The History of Colour TV “Emerald Cures Chic Ills” (Saint Marie 2013)
The graphic cover art and punny title of these Berlin-based shoegazers’ debut album gives a good indication of the uneasy music that lies within. On the surface, the swirling guitars, heavily distorted chorale vocals, and no nonsense song titles like “Let’s Get Sick”, “1-800-Badnite”, and “I Knew It Was Wrong But Did It Anyway” suggest a somewhat disenchanted sociopath at work here. But The History of Colour TV have a knack for slipping catchy melodies in amidst the maelstrom that makes one sit up and take notice. This is not your father’s Shoegaze, but an exciting nu-gaze/blackgaze hybrid that brings soaring electronics and traces of black metal to the party.
“Suddenlines” and the yearning ballad “SXRX” are actually quite pretty (although the latter’s jagged shards of white-noise guitar shrieks are quite unsettling), the aforementioned phone number song has an alluring Clan of Xymox charm about it, and the epic “Mend” will blow your socks off and shatter windows for miles around. Closer “Going To Stay” (how’s that for a punny oxymoron!) wraps things up with a gently cascading swirl to help re-establish some decorum. Nevertheless, the disk (vinyl is also available – yay!) should come with a warning for headphone freaks: “May cause permanent hearing damage.” THIS IS LOUD! Imagine your favourite 4AD bands turning up their amps to 12 and having at it and you’re almost there. A welcome addition to the genre. They are touring Germany throughout the next month so be sure to catch them if you’re in the area.
Review made by Jeff Penczak/2013
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