Friday, November 25, 2016

Albums of the Year # 31 Exploded View

Where the dark things are. A lot of them mass and gather within Exploded View's eponymous debut album from earlier this year. If you want something new and dark and frankly a lot of us do sometimes, this is as good as any record I've heard of its type this year.

Fronted by British journalist turned musician Anika with a group composed of a Swede and two Mexicans. Recorded in Mexico City, it's a jagged, bleak and rhythmic set of songs and moods. Not unprecedented of course by any means, Anika's voice is unmistakably reminiscent of both Nico and Ian Curtis and the band built a driving, paranoid mass of sound that will recall everyone from Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Cabaret Voltaire, Suicide, Bauhaus, Einsturzende Neubaten and other gloom drenched Germanic industrial leaning artists.

It's hypnotic, compelling stuff. Unlikely to fill you with joy, but I was impressed by how cleverly such familiar basic ingredients are stirred into something fresh. You may feel you've been transported to a crypt and find yourself surrounded by haunted Gothy types you don't feel comfortable with who are up to some odd threatening ritual of their own. Exploded View. An Addams Family for the new millennium. 

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