“High Tide” album review by Ivan Bullock of Dawn Industry

Thank you Ivan for your kind words!  :-p

(review by Ivan Bullock of Dawn Industry, ripped from

For many years Cassandra’s Myth has been one of Melbournes most secretive hidden musical gems… a project overflowing with talent, originality and an incredible ability to stun listeners every year with a new release of impeccable quality.

High Tide is in stark contrast to previous works of industrial pop oriented electronica, and comes from left field with beautiful acoustic pieces, laid back electronics and a massive spectrum of diversity. Blinding light and uplifting melody, ultra violet chiller electronics, all the way through to a darkness which is not in your face… but lurking, and only exposing itself one small area at a time. There is a lot that we could say about this incredible album… and our good friend reviewer Sean of Alternate Parallel Reality (and his online radio show) has written a review well worth a good few readings.

The album is a free download from the Cassandra’s Myth website… not many things of value are free in this world… and there is far greater value in the art within this album than any release we could imagine you would pay for. Download it, enjoy it, and let Ben know what you thought!!! We think he would very deeply appreciate your feedback and support. All hail Cassandra’s Myth!!! and thank you for your friendship…


“High Tide” album review by Sean Cooper of Alternate Parallel Reality

Delighted that Mr Cooper has taken the time to review HIGH TIDE 🙂

(review by Sean Cooper of Alternate Parallel Reality, ripped from

“High Tide” by Cassandra’s Myth

Plot spoiler… this is a great release!

Some years ago I ran a little music label and the experience was both rewarding and challenging. One of the challenges was discovering (the hard way) that there are often very legitimate and viable reasons for the loathesome behaviour of major labels. One of the rewards was discovering talented and likeable artists with massive potential. Both the challenges and rewards collided when I received a very impressive demo (which I still treasure) by an act called Cassandra’s Myth.

I liked Ben and his music straight away.. I could tell that there is immense talent and maturity there, and knew I’d be a fan for life. But my label was struggling – it wouldn’t survive long enough to publish the first Cassandra’s Myth album – and I was forcing myself to think like one of those awful A&R people who need to pigeonhole artists.

Cassandra’s Myth was stunningly eclectic, effortlessly spanning genres and styles. I couldn’t describe this artist in a sound bite. My own musical creations are characterised by genre-hopping so I knew what a curse it could be in terms of marketing. One one hand, we want all the songs to sound distinct and to know that the artist has range and scope… but we also want an essential “them-ness” that unifies it all. We’re playing a risky game of lucky dip every time we purchase from a musical chameleon – we have a feeling we could do as well taking a random sampling from any unthemed compilation.

Thus, I was tempted to steer Cassandra’s Myth towards aspects of their sound that might be easier to sell by description than winning hearts one at a time by getting people to hear for themselves. I wish I hadn’t articulated this concern at the time; I risked alienating a friend and constricting one of the most talented independent musical artists in this country. That’s a big regret, but I was hemorrhaging funds and wanted as many people to hear this guy as I could.

Fast-forward nearly a decade to now, and I’m pleased to say that not only is Cassandra’s Myth still making music, but that it’s as effortlessly eclectic as it ever was… and it’s sounding better, more beautiful, sophisticated and interesting than ever. Which brings us to High Tide, the latest album. Of his rare releases, I’ve already listened to this one more frequently than the others.

This is a more reflective piece than the others… the last release, “Maintenance” started with energy and edginess, and revealed a more introspective side for the people still listening to the second half of the album. The new offering, “High Tide,” begins with a softer piece called “Devotional” that is a beautiful entrée, letting us know that we have a special and intimate experience ahead.

There are still, however, surprises. The autotuned vocals in the album’s eponymous track caught me off-guard. Once I got over the initial shock, though, I enjoyed how well it worked in the song. It could be something of an affront to the darker or more industrially-based listeners, but Ben has a way of keeping your faith by weaving together unlikely sonic elements and making them work.

The production values here are immaculate too, and the best exemplar is “Xoff” with it’s perfectly captured acoustic guitar riff, textured pads and layered vocals. Ben’s become quite the audio engineer and the whole album’s sound has the champagne sparkle of well-executed production techniques.

“Wings” was the first song I heard, in demo form, from this album and I fell in love with it straight away. It’s a lovely tune, filled with mellow and wistful ambience. It would sit nicely alongside a lot of the tracks by The Church in their Remote Luxury era. “Wings” is a perfect chillout song and, to me, is the heart of the “High Tide” album.

This album has it’s darker side, from the sinister soaring synths of “Neutable” to the dark electronics of “Womb Nest”… and it all belongs in a complex and beautiful tapestry that is the “High Tide” listening experience. Earlier releases might be characterised by more of the kinds of songs that more readily stand out as ‘singles’, but I’m confident that history will vindicate High Tide as the most rewarding and endearing album yet. It signifies a lot of musical talent and maturity and makes me very proud to be acquainted with it’s creator.

The music industry is a frustrating and contradictory beast and notions of fairness simply have no place. Acts like Ke$ha will be installing diamond-encrusted X-boxes in their personal jets, while unsigned independent artists find it hard to even give their music away. We probably can’t do much about the first half of that sentence, but we can fix the second bit – “High Tide” by Cassandra’s Myth is offered as a completely free download at his website,

That’s right, Ben’s giving this away. You can totally take it and listen to your heart’s content. Check out a stunning offering from one of Australia’s great unsigned underground indie artists and you won’t have to take my word for how damn good it is.

Get your free copy of “High Tide” by Cassandra’s Myth HERE 


minorarc album review


MinorArc album artwork

The debut MinorArc album is available now.

Check out Sean of APR‘s review here.

…or hear for yourself and stream it for free from here.

Minorarc: Review by Sean Cooper (Alternate Parallel Reality)


Sean Cooper has a very diverse musical background and has spent many years producing, supporting, reviewing and releasing music. From the long-ago days of major Australian band Tainted Violets, through to operating the independent label Zeitgeist Records, and his current project Alternate Parallel Reality, he is well known amongst the underground music community for his honesty, analysis and ability to write… long, in-depth and powerful rants about music, the industry, and above all his love of the sonic artform. We thank Sean deeply for taking the time to review the first Minorarc album, and thank him for his eternal support of so many musicians choosing to self-release over the years.


Sometimes an artist just has to look at their body of work and ask themselves if they’re using the best tools for the job, in terms of expressing their message. Sometimes that means a radical and extreme reinvention. Like Rimbaud, who left behind a prestigious and respected career as the most talented and promising poet of his day to become a pirate and gun runner (“this is my poetry now!”), Ivan Bullock has shed his skin and assumed an extreme new form. He decided he’d taken his former project Mystral Tide, known for it’s lush grandiose Gothic introspection, and assumed the identity of Minorarc… which is darker and considerably more menacing. The beauty has become the beast.

That’s not to say that Ivan’s turned his back on what he does best. You’ll still hear the expansive piano, the ethereal pads, syncopated percussion and elegant use of fade-in and fade-out. Tracks are still gothic in tone, operatic in structure and monumental in scope.

It’s mostly the attitude that’s changed. Where Mystral Tide lamented the human condition, Minorarc willingly embraces it. Where Mystral Tide was an archeological project, looking back and deeper for meaning, Minorarc braces itself and casts it’s hungry gaze to the future. Where Mystral Tide stared into the abyss, Minorarc jumps right in…

And what we end up with is an ambitious and impressive debut album that’s one of the deepest and most interesting I’ve heard all year. Featuring by Ben from Cassandra’s Myth and Brett from Sarcophony, we have a long-player that ranges from the classically ambient to the menacingly metallic – with touches of futuristic electronica and even the occasional hint of rap – though we’re not talking about anything gangsta…. recall the kind of vocals Love And Rockets employed on ”**** (Jungle Law)” or the vocal styles of some early Sister Machine gun tracks, and you’ll get the picture. Trust me, it fits perfectly.

To this Mystral Tide fan, it feels more like a natural progression than a complete makeover. When I first heard preview snippets of the new material, I thought about the difference between Carl Mcoy’s Fields Of The Nephilim and his much-harder Nefilim line-up. In fact, I thought a lot of the guitars, bass and vocals recalled and reflected this sound (though Mystral/Minorarc has a very different aesthetic, philosophy and dimensions given by pianos and classical influences that mark out Ivan’s work as unique). I know the last few discs have been mostly ambient, but if you’ve seen Ivan crank up the amplifier and jam along to Strapping Young Lad, you’ll know that the gothic ambience and atmospheres conceal a heart of metal.

Truthfully, and Ivan might not like me for saying this, I feel that the Minorarc album is everything I wanted the last two MT albums to be, and more. Mystral Tide releases are consistently good and I would recommend anyone with good taste in music to get themselves at least one or two in their CD collection… but while I feel that each release was improving, they weren’t evolving like I wanted them to. I yearned for the daring next step, the next chapter, the new insights and newer techniques. I didn’t want MT doing the same thing only better – I wanted signifiers of growth. I wanted a brave new vision. With Minorarc, I got my wish, with interest.

I won’t do a track-by-track review, because I loathe that reviewing style (which never fails to ruin the album for me, and reminds of people who evaluate a movie for you by telling you everything that happens in it. Not only do you get their second-hand surface-level insight, but they’ve also managed to rob you of the discovery and the secrets). What I’ll tell you is that we have an extremely ambitious and daring debut album that stands alone stylistically with all the gothic grandiosity you’ve loved before, but effortlessly fuses a harder edge (both attitudinally and sonically) and futuristic electronics to come up with a listening experience that you’d expect from darkwave legends at the peaks of their careers.

It’s sounds great too. It’s polished, with all the production skills Ivan’s refined over the years. It’s quite an accomplishment to make a new musical identity and give it both cred and a unique voice while still making it sound like an experienced established act that’s well and truly found it’s voice and mastered it’s craft. Minorarc is an embodiment of this principle, though.

Even though I’m reminded of classic recordings by Nefilim, Sex Gang Children, Velvet Acid Christ, nobody sounds quite like Minorarc. Nobody’s doing what Ivan and his cohorts are doing here. And somehow this brave new voice has produced a debut album that sounds like the peak of a career. I don’t think I’m being hyperbolic in the least when I say that the Minorarc album is a future classic that all goth, darkwave and industrial fans will want to have in their CD collections.

Did I mention that it comes with remixes that rock? I’m not just saying that because my own remix of In Prime is on there (and, IMHO, the best remix work I’ve ever done), but extremely good mixes from Milkrun and Nigel Moore appear to make this a very worthy release indeed.

If I sound like I’m excited by this album, you’d be very right. One of my favourite artists (and good friend) has made something that’s impressed the hell out of me. And considering the high expectations I’ve learned to have for his work, that’s quite something. I’m spending a lot of time listening to the Minorarc album, and I think you should too.

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