SoundCloud Music Reviews, Uncategorized

Ornamenti d’Oro Dark Wave Artist (Madrid, Spain)


Meet Ornamenti d’Oro aka Gustavo A. Roselinsky, a dark wave artist originally from Cordoba, Argentina and now residing in Madrid, Spain.  A short time ago, Roselinsky contacted me after the completion of my ‘Humanfobia‘ review.  Of course, I first checked out his music to see if I liked what I heard, and it just so happens that I did.  Roselinsky’s music is the fusing of various gothic genres (including dark wave, electronica dance pop and industrial mixed with certain classical music traits.) The sound felt authentically old school, and perhaps this is because one learns from and is typically influenced by the best (in this case, 80s wave.) 

With these elements mixing in dark harmony, they came complete with a set of operatic or choir-like vocals that swam through the sounds and belted out images of dimly lit candelabras in a stained glass church, with religious figures from the dark ages solemnly praying to their god as their enemies reside in a torture chamber beneath them. Being that Ornamenti d’Oro has a higher pitched vocal range, I can best compare his voice to that of an opera or choir vocalist that had suddenly died, but whose specter (who doesn’t know they’re dead) echoes with song. Thus, his music suits my tastes and his vocals blend very smoothly within the booming sound of the drums. However, as always I do have my very super specific favorites, which include the song “Una Advertencia A Los Curiosos” and Ornamenti d’Oro’s current hit single “Great God,” (which we will discuss in greater detail momentarily.) 

I recommend both tracks when listening to Roselinsky’s music and I hold these songs in very high esteem. Both tracks are from Ornamenti d’Oro’s new album release Mater Tenebrarum. To feel the full effect of Great God, one must go no further than to watch the music video (as shown below.) I promise, upon first watch, you will immediately be in the mood to dance. His songs are without question, goth club approved. 

If you’ve already taken a break from this article to watch this video, then why not look at Great God’s lyrics as well?
                                          “Great God”
“He sleeps under your bed, and tampers with your stuff
they call him The Great God Gland
he slips into your room and plays with all your toys
he hides away your things, he’ll mess with your head
You try to go for a walk, but you’re not safe out there
the streets belong to him, the trees they are his friends
you try to walk away but there’s no place to go
he’ll find you anywhere, he wants to be your friend
Sleeping under your bed, and tampering with your stuff
his name is The Great God Gland
don’t try to walk away, there is no place to hide
he lives inside your skull, he wants to be your friend”
It’s an amusing past time of mine to read and analyze lyrics, but songs are always just a moment, a mind, an emotion and a glimpse of the imagination. You can’t really hold onto the moment forever, even if you so badly want to. Roselinsky’s eyes pierce through his own image, as if some powerful spell is placed upon him. He looks into a mirror reciting and scrying his incantations, with either fear or amazement or both. His pupils grow larger and he stares into himself and then the camera, all the while, dancing with the darkness and sinking into the ever changing colors surrounding him.
We can’t tell if insanity or unseen forces have taken over him, but the feeling from this video seems strikingly reminiscent of the rave scene. I get the feeling that he’s seen the best of it, but the underground is underground for a reason and so it’s all just speculation from where I stand. Just the same I enjoyed the pleasant simplicity of this piece, fitted best with a minimalist video. (Sometimes less is indeed more and it shows through in Ornamenti d’Oro’s performance.) Roselinsky, during his interview, naturally revealed all the more about himself and his art. With eagerness, I anxiously received the details to all of my questions concerning his work. Without further adieu let’s get to the interview, shall we?

                                                  INTERVIEW WITH ORNAMENTI D’ORO                                      


“Tell me all about the track ‘Great God.’What inspired this song and what do the lyrics say?”

Roselinsky: “Great God’ (originally called “The Great God Gland”) was the first song I recorded when I started this project back in 2013. However, it was first created in 2006, when I recorded four demos for the short film soundtrack that never got made (as far as I know). The demos were all built around the same sample. This was one of them…”

“…Fast forward to 2013, I wanted to start a new solo project combining disco-inspired beats with 90s Dark wave, so I dug up those old demos and transformed that one sample into a song. The original lyrics are loosely inspired by “The Great God Pan” by Arthur Machen, but they have changed a lot since first written. I wouldn’t say I pay too much mind to writing lyrics mainly because I think I’m terrible at it (even though I read a lot, especially horror fiction.) The idea behind the lyrics of “Great God” are that glands control our lives whether we know it or not, although you should maybe go ask a doctor to confirm that notion! lol”

“How did you create the music video, and its concept and set up?”

Roselinsky: “The video was made by Jamie, one of the people who run Tensión Ritual, (the label that released the tape.) We shot a whole bunch of scenes of me lip-synching at this basement with some fake audience dancing in the background. Some time later we shot scenes with me walking around the old part of Madrid in winter, looking very frightened. Eventually most of the shots with the audience got cut out, so it’s basically my face for most of the time on camera. I think it suits the music very well, although I’d love to do something completely different visually, next time.”

“Tell me about some of your recommended tracks, albums and EPs. What makes these favorites particularly special, among your many musical works?”

Roselinsky: “Well, I guess I’d recommend the album “Mater Tenebrarum,” which contains only the tracks that survived the long process of selection and the disposal of all the material I wrote over the last five years. Some of the songs changed a lot. Others are almost exactly as I recorded them the first time, but they all reflect what this project was meant to be about and what it has turned into over the course of time. I think my favorite tracks from the album are “Una Advertencia A Los Curiosos” and “Prima Guerra Mondiale,” mostly because they point to the direction I want to follow with the new material I’ve been working on. I also recommend the first two EPs I released, not because of the original versions of the songs (the ones in the album are much better I think,) but because each EP comes with several remixes of the same track made by very different and admired artists (some of which I hope to work with again in the future.) 

“Tell me about when you first gained an interest in making music.”

Roselinsky: “I grew up in a very musical environment thankfully. Both my parents and my two sisters were and still are really into music in general. My parents in particular are both amateur musicians, so making music was a very natural thing for me. I started at 15 (in the mid 90s) singing in a Hardcore/Metal band and soon I had my own Goth-oriented project. I haven’t really stopped making music since then. I think at this point it isn’t really a choice. I wouldn’t really know how to function otherwise.”

“Tell me about when you first became heavily involved in the music scene.”

Roselinsky: “I entered the scene through Punk/Hardcore/Alternative/Metal culture in the mid 90s. Back in Córdoba, Argentina, the underground Goth scene was pretty small, so we all knew each other and played together, but there wasn’t a lot of room for being picky about this or that genre. I became interested in Goth very early on, around 1996, but I didn’t have many friends who shared my exact (very esoteric) musical tastes, so my first band where I really did my thing had to be varied stylistically. I hated that fact at the time, but now looking back I think it was great. By the late 90s, I started to be interested in Noise, and eventually Electronica. Also I had no bands anymore, so by 2001 when I had the chance to start making music again with my first solo project Ponstil, I did it using a computer. Since then, I never stopped making electronic music. To me it was the logical evolution of the Punk DIY ethos, especially considering that I had no money. A cheap computer with illegal software was the new 4-track home studio.”


What is the underground music scene like where you are from? How involved are you with this scene currently and what are some notable experiences you’ve had?

Roselinsky:I don’t really know anymore, to be honest. I left my home town Córdoba in 2010, first to move to the countryside, then to Buenos Aires and eventually to Europe. As far as I know underground music is still heavily connected to rock music there, which was one of the things that drew me away from it in the first place. Even though Córdoba is the second largest city in Argentina, the scene is very small relative to its size, and the general lack of resources and the endless cycle of economic crises that are inherent to the Third World don’t help. Right now there are two labels from Córdoba that I’d recommend: Amigosdelalima and  Sonido Atmosférico. In Buenos Aires, where I lived for a couple of years, things are very different. Yes, it’s a pretty difficult place and very precarious as well, but underground and experimental music are amazing over there. There are parties, labels, and producers, many of them making some of the most interesting music in the world. My favorite is the label & art collective TRRUENO, which I was a part of until about a year ago. There’s also Mun Discos, the label I run with my dear friend Manuel from the studio & synth workshop Tercer Brazo Estudio. Most of our experiences in Argentina as producers of weird music involved working very hard in environments that range from indifferent to hostile, while expecting absolutely no money or feedback in return. Yet people still do it and we loved music that much that we did it as well.”


“Tell me about more Tensión Ritual.”

Roselinsky: “Tensión Ritual is the name of two promoters in Madrid (Greta and Jamie,) who helped me with the first gig I played when I came to Madrid. They were interested in starting a tape label so they invited me to be the first release. They haven’t put out any other material yet, but I think they’re currently working on their own project, a Goth/Synth duo called “La Mano.” Jamie also has a solo project called Strucktura.”

“Is there more than one label that you are involved with?”

Roselinsky: “The 2002 Córdoba label Mun Discos helped to release my own material in CDR. To me it felt like the natural evolution of the old Punk/Hardcore DIY cassette labels. I started to collaborate with my friend Manuel in 2003 and eventually the label moved to Buenos Aires around the mid-to-late 2000s. We never stopped releasing stuff, eventually dropping the CDRs for full-on digital releases, especially when Bandcamp arrived. Although we’ve had many ups and downs, we’ve managed to keep the project afloat for almost 17 years now. You can have an idea of what music we release from this 15 year anniversary compilation, since most of our early releases are not available anywhere on the internet.”

How many projects are you involved in and who have you collaborated with thus far?

Roselinsky: “I’ve had tons of projects over the years. Ponstil, I was involved for most of the last decade. My main band called Kiev with Valentín Basel, was another one from the Mun Discos project. We played from 2003-2013, when I started Ornamenti d’Oro. I also played guitar in a Goth band called Autómata from 2004-2005. The keyboard player now makes music as Ditta Perdita. I also have an ongoing collaboration with Manuel, aka Epiref. We first did a gig in 2006 for a series of concerts organized by the Goethe Institut Córdoba as a tribute to old German electronic music. We did mostly covers from Neue Deutche Welle and early German post-punk, from Malaria to Palais Schaumburg. Eventually we started writing our own stuff, but mostly as a live project. We released our only EP in 2016 and I also collaborated with the Swedish choreographer/performance artist Ofelia Jarl Ortega from the project Valquiria. We performed twice, first in Buenos Aires and then in Ljubljana. I also recorded this weird little thingy with Russian/Argentinian producer Astrosuka, who also mixed my album.”

Ornamenti d’Oro’s Collaborative Performance with Valquiria shown (below)

“What are some of your musical influences?”

Roselinsky: “I grew up listening to tons of different music from Medieval and Classical music, to Brazilian and general Latin American protest songs, to 60s, 70s and 80s rock and pop music. Eventually I found Punk and Hip-hop in the mid 90s and then Goth/Dark wave around the same time, which was the first time I felt I had finally found my own thing. Specifically for the project Ornamenti d’Oro my main influences are 90s Dark Wave (especially European bands like Ataraxia, The Breath of Life or Love is Colder than Death) and some electronic music from when I started the project. This includes new Goth bands like Bestial Mouths and Nightmare Fortress and also dark Hip-hop and just plain weird electronic stuff, some of it from the post-Witch House scene. Oh, and Disco, always Disco.”

“Is there anything else you’d like to add before we end?”

Roselinsky: “Absolutely! I adore and worship the entire Goth/Dark Wave tradition, from the early 80s stuff all the way to the 90s and the continuing micro scenes we’ve had since then. I’m not very happy with our current fixation with revivalism. Even if I love the old music, I don’t want to keep on repeating the same old formulas. I think Goth is better than that. It was always a weird scene, really open to new ideas, and the fact that it was always ignored by the ‘serious’ press is a good thing in my opinion. It gave us freedom from trends and shit like that. I think we can be weird and innovative without losing our identity. At least that’s what I’m trying to do for myself and for the movement.”

                                                    FINAL THOUGHTS FOR THE HOUR                                          

Oh the dead! Oh the music of the dead! Oh the tormented! Cemeteries and mausoleums galore. It doesn’t seem like Ornamenti d’Oro is going to be leaving the dark wave scene any time soon and we can only expect more and far greater things to come from this project. Kudos to great start Roselinsky and I hope you go far. 

If you liked this article please like and subscribe to Waking Dream’s WordPress, SoundCloud and YouTube. Also, if you’re interested in checking more of Ornamenti d’Oro and following this artist on their various plages, you can click his links for (FB, SoundCloud, and BandCamp.) Take care and have a pleasant day. 

-Liz Lund of Waking Dream


Ornamenti D’Oro Links:

Bandcamp Link

Ornamenti d’Oro’s FB Link

Waking Dream Links:

Waking Dream’s FB

Waking Dream’s YouTube Link

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