They said “Batnip for Goths”, and yes, yes it is. And that may be the best three-word short and sweet tagline that’s cobwebbed my crypt of an inbox. A metronome bass line that pushes, propels. A cavernous drum sound that climbs chamber walls. A washed angst performance from vocals that lurch from a baritone throat, and a chilled sweeping synth that dilates and detunes. If every homage and throwback was this good and faithful, you’d swear this was original sin.
Sisters Of Mercy, The Mission, The Cult, that cross between glam, mane-haired rock and nu-wave is alive and still kicking out thrills. See the lime green light streak through dry-ice filtered rooms, see the chaotic twistings of a leather wrapped limbs as they awkwardly jerk to the music. Eyeliner a must, in thick bands on white faces, hear the creak and the screech of a PVC skin as it creases and squeaks with each twitch.
“Line your eyes and dance / Like the last 30 years never happened at all” pays respect to the distance between then and now. But as subcultures thrive and their legacies last, this is more than pure throwback, it’s love. Love for the mood and the light and the dark. Love for the details that shine through nostalgia. As convincing as any first-wave dance tinged goth, and as pleasing to hear and consume.
It’s a chunk, it’s a stretch of familiar warped sounds. A repetitive measure in kraut-rock length proportions. Electronic rushes rest lazy and easy on that bassline that never stops leching. That troubled low voice talks control and dark souls, there’s“hell to pay” for unfathomable torments. It’s deliciously steeped in despair and yet somehow, who-knows-how, and no-I-dont-care-how, skilfully dodges post-parody schlock.
There’s an album that’s still in the making. I’ll be waiting for more to tune into. There’s a junk post-punk palate of neons and noise and this grinds through with eloquent ease.