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I seem to have reviewed every Girls Names record to date. Every time the words ‘Echo’ and ‘The Bunnymen’ are 100% guaranteed to feature somewhere within. They are a Belfast four piece who peddle the dark form of indie/rock that was popular in the 1980s with people who wore long raincoats. On tracks like ‘Pittura Infamante’ you can literally hear the rain beating down on dark city streets.
They sit somewhere between Joy Division, The Chameleons, Bauhaus, Crystal Stilts and (weirdly) The Farmers Boys. They use spindly guitars, Steve Severin-like basslines and occasional dark muttered voices. ‘Drawing Lines’ recalls the early pre-fame Simple Minds with its chopped guitars and near danceable rhythm section. Throughout the guitars have all manner of effects on them building up an eerie kind of melancholy. ‘Occulation’ sounds kind of like Martha and the Muffins’ ‘Echo Beach’ played by four befringed art students in winter 1982.
This kind of post-punk sound eschews the angular for the glacial but is no less effective than than the thrashers, their ability to be restrained serves them well and although I’m struggling to find any killer songs although it’s an excellently evocative ride. Perfect for that Haslinden to Blackburn bus ride in driving rain. Limited copies come with a bonus 4 track CD of non-album tracks.
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