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Brooklyn duo Opal Onyx this week drop their debut album of murky and dreamlike darkpop, which pairs clear Zola Jesus-ish vocals with a backing which mixes eerie acoustic Americana with some seriously ghostly, muffled loop-pop action that's quite unusual and effective.
They open strongly with 'Black And Crimson', a womb-like swell of looped processed sound that plods mysteriously along in a gloopy Forest Swords-meets-Ela Orleans smudge while singer Sarah Nowicki croons with a silky soulful confidence that's at odds with the surreal sound-mulch she's singing over. 'Personal' showcases the exact opposite side of their sound - a clear and richly arranged alt-country-ish sound that's not far from Dark Dark Dark.
The rest of the album which follows these two tracks tends to fall somewhere between these two sides, getting particularly droney and downbeat in the middle on 'Fruit of Her Loins' and 'Desperate' before some Shadows-ish guitar twang and jangling rhythms morph this into a sort of anti-gravity post-blues in 'The Devil'. The weird blasts of woozy tone which anchor closer 'Delta Sands' are worthy of mention too. I'm finding that I'm generally liking the songs with more of a focus on the ambient/sound-art side of their aesthetic than the more countryish ones, but it's all very classily realised and genuinely unusual.
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- Delta Sands by Opal Onyx
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