I think we can all agree that 2020 was a f**king year in general. But apart from the usual madness in the world plus a pandemic, we have at least some musical highlights in the last year. If you haven't heard one of these albums yet, it's about time you do. The following Synth Pop and genre-related albums are the ones with the best rating results from our reviews.
How does California weather, ice cream, palm trees and Gothic go together? This question was probably also asked by 'Too Dead To Die' and his new album is accordingly called 'Tropical Gothic'. Almost 6 years have passed since 'Murder On The Dance Floor' and to be honest I didn't believe in a release anymore. Without much announcement or promo I was surprised by the unexpected release. In any case I was very happy. Now the new sound of 'Too Dead To Die' blasts around our ears like a tropical storm. Hot beats and a genre mix like a delicious cocktail awaits the listener. We have already listened to it and tell you what the awesome party tracks are and which songs are more likely to cause headaches.
It feels like an eternity. The second album 'Cyberhead' by 'Priest' is finally released. The 2017 debut 'New Flesh' has reached position 2 of our best albums of 2017. But only very close to the big smasher 'Spirit' by 'Depeche Mode'. The guys can be little bit proud about that fact. In general it is said that the second album is always the hardest. Whether this is also true for Priest is questionable, since the band members play in other bands as well. Here one cannot really speak of a second album in principle.
After 'Endure' in 2016, Assemblage 23 rings in the autumn with an exceptional new album. On 'Mourn', Tom Shear virtuously experiments with a variety of synth elements, making every single song an individual piece of finest electronic music.
These playful variations blend in with very intimate lyrics and personal contemplations on feelings like loneliness, anxiety and emptiness, which are, unfortunately, ever so present in the times we live in.
Release Date: April 3rd 2020 Label: Scanner / Dark Dimensions Label Group Discogs:Absurd Minds – Sapta Partially sounds like:Project Pitchfork, De/Vision, Sisters Of Mercy, Depeche Mode
“‘Sapta’ (Sanskrit) – stands for seven in Old Indian. And while this number is mentally charged with all kinds of attributions and various concepts, it was the inspiration for the naming of the latest strike of the electro formation ‘Absurd Minds‘ and identifies itself as their seventh fulltime album.”, says the official introduction to the press release. In front of us is the successor of ‘Tempus Fugit‘, which sounded like a grenade. So the expectations for the seventh album are high.
‘Hotspot’ was mainly written and recorded in Berlin and Los Angeles. It contains ten brand new Tennant & Lowe tracks, including the previously released single ‘Dreamland’ with Years & Years and the track ‘Burning The Heather’ with Bernard Butler on guitar. The album was produced and mixed by Stuart Price and it is the third part of the trilogy produced by Price, which started in 2013 with ‘Electric‘ and the second part ‘Super‘ was released in 2016.
4 years after the self-release Moments Of Truth, Beyond Obsession are back with their new album 'Revolution From Below'. The white boots appearing on the album cover seem to remind us that Beyond Obsession are still the same and yet different: On nine tracks, the three guys from Germany surprise us with a wide variation of experimental synthpop and classic 80’s elements, making every single song an intriguing piece of work. The lead singer’s voice seems to know no boundaries in heights and puts you into a beautiful melancholic mood.
With their EP 'Rotationsausfall in der Eisfabrik', released in November 2019, Eisfabrik already gave us a sneak peek of what fans had to expect. Now, Dr. Schnee, Der Frost and Celsius let us in on their latest cryothermic experiment and ring in the year 2020 with their new album 'Kryothermalmusik in der Eisfabrik'.
After 'Null Kelvin', this new release clearly shows that Eisfabrik have evolved over the last few years. The 12 songs on this new record offer a well-balanced diversity of slower and up-tempo EBM, future and synth pop tracks with a few interesting twists and turns. Still, you immediately recognize the typical and singular Eisfabrik style with the unique voice of Dr. Schnee.
With 'Gods Verging On Sanity', Black Nail Cabaret has taken themselves to a whole new level in terms of quality, creativity and variety. I know, I already said that on the last album 'Pseudopop', which was released 2 years ago. However, the continuous development and sonically improvement cannot be denied.
The new album includes only 9 new songs, but each song contains almost all the criteria for a single release. After the first listen through I had my mouth open and thought only: "Wow, what a fabulous performance! If 'Black Nail Cabaret' continues like this, they have a high chance to be elected for the album of the year".
Release Date: Augusr 21st, 2020 Label: Mute Records Discogs:Erasure – The Neon Partially sounds like: Pet Shop Boys
After the extremely melancholic album 'World Be Gone' from 2017, the tracks of the latest work 'The Neon' by 'Erasure' are now in the starting blocks. The time we live in hasn't gotten much better apart from the big Covid-19 pandemic and the almost worldwide political narrow-mindedness. But Andy Bell and Vince Clark have focused on the more positive sides of life and you can hear and feel that on 'The Neon'.
While the best album in 2019 was still an album to celebrate and have fun with, in 2020 it is rather a very very gloomy record. Jan Weisbrot aka 'Age Zero' has once again captivated me with his album 'Age Zero III' and put me in a thoughtful, melancholic mood. I'm sure that many people can't understand this high rating, because it really takes a lot of effort to listen to this album. Right away you won't find a hit for the radio or an earworm with a catchy melody. No, the album is bulky and demanding, but when you get into it, it is all the more beautiful.
The extremely honest, open interview with Age Zero is also one of my highlights of 2020 on Electrozombies. In our society, revealing your heart makes you vulnerable, but I see that as a strength and makes Jan all the more sympathetic. Even though it is hinted at in the interview, I hope that this is not the last album by Age Zero, or rather Jan Weisbrot. Thank you Jan for this wonderful album.