Genre/Influences: Electro-wave, goth-pop.
Background/Info: ManOK is a Ukrainian duo, which already released a first album in 2012 on Scentair Records.
Content: “Dies Irae” clearly deals with pop influences, which have been joined and accomplished by other genres like electro-wave, EBM and gothic music. I also noticed some folk-, neo-classic- and even cinematographic influences running through a few cuts. The male- and female vocals are all sung in the Russian language.
The last cuts are remixes by Ginger Snap5, Anton Gagarin, Hyperhate and Invisible Devastation.
+ + + : ManOK clearly deals with a pop format you can’t directly link with another formation. The Russian language makes it very specific as well. I prefer the songs moving on the edge of body-pop music although the “Acoustic”-version of “В Эмпиреях”, which is more into soundtrack music, is captivating as well. The Hyperhate remix is a quite noticeable cut.
– – – : I can imagine ManOK is the kind of band that will get more recognition in their homeland and/or Russia instead of the world-wide electro-pop scene. I however think the album is missing some passion and especially highlights.
Conclusion: “Dies Irae” left me rather skeptical about the potential of ManOK although it’s an opportunity for electro-pop fans to discover a band from the Ukrainian scene.
Best songs: “Инкуб”, “В Эмпиреях (Acoustic)”.