run the risk of being a novelty act or sunk in a pool of nostalgia. The Strange Tones though sidestep these problems with ease.

With  a perfect sense of humour, a healthy dose of self awareness, and the swagger of bands like the Cramps and alt country legends; X, The Strange Tones take music from the past and make it sound like it belongs, right here and now.

 Go here

To listen to and buy this cd.


NUL : Elektro Berzerk


A frantic beat (where’s my bpm monitor?), solid riff, nicely distorted guitar breaking in and the guttural Afrikaans lyrics rasped in repetition puts Nul firmly in place as the Afrikaans version of Rammstein. Though it lacks the bombast of their German counterparts –this, in my mind, is a good thing. The songs sparseness and angularity putting emphasis on the strong songline and lyrical message, a message to the ‘Rampokkers’ to get out, relate and stand vas!

Go to:

 Hear Lauren Fincham and The Strange Tones on the March 5th broadcast of the NBT Podcast

 And you can hear an interview and tracks from NUL on the Bullets from the Belfry podcast right now! 

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