Sunday, September 9, 2012

Drab Majesty - Unarian Dances 8.1

                Drab Majesty recalls the best of the late 80s. Goth elements are reflected in both the lyrics and vocal delivery. ‘Unarian Dances’ is extraordinarily catchy within its specific niche. While it may be dark there is hope behind each one of the songs. As the album progress it moves away from celestial concerns. Eventually it ends up wafting into space. Dream pop explains it. So does shoegaze to a lesser degree. Whatever description is used the songs linger in the mind. 

                ‘Pragmagick’ begins it with something Donnie Darko could have listened to. The sound reeks of dark wave. It is similar to Twin Shadow. Really the main difference is their intense dedication to the original sound, whereas Twin Shadow uses a more ‘polished’ approach. ‘In a Hotel (Somewhere)’ moves into more hopeful territory. A guitar builds itself up into a comfortable groove after a long intro. Here they take a more movement-based approach. Indeed this may be the best track on the whole album. Lush sounds ooze with a steady rhythm keeping it together. ‘Wrecking Ball’ closes the album in a particularly wistful hue. Volume levels are kept deliberately low for emotional resonance. By the time the drum machine comes in the song is nearly over. Other vocals appear in the expense of sound as it loses clarity. 

                This is a labor of love. Despite the large amount of bands mining the 80s, Drab Majesty has a sincerity that is quite refreshing. Vocals are appropriate, hooks are good, and the whole thing is a concentrated form of affection for a sound long gone.

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