CLEANING WOMEN - Aelita ~ The Queen Of Mars

Cleaning Women - Aelita ~ The Queen Of Mars

11 songs
42:04 minutes
***** ***


It doesn't need to be repeated that people from Finland are crazier than your average person in Europe, but when three men call themselves Cleaning Women and start to dress as women to preach about hygiene while playing on their self-built instruments made from drying racks, pickle jars and washing machines, we know that we are into something truly crazy.

Aelita The Queen Of Mars is already the second album by this powder trio, and this time they have been inspired by the Russian mute science fiction movie from the year 1924, which again was an adaptation of a Soviet propagandist Alexander Tolstoy (one of Leo's distant relatives) novel. When Communism and cleanliness go hand in hand, not much can go wrong anymore. The album starts with Aelita, which is also featured as a video clip with cuts from the original movie. This is the longest and darkest track on the album, with a heavy soundtrack atmosphere. From there on, the remaining ten songs explore the sonic possibilities that their strange repertoire of instruments allows. With a sure hand for catchy melodies, Cleaning Women create an original sound somewhere between punk, rock, techno, industrial, world music and avant-garde, always remaining on the safe side of music and thus never becoming overly arty or pretentious. At times they sound like a more percussive Primus. Another hit single is Hotel Jungle Fever, a more danceable tune that is also featured with a video clip on the CD.

Aelita The Queen Of Mars is not an easy album to get into, because the sonic strangeness always gives you something different from what you expect from a regular rock album. But that's also where its quaint charm is lying. The songwriting is good and mostly straightforward, with short moments of more experimental exploration, but in the end you are rewarded with one of the few original bands that can play music not only for elites. Now I would really love to see one of their wacky live shows.

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