Violens -‘Amoral.’ (Static Recital)
Having really enjoyed Violens’ self-titled EP from last year I was really looking forward to reviewing this album. After the first couple of hearings, I must admit that I felt slightly disappointed. A love of eighties jangle pop -and indeed 80s indie in general – no bad thing in itself, but haven’t The Drums rather got that sewn up at the moment? I’d be willing to bet that they own The Smiths, You Can’t Hide Your Love Forever and Lowlife…
Yet by about the third listen, it starts to click. Yes it is very eighties indie-influenced, but even with the listener bearing this in mind, the NYC trio have drawn on their influences to produce a pretty solid debut LP. It is a tad over-produced at times, particularly on opening track ‘The dawn of your happiness is rising’; nevertheless it hangs together quite well as an album.
And while it’s easy to hear their influences, it isn’t if all the songs are re-writes (though if you want to hear a band that shamelessly re-wrote 80s indie stuff, check out Dutch band The Essence who wore their love of The Cure on the sleeves to the point of cringemaking). ‘The dawn of your happiness is rising’ evokes the Smiths at their most upbeat and ‘Acid Reign’ reminds me of prime New Order.
A good start, let’s hope that they find their own voice on their next album.
Amoral is out now on Static Recital.