April was a really tough month. Emotionally, physically, finding the spoons to write anything was more than I could bare. A lot of amazing things came out which kept me company in these dark moments of reflection. Finding a way to describe it and share it with all of you ended up more than I could bare. So tonight for the first time in a long time I find myself in front of the keyboard with that spark again. That sweet inspiration returned, ready to pitter patter my calloused fingers against the keyboard and tell you about some of the great new music which makes this compressing life bearable. I hope you find something new among my musings to share and love.
Cult Of Alia – Patterns Beat Emotion – Brand new single from Dara of Cruex Lies. Pyromancy Disco full of flashing lights and rising smoke. This project is on Cold Transmission which is always a vote of confidence. I love the vocal delivery on this track. It’s fearless and steady with just a hint of snarl. This track also has an energy of the bands namesake from Dune. Swirling sand, science fiction, and spirituality at a fever pitch. I don’t spend enough time in reviews talking about lyrics. This one is a cold razor.
I feel my face will just betray me
So lets destroy those pleasantries
An honest look is just a warning
Of something deep that wants to breathe
Albadore – The Forgotten Future – This album from Flint MI Dj Michael Absher is a tad outside our usual wheelhouse. An electrodelic jazz infused crackle full of Kerouac verse and Ginsberg meter. Timely record scratches to break the trancey silk edges and pay homage to the church of vinyl. 21 distinct tracks with a wide fusion of flavors. Michael really runs the full spectrum of sounds and blends them with precision and cunning. Sometimes I hear a band and think, the primary song writer was a Bass Player/Drummer/Singer, by what the focus seems drawn to. In this ambitious sound you really hear a DJ making music. The focus is on seamless transitions and following the natural path of the listener. Put this album on at your next party and just let it guide the energy of your night.
The Funeral March – Persephone – Rockford, Illinois postwave led by J. Whiteaker breaks the water with a new EP paying homage to a favorite topic of mine Greek Mythology. The first thing you always hear hook you in are the GORGOUS The Cure Pornography style guitar work that really steals the show. I also find myself lost in the misty vocal style Joe croons to cast contrast against The Cure. This EP feels very familiar, it wears it influences on it’s sleeve. It explores enough of it’s own path to feel fresh. The imagery heavy lyrics and romantic weight are a missing and welcome jewel in the modern scene.
Favorite Track: Kiss Me With Your Last Breath – It’s so slushy and hunter green floating above still water. The Cure guitar influence is very heavy here but the slippery electronic drums and Joe’s ghostly echo vocals make dancing lights to capture the imagination.
Fixed Lens – Swept Out To Sea – New single release from Berlin razor synth band I was turned onto by Nichole Ferree who runs the Boston Dark Spring festival. This has that lovely driving bass and infectious guitar delay of post punk, but the vocals lean HARD into the punk aspect. The energy is reckless, dangerous, speeding through the underworld a split second from destruction. Instant fan.
ego likeness – Live to Tell – The first new release from goths premier couple Donna and Steven in a hot minute. A Madonna cover. Madonna is sacred to me, she changed pop music forever. Gave it soul, made it matter, changed forever how we think about women’s sexuality. Certain artists I really wouldn’t recommend a cover of. How would you add to it or change it? Madonna is firmly in that category. The only way it ever works, is a fresh take by someone who displays such a reverence for the source material. That the original soul burns through in their voice. That is what Donna does here. That is what she captures, and it is fuking beautiful.
G.W. Childs IV – You Don’t Know – I’ve been talking about the Yee Haw synth cowboy G.W Childs a lot recently. Paired up again with living legend John Fryer to paint an electric pastel desert of tumbling weeds and neon hover cars spewing sand and racing back home to his family on the ranch. It’s an electronic Yaz infused cattle drive into the sunset. It features four remixes of the stand out single “Tarrent County” by some of my favorite artists Ashes Fallen and proto goth legend Rodney Orpheus (The Cassandra Complex). Available on COP International.
thePicassos – Weird Sisters (feat. Sarah Rose) – My feet are immediately tapping for this swing rich team up of Detroit eclectic rockers ThePicassos and Sarah Rose of (Sarah and the Safe Word) on this run away wooden rollercoaster through an abandoned carnival. This baseline is high stepping zoot suit fire and skeleton shimmer. The Picassos have become masters of taking any fringe style and making it distinctly their own. i really can’t wait to hear where they go next. Charles is a modern-day poet of experience beyond just words in a song.
The Bellwether Syndicate – Vestige & Vigil – Chicago darkscene darlings William Faith, Sarah Rose, Philly Peroxide, Stevyn Grey, and Corey Gorey with their eagerly anticipated full length album which has immediately concurred the airwaves. In 2023 if you are going to release an album, I think it is key that it runs a vast range of styles and emotions while maintaining a primal core which defines you. This is what Bellwether Syndicate knocked out of the park on the first swing. From driving hot rod flame spewing bangers like “Noir Thing” to old school gothic rock anthems like “We All Rise” it’s a twisting maze of human experience full of complexity and intention. Once you get past the fist pumping energy and absorb the lyrics the political punk rock ethos cuts another layer to appreciate. Every baseline and shimmering guitar reminds you of the rock roots that cast a reflection to Faiths quintessential darkwave vocals. It’s easy to get lost in thoughts of how is this the first full length album from this band. Until you take time to add the experience and catalog of the individual parts.
Favorite Track: Republik – Hard to go wrong with any song on this expertly crafted album. This single has always held such a captivating tempo and delivery that it randomly leaps into my head and explodes a electric pulse of pure energy . The toms, the pin prick guitar leads, the unstoppable yet elegant vocals make this song an unforgettable banger on an album chocked full of them.
I haven’t interviewed The Bellwether Syndicate, that is an unforgivable crime I will correct shortly. You really need this record.
I hope you found something that moved you. I hope you follow and like our page and others like it. There is a glorious dark scene Rennaissance happening and there is no time like the present to jump on board.