So. Welcome to v12.0 of amodelofcontrol.com.
2016 in Review:
It is still something of a work-in-progress – I’ve only so far managed to get the content from 2016 back onto the ‘site – but hopefully this is a much cleaner, easier layout to read, and I’ll add the rest of the content progressively over the next few weeks.
Why change? Well, I’ve been using Drupal for a while, and yes, it is a powerful CMS, it is an utter pain in the arse to change anything and it isn’t as secure as it was. So, I’ve moved to WordPress, using the new Dreamhost variant of it, and we’ll see how get on.
Anyway, usual posting will now resume, with Tuesday Tens as normal, and coverage of Infest to come soon. Here’s this month’s ten tracks.
Track of the Month
I’m Sorry (So Sorry)
Cygnets came to prominence with two great albums in 2014 (yes, they released two albums in one calendar year), and their extraordinary single Gallows was runner up in the amodelofcontrol.com tracks of 2014 list. So there has been some anticipation for new material, and the first taste of that finally dropped last week just in time for their appearance at Terminus over the weekend (which by all accounts, was quite a performance). Happily, the new single is a sparkling return, a hard-edged synthpop song with yet another soaring chorus that, like at least one other in this week’s list, is an almighty earworm. The video is also a hoot. Now, about getting this band to play the UK… (Their new album Alone/Together comes in September and can be pre-ordered now)
You Don’t Get Me High Anymore
I know next-to-nothing about this band, but decided to give this song a go following a recommendation from Jason in Chicago, and I’m glad I did. From what I have gleaned online, they are another synth-trip/hop-rock duo (of the many out there), but on the basis of this song alone I’ll absolutely be picking up their imminent third album. Right from the off the elastic beat draws you in, they then drop away before the chorus for the vocals to take precedence, before a massive chorus hook completes the deal. Seriously, since I first heard this I’ve not been able to budge the chorus from my brain – a high I’m going to keep hitting.
Repurposed, futuristic retro-industrial strikes again. Dependent’s new signing 2nd Face is intriguing, once again taking a different spin on a familiar style – complete with thumping, juddering kick drums, drilling sampled guitars, jagged synths and audible, intelligable vocals that aren’t of the goblin variety. This is great, and with an album coming, this could be well worth picking up.
You know, I’d rather gone off Aesthetic Perfection in recent times, as Daniel Graves seemed to be moving in a direction that didn’t really appeal to me any more. But with the release of this new single, maybe our paths are crossing again, as this is fantastic. Use of a Ti Speak N Spell adds a memorable hook to the song, but the rhythm is a sinuous, groovy thing, and I can see this absolutely slaying industrial dancefloors over the next few months.
I Will Suffer
Old Fashion Hellfire
Thanks to Giles at Armalyte (and his US contact) for passing on this outstanding artist from the Pacific North West – a brilliantly produced, nasty industrial-metal-psych hybrid that brings to mind AntiChrist Superstar-era Marilyn Manson. Actually, not just that, but also the chaos of American Head Charge and Mushroomhead, too. There are chugging riffs, electronic beats, snarling vocals, fist-pumping, anthemic choruses and a whole swirl of synths leaving a dirty fuzz over the songs. Pick of the album for me is I Will Suffer, and I’ll bet this band will break out at some point.
Last year’s Die Krupps album V – Metal Machine Music was really rather good – DK doing their industrial-metal hybrid as they’ve done for many years – without ever being exceptional. It was fantastic live, mind. Some months on from the album, they’ve unexpectedly released a new single, a reworked version of album highlight Alive In A Glass Cage, featuring German metalcore band Caliban. It isn’t massively different, really – just the guitars pushed very much to the fore – otherwise it is still Die Krupps through and through. And that’s no bad thing.
Kill Your Darlings
Mesh are back, and regular as clockwork, it’s a big sing-a-long synth-rock track, full of deceit, disgust and a deep sense that all is not well. I’ve found with recent Mesh albums that the lead singles are far from the best songs on them (the last album – which seemed to divide opinion rather – I absolutely loved), which is an interesting tactic. But then, Mesh have such a devoted fanbase that they can pretty much do as they please – and that has led them down some interesting directions in recent years, so here’s hoping the new album continues that.
Saw this new(ish) artist open things at BST Hyde Park (Massive Attack) at the beginning of July, and I rather liked what I heard – snappy synthpop that attracted quite a crowd. By miles the best track was the opener, and title track to her debut album – a sinuous rhythm and sunny chorus (despite the song apparently being about panic attacks!) along with a deep and dirty bassline underpinning it. Certainly an artist to watch.
Let’s be honest, this is a band who are very much of the view “if it ain’t broke…”. But despite being a particularly unseasonable song (and video – it looks like it was bloody freezing during filming), this is quite great – a gentle intro steadily builds into a fist-pumping song that I could easily imagine a large crowd roaring the chorus back to them. Also, this appears to be Justin in a more reflective mood lyrically, as he uses the metaphor of the seasons to leave behind the past and move on.
Black Wings EP
A recent plea for new music on my Facebook feed brought a number of interesting new (to me, anyway) acts to the surface, and the pick of them so far has been this band. Described to me as a cross between “the Bad Seeds and the Velvets”, they were not wrong. There is a decadent, dark feel to this song as it crawls by on picked guitar, rumbling bass and squalling violin, while the vocalist’s deep baritone suggests a life of red wine and cigarettes. This is band that I’d need to see in a darkened, smoky room – a goth club simply wouldn’t do them justice. Either way, we need them playing in London, stat.