From the British hotbed, of goth music, Leeds, Skeletal Family broke out in 1981 with the single “Trees“. There has been a lot of water under the bridge and the band has become one of the lynch pins of the gothic sound. With a wealth of musical experience behind them, Skeletal Family are gearing up to release a new album and they have dropped the new single “My Own Redemption” with video.

The new vocalist is Anneka Faye and she compliments the Skeletal Family sound so very well, sultry and commanding. The guitar work is haunting in shadowy echos, while the keyboard picks out the tune, adding an extra layer of lilting grimness. The video, directed by Danny Hardaker, is shot in a black & white noir style, with thuggish heavy men and a sleazy underground promise.

So, this is the first call to arms for the faithful and the soon to be inducted, with Skeletal Family’s sixth studio album and “My Own Redemption” is a wonderful introduction to an eagerly awaited release. There is the pervasive Family sound but I like the fact they don’t try to stick to a formula either, just making a beautiful post-punk music with a soul.

My Own Redemption | Skeletal Family (bandcamp.com)

Skeletal Family | Facebook

We like a bit of the voodoo music, so when I crossed paths with Voodoo Drummer, I thought….ooohhhh. There is the new single “Set The Controls (Pink Floyd in 7/8 Greek Rhythm)” and yes this is a kind of cover version of the Pink Floyd classic, “Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun“, off their 1968 album, A Saucerful Of Secrets. Now I do say kind off because they have recorded it in a tradition Greek rhythm of 7/8, instead of 4/4 and at the end you get to hear the “Milo mou kokkino” from which the tempo comes. Within all this, they have mixed in John Coltrane’s track, “A Love Supreme”, which is from the album of the same name and possibly one of the most influential and important jazz releases ever.

BUT WAIT! There is the added bonus of not only a Voodoo Drummer playing drums, tubular bells & percussion but also Stavros Parginos on cello, Tasos Papapanos on bass and it features Adrian Stout, of The Tiger Lillies, on musical saw. Yes you read it. MUSICAL SAW. Life is good! The saw makes those wonderful eerily haunting sounds, cello and bass give a hefty weight, pinning the saw down so it doesn’t fly away. The drums and percussion guide you through and it amazing to listen to such a fascinating version. There seems to be only the YouTube version to listen to this project but if you like quirky covers with strong musicianship, then I highly recommend you check out Voodoo Drummer.

Voodoo Drummer | Facebook

http://www.instagram.com/voodoo_drummer/

End of last year saw the debut album, Blacken The Skies released on Metropolis Records, by the South African band Terminal. The end of June, they released the official video for the track “Godfire” which comes off the aforementioned debut album. It is an epic track with driving guitar, huge drum beats and a bludgeoning chorus that should have you up on your feet and dancing. “Godfire” or holy war, but who is right and who is wrong and when does God’s name mean peace instead of war in the name of religion? The video is full of confronting images of modern warfare but as always it is the music that has last word. So if this tickles your fancy, then you need to check out Terminal’s whole album.

Blacken The Skies | TERMINAL (bandcamp.com)

https://www.facebook.com/terminal.industrial

Detroit deathgaze duo, VAZUM have their latest single, “Angel“, awaiting your pleasure. Dropped on June the 24th, it can be found on Bandcamp for name your price.

There is a harkening back to a 90s sound, but my goodness, those guitars sounds so incredibly good. I do like it when they have the dueling vocals through the chorus and the lyrics speak of a person who acts self righteous, however, lacks moral fibre and blames everyone but themselves when caught in a lie.

This might be my favourite song yet by VAZUM. Zach Pliska is the lead vocalist this time and Emily Sturm does a stirling job at backing vocals. There is a heavier accent on the deathrock influence here. It’s hard to describe but the feeling is that VAZUM are becoming ever more comfortable and confident. A cohesive ease so to speak. Beware of any “Angel” as they might beguile you with their light and betray you with a kiss.

VAZUM (bandcamp.com)

VAZUM | Facebook

Legends of the electronic scene. Germany’s X MARKS THE PEDWALK, released the official video of their latest single, “Yesterdays“, which is off their album, New / End, on the Meshwork Music label. The video is beautifully made, cine graphic and rich, complimenting the gorgeous vocals of ESTEFANÍA, a track about family and love that transverse time. It is a perfect synthpop tune and in some ways, reminds me of ABBA, especially with the very human sentiment.

New / End | X Marks The Pedwalk (bandcamp.com)

meshwork music | label for electronic music (meshwork-music.com)

X-Marks The Pedwalk | Facebook

Australia’s deathrockers, Sea Lungs, have launched the new single, “Truffle Pig“, as of the 27th of June. Out on the Sydney label, Mantravision Productions, this sees vocalist and lyricist, Andi Lennon with composer Jarrad Robertson, mixing & mastering by Mantravision’s Ant Banister (Sounds Like Winter). These gentlemen are scholars of past empires and though this seems like a commentary on the child labourers, as young as five years old, in coal mines during the Victorian Era, aka, the Industrial Revolution, it is also looking towards our modern times and the erosion of worker’s rights and dismantling/banning of unions.

The thing that hits me the most to begin with is the rhythmic pattern that is like being in a boat, continuously bobbing up and down, pounded wave after wave but never swamped, as Lennon’s vocals call out over the top as the tether. The guitars crash down, condemning, onto those who don’t learn from the past, in wonderfully poetic prose.

Truffle Pig” just proves that Sea Lungs are going from strength to strength, creating a diverse catalogue of tracks, with which they are honing their sound. It is deliciously dark, melodic and has a political beating heart, so you need your serving of “Truffle Pig“.

Truffle Pig | Sea Lungs (bandcamp.com)

Sea Lungs | Facebook

The duo, Johnathan/Christian have released the single, “Talkin’ About The Wolf“. It is a track inspired by the Ukrainian resistance against a much larger foe, trying to take by force, their county. Johnathan/Christian is joined by The Legion Of Whom, a mixture of talented humans, whom appear in the order of Matt Vowles: Black Angel (guitar), Lee Meadows: The Glass House Museum (bass), Athan Maroulis: NOIR, Steven Archer: Ego Likeness/Stoneburner, Claus Larsen: Leæther Strip, Martin Bowes: Attrition, Alla Miroshichenko: Attrition/Alia Synesthesia (cello), Jeff Diehm: The Last Dance and Ania Tarnowska: I Ya Toyah

Verbose gothic melancholy, wrapped in this wonderfully rich guitar and complimented by the electroincs in a most symphonic manner. Sliding between vocalists is a truly interesting experience, it drags you in to listen to the the words and marvel at the mixture of styles, accents and timbre. They ask what we want to know, ‘how many Putin?’.

“Since the Donbas Invasion in 2014, Ukraine has been telling the world the wolf is coming, and what have we done to help?  As the battle continues, now is not the time to move on. Ukraine needs everyone’s help now more than ever” – Johnathan

The title of the track refers to a Ukrainian saying, ‘talking about the wolf‘, which basically means ‘speak of the devil‘. All proceeds, from the single will be donated to the Come Back Alive Foundation in Ukraine, which was created during the War in Donbas. In return, you get a darkwave track of immense proportions, catchy and chock full of some legends in the business.. Mmmmm, very tasty and remember, you think you are safe until they are at your door.

Talkin’ Bout the Wolf (ft. The Legion of Whom) | Johnathan Christian | JOHNATHAN|CHRISTIAN (bandcamp.com)

Johnathan|Christian | Facebook

The UK’s gothic rockers, Sirens Of Light, released on May the 24th, the single with video, “Revolver“. The band has shortened the title somewhat from the original, being “That’s When I Reach For My Revolver“, which was originally written by Clinton J Conley and recorded by Conley’s band, Mission Of Burma, in 1981. A classic, from a band that was typifying a new post-punk sound coming from the US, like their fellow Americans, The Call.

The rich swell of guitar issues forth and the vocal’s gravely texture, grazes your ears. There is a wondrous force of conviction, sonorous and perfect in its execution. Guitar driven goodness with a dark gothic core.

Revolver”, for me in this particular moment, is a very angry and political song. After the global pandemic and the constant bombardment of media nonsense, we get the feeling everyone feels like reaching for their revolver. That’s why it resonated with me at this moment and was chosen”. – Andy (Sirens Of Light)

You cannot compare this latest version to the original. While the Mission Of Burma version is slower and very much bleaker, Sirens Of Light have put a rocket under “Revolver“, and blown it up into a gothic rock anthem, with all the sparkles.

Revolver (Video Single) | Sirens Of Light (bandcamp.com)

Sirens Of Light | Facebook

Sirens Of Light – Sirens Of Light

Lisa Gerrard & Marcello De Francisci are on the verge of releasing their new album EXAUDIA, on the label Atlantic Curve Records, but before that happens, there is the offering of a new single, “Until We Meet Again“, out of the 17th of June. Gerrard is the vocalist, best known as one half of Dead Can Dance, whilst De Francisci is renowned as a soundtrack composer, with both artists previously working together on soundtracks and their first album, Departum.

Photo byVaughan Stedman and M. De Francisci

Lightness. There is the overwhelming feeling of a supreme weightlessness, in a sea that is Gerrard’s vocals. Sweet and delightful, as they lead to the rush of music, which invades your senses, longingly and wistfully dreaming of days filled with sun and love. A mixture of the exotic and the innocence of a bygone era.

It is sublime when a singer can create art with their vocals, and Lisa Gerrard is no exception. Years of honing her craft, has lead to ability to evoke even the most dormant of memories and stir emotions. Marcello De Francisci has build a musical score around what Gerrard has given him, complimenting and caressing her singing style. No matter the distance, lover’s always find their way back, “Until We Meet Again“.

Home | LISA GERRARD

www.marcellodefrancisci.com

Lisa Gerrard | Facebook

Vancouver’s Front Line Assembly, are an industrial institution in their own right. From the album, Mechanical Soul, which came out at the beginning of the year to much fanfare, comes the Black Asteroid remix of “Purge“, out on Metropolis Records.

There is the build up with these sludgy beats, which are bombastic, dragged along by the insistent electronics. Leeb’s vocals growl and echo eerily, adding to the claustrophobic ambience.

The original version is more subdued, with less emphasis on the big rhythm and more on the vocals, while the mix is something I could definitely see heating at a night club floor, with those nightmarish overtones. FLA are absolutely one of those bands that keep producing great music.

Purge (Black Asteroid Remix) | Front Line Assembly (bandcamp.com)

https://www.facebook.com/frontlineassembly