So this last two weeks has been hard. I’ve had some personal tragedy that has made it hard to write. The work we do is important, and great music is being made. So I will try to fight through that and give some impressions of what i am currently listening to.
Night Nail – (FTL) – American transplants in Germany Night Nail have released another shadowsynth single. This time, their first foray with Cold Transmission and producer Pete Burn (Kill Shelter). It’s delicate, dark, and Brandon’s yearning vocals add depth and emotion. The video features Justin in more saxophone in darkwave music. I want all of this I can take. I feel this spells big things to come with their creative freedom on Cold Transmission.
My Velvet Cage (A tribute to Venus in Furs) – I often expound the idea that being focused on the past doesn’t help our way forward in this scene. However paying homage to the past is important. In this case a band of the past Venus in Furs who paid homage to The Velvet Underground now having homage paid to them in this tribute is a beautiful thing. This release off Wave Noir is a spellbinding bent knee compilation of talent showing love to a band important in this scene. It includes frequent friends of the page: Paris Alexander and Erine, The Stave Church, Human, Pilgrims of Yearning, Shad Shadows, UIU, and Ash Code, offering gorgeous renditions of these post punk classics. A must have for fans of old school post Punk.
The Cult Sounds: – What Gets Done At Night – New single from Saint Louis traditional goth rockers The Cult Sounds. I love the bracing chopping finger pressing guitar. “The Devil he knows what gets done in the night”. Forcefully delivered lyrics with a midwest post punk seasoning. Bennett Huntley has a clear and ringing vocal style that pulls you in the laser beam. Everything I hear from this band makes me more excited.
Crying Vessel – Pleasures For the Wicked – The newest release from darkwave masters Crying Vessel. Newly signed to Cleopatra Records. They have a deep horror movie creeping terror style. With dark pop sensibility and an emotionally narrative journey. Slade has one of those voices that adds pizzaz and theatrics in vocal inflection that keep you engaged and comfortable to let down the defenses and follow this emotional rollercoaster where it takes you. I feel so many retro Stranger Things feels with this record.
Stoneburner – Soundsystem – Another new Steven Archer release, another completely new direction. Yes here you get the percussion body quivers I have come to associate with Stoneburner. It’s a cover album that really goes around the horn of his genre influence. Tracks like Frozen Sky from cEvin Key and Ohgr with a brash rising wave. KMFDM covers like Godlike are an explosive artillery assault. Then switching gears to goth rock cowboys Fields of the Nephilum with a measured ballad. The whole record is a prayer to the music that has moved him, and a vision of the future to come.
Hate Dept: New Ghost – Ok this isn’t technically something new. However Hate Dept and Steven Seinbold have been an important fixture of the Industrial scene for a decades. Recently he released a few of their early albums on bandcamp and holy shit. This was the intense sleazy industrial I didn’t realize my heart was yearning for. It’s broken glass and sassafras, full of dance drive and venom. If you are backfilling your collection with the past, I highly recommend. Also if you don’t have his solo project synth Stand Alone, you need to grab that as well. This was a golden ago and done at the top of the curve.
Vazum (Vampyre Villa) – The newest record from our friends in Detroit Vazum. I feel like this band is on the cusp of 90s retro. Everyone is currently on 80’s homage and they are leaning into grundge/Shoegaze. It’s a fresh and familiar addition with a very dark tone. I think this album could be a real breakout for them. In particular the goth anthem “Schema” is a true emotional show stopper.