MICK MERCER's journal

2003 A.D.

Their first new release, trumpets the sleeve sticker, in ten years, and calls them LA-Deathrock Legends, which might be pushing things a little too far, but they certainly had a good reputation at one time.

There’s half the originators here in Warren and Billy, and they bounce back in ‘Standing In The Rain’, with riffs central to the core, and the squalls and squeals accompany prosaic utterances. “I can drown in the shallow waters of a single tear.” No you can’t, but this boasts exemplary structure. Unfortunately it all sounds like it was modelled on ‘Floodlands’.

The rest is far better. ‘Life Of Sin’ is light, with a nicely nagging melody, great burrowing bass and crystal guitar, ‘Ranjipur’ stagers, unbends slowly, and some adventurously high guitar unfurls, the songs strides away elegantly. There’s no real vocals, and it’s a deliciously twisting delight.

The poorly produced ‘Eleven Eleven’ sees the most committed and powerful vocal deliverance, for all the oblique lyrics, and with lots of scurrying notes and a shuffle beat they come to life in a fulfilling rock manner, sounding far more natural than the opener, without too many frills, and far from outdated.

Hardly a resounding return then, but it’s nice to have them back.