[reviews] afe049cd
gerstein: here comes sickness

funprox []
webzine, the netherlands, january 2004

Gerstein is a name I remember from the past. This Italian project was present on some samplers in the early 90s, like Taste This (Discordia). Gerstein is basically the solo project of Maurizio Pustianaz, though for a while he cooperated with another musician. After various tapes Gerstein released its first album 'Sucker' in 1993, in collaboration with Misty Circles.

About the first half of the tracks on 'Here Comes Sickness' were recorded between 1990-1992, while the second part of the album contains works made between 1999 and 2001. A keyword related to Gerstein is eclectism. He has made piano ballads, energetic postpunk-like tracks, but also more electronic experiments. Most songs are rather dark and melancholic.

Maurizio has a rather peculiar voice, he is not a very 'good' singer, but he manages to convey emotion, sounding quite tragic, at times theatrical. Of the older stuff I quite like the raw batcave piece 'Dust' and the piano ballads 'Warmth' (though only 1 min. long) and 'Frozen', as well as the minimal 'There's Something on My Back'.

Of the more recent material 'Addicted' stands out, with almost danceable electronic beats and distorted vocals. The atmosphere reminds me somewhat of Runes Order. The album also contains some nice slow electronic pieces like 'Go Spread Some' and 'Cosmic Waves'. The last song 'How I Feel' is apparently an indication how Gerstein wants to sound in the future, it's actually quite electronic and poppy.

All in all an interesting compilation of the diverse work of Gerstein. Not all songs are completely succeeded, some sound rather raw and almost unfinished, but there are certainly some worthwhile moments on it.