Unwoman | Knowledge Scars

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United States - California - SF

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Pop: Dark Wave Avant Garde: Electronic Avant-Garde Moods: Solo Female Artist
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Knowledge Scars

by Unwoman

Dark electronic with unique vocals and cello. This album presents Unwoman's more experimental early work while establishing her as a potent songwriter.
Genre: Pop: Dark Wave
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. In Gilead
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4:35 $0.89
2. The Futurist's Nightmare
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3:31 $0.89
3. Deeper Understanding
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3:27 album only
4. Who Programmed my Desire?
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4:09 $0.89
5. Knowledge Scars
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4:13 $0.89
6. Freedom From Religion!
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4:50 $0.89
7. Sentiment
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3:54 album only
8. Dispossessed
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4:47 $0.89
9. Lament for Peter Pan
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7:11 $0.89
10. Subsistence
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4:45 $0.89
11. You
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6:33 $0.89
12. When I Touch Myself
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4:33 $0.89
13. The Drowning Man
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6:53 album only
14. Vacant Skies Revisited
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2:41 $0.89
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
Knowledge Scars, Unwoman's debut album, crosses many genre lines but presents a unified dark electronic collection. Self-produced and self-engineered, the album is a tribute to her diverse influences and DIY philosophy. Ranging from cello-laced synth-pop and trip-hop, to experimental industrial, to ethereal ambient vocal-piano excursions, describing Unwoman's music necessitates many hyphens.

www.starvox.net, Matthew Heilman:
Knowledge Scars is an impressive debut release from Erica Mulkey, an independent solo artist from California that under the appellation Unwoman has released a darkly erotic and thought-provoking collection of songs. Erica expresses her instrumental prowess as an accomplished vocalist, cellist, and keyboardist. Her style ranges from a kind of experimental trip hop to swirling darkwave atmosphere with just enough static and noise to give it that extra technical punch. [...]

Outburn Magazine (Issue 18), Octavia:
[...]Knowledge Scars is an unpredictable and surprisingly likeable debut.

Rik MacLean, in The Violet Collection:
"Knowledge Scars is a remarkable work, showing a confidence and surety in all aspects of songwriting and performance, as well as showing a skill and a finesse that would leave most other artists in the dust. [...] The songs collected here are a fantastic testimony to the beauty of synthesis, featuring Erica's beautiful vocals firmly entrenched in a constantly shifting array of sound and noise. [...] Her work follows a very angular, razor sharp form that emphasizes the strength of her lyrical skills. [...] Erica's skills are equally apparent in her cover versions, particularly her take on "The Drowning Man" by The Cure. Bare and minimal, this is one of the best interpretations of a song I've heard in ages, truly capturing the spirit of the piece and the desperation therein in a nightmare soundscape of desolation and torment that adds to the original. [...] Erica Mulkey is brilliant."

Unwoman's music is exceptionally hard to define or categorize. Her musical and literary influences include such diverse artists as Joan Baez, Joy Division, Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Crass, Anais Nin, Margaret Atwood, Anne Sexton, Tori Amos, Arnold Schoenberg, Skinny Puppy, Coil, and the Swans, to name a few. Her music has been compared to Diamanda Galas, Battery, Death In June, Meredith Monk, Download, Arvo Paert, Kate Bush, and others. She likes to describe herself as some combination of electro, noise, abstract art music, and pure girly music. You can read more about her at http://www.unmediated.net/un-bio.html and download songs at http://www.mp3.com/ericamulkey .

About Knowledge Scars:
Many of these are remixes or reworkings of songs previously recorded acoustically. All of the songs on this album are electronic or manipulated electronically. All are written by Unwoman except as noted, and performed by Unwoman, with d.compose (Bret Truchan, or the artist fromerly known as clone45a-6) on "Freedom From Religion," "In Gilead," and "Sentiment."

Album Credits: Produced and engineered by Erica Mulkey. Digitally mastered by Da5id Din at Corrosive Audio. Artwork/photos/manipulation by Kat Mulkey, Simon Sutherland, Emma Simcock, and Erica Mulkey. Layout by Erica Mulkey.


to write a review

Steven Allen

Dark and scary industrio-pop electronica.
A well written, well recorded intense CD...very musical, dark and scary. She has a beautiful voice, and surrounds the vocals with a wide assortment of electronic sounds, noises, and cello. Lyrically takes modern organized religion to task regarding the role of women in society. Some very edgy and compelling stuff. A must listen!


Best music I have heard since 1985
This CD was amazing, the craftsmanship, the way the jewel case just opened and closed so smoothly etc. And the music was like candy to my ears, Chocolate Cello with an array of intense electronic beats, superb vocals which sat in the mix roughly but lovely - Fabulous. Will definitely refer more!

thom gabaldon

very interesting to say the least...i liked this...imagine if kate bush had turned her classic sense to electronics with robert smith's musings, then you have unwoman...she is all woman though with lilt and fury in the right places...and great lyrics to boot...what you're still reading this?...what's wrong with you?...get it now

Bloodlossgirl, gothling.com

Woman to UnWoman
This is a hyper-revved instrumental delight! Cello, lilting vocals, industrial electronics and beats make Unwoman a woman to watch. I'm particularly fond of the cover of Kate Bush's "Deeper Understanding" and Unwoman's spare treatment of the Cure's "Drowning Man". This album is unique and enjoyable from beginning to end. Other notable tracks include the creepy "The Futurist's Nightmare", "Knowledge Scars" and "Dispossessed". The full effect is a bizarre cyperpunk mock-Victorian treat with some oomph! Unwoman is full of surprises, and any fan of Rasputina should not hesitate to check out this marvellous addition to the spooky genre.

a listener

signs of superior intelligence
edgy electronica and meloclassical cello playing and vocals -this is something that only a TRUE artist could think of, not only that the music is superb but Unwoman's songs also makes a statement- not conforming to some mainstream pop junkie. if you don't get this album you'll miss half of your life!

Katherine D

dark, melodic, and biting
Having just finished "The Handmaid's Tale", the name "Unwoman" caught my eye. All the allusions back to that book fascinated me, so hey, why not, I bought the album. I'm not usually a fan of electronica, but Unwoman continues to hold my interest. These songs are a beautifully dark mix of melody, voice, and electronic noises. I've never heard anything like it--the cello makes it particularly unique, and her voice is just right: melodic, but wavering and angry. There are a few spots where she steps a little out of her range and her voice breaks, but I look forward to hearing that improve in her next album!


A CD that was yet to leave my player. I stumbled across this page and saw she had her first CD out so i had to, not only hear it, but buy it for myself! Very entrancing, beautiful music i can listen to all day. I love the way she puts her sounds together so they all flow. Will keep an eye out for, hopefully her next project :o)


Still fabuolous year after its' debut
I pulled this CD out the other day and must say that it is still amazing 7 years after the release! Amazing to the point that I HAD to come here and write a review. The Unwoman project mixes traditional styling of the cello, with experimental electronica, embraces it with clean female vocals, emotive dynamics, and very interesting and enriching lyrics. If you haven't bought it already, what are you waiting on?

peter raven

Can we say "genius", girls and boys?!
Of the three CDs I just ordered from CD Baby (Cat Martino "Dance", Artemis "Undone"), Erica's is the most complex and unusual, the least likely to wear thin after repeated listenings--and certainly the least like mainstream anything. This is synthetic music of a very high order, recommended for adventurous listeners who are tired of the commercial junk at the chain muzak outlets. Give your money to a real artist, instead of flushing it down the corporate toilet, and order this CD at once. Better still, order three and give two to your most treasured friends.


Interesting stuff
Interesting stuff...interesting vocals. It's a little too much of the same. That being said, I do like the way this recording has been approached. It is edgy, gritty and sometimes unsettling.