GUTS OF DARKNESS: SECOND ALBUM REVIEW (TRANSLATION)

This is a translation from French to English. Read the original article here: https://www.gutsofdarkness.com/god/objet.php?objet=20294

What happens when you’re husband and wife in everyday life but also play together in the same bands?

In the case of Virgin in Veil and Masquerade, it’s interesting to see how the two bands are feeding off each other without suffocating one another or fusioning and losing their respective identity. This led to the band’s first album having a more “restrained” deathrock vibe and integrating diverse influences.

With Masquerade’s second album, it’s pretty much the opposite: Jacques Saph has participated much more in the songwriting process and you can definitely hear it. The musicians have been working a lot on ambiences and melodies, which is still the case, but in parallel, you can feel this more direct energy, as well as faster tempos.

Those who enjoy the blackest era of the Banshees will be happy as we see again this dark essence, powerful and very far away from candy-coated productions that seem popular in nowadays post-punk scene. Here, there’s passion, emotion, energetic rhythms, screeching guitars and vocals that win you over. Not too raw either, the production of the record is very smooth and allows each instrument to be heard distinctively.

How to put this simply? I have the feeling that, being strongly invested, the musicians are in it even more than on the first album (the drummer works his sticks in an impressive manner, and what to say about this bass, moving around like a shadow?)

The melodic aspect remains very efficient, Suzi is top-notch vocal-wise; without wanting to sound too much of a suck-up, she can, in my opinion, be counted as one of the rare true contemporary heirs of Siouxsie. (Just listen to “Zeitgeist”, “Faraway Lands”, “They’re After Us”… if you’re still doubting, you’re a lost cause.)

If there would be only one word to describe this album, I’d choose “intense” on every level (melodies and production); each song is a killer in itself and we can bet that we got, in tracks as such as “Tainted Tongue”, “Savagery”, “Too Depressed to Dance” or “Hallucinating” (such amazing guitar riffs!) are goth classics of tomorrow (because the worship of the 80’s icons is great, but it’s also now and here that [goth] is happening.)

The only downside is that so far the album isn’t available (yet) in a physical format; with such quality, it simply needs to be a part of any serious collection. Nobody can hear you scream? No worries, open up your ears and enjoy, it’s a delight!

Rating:
★★★★★☆ (5/6)