VENN are a London + Berlin outfit making their full-length debut with Runes. Nine tracks of slick and sheeny post-punk that gazes out at you from behind a dusky haze, with cold yet longing eyes. Entwined bass and drum lines push relentlessly forward behind beautifully-toned guitar and subtle keyboard textures. The LP is out on Full Time Hobby.
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Recorded at the marvellously named Total Refreshment Centre in London, Venn are a London and Berlin trio who play a nice variation on the current vogue for all things kraut. The synths are squiggling, the drums are suitably Neu-like but right from the get go Venn are not content with simply making kraut shapes, they are writing songs too in a kind of New Order meets Metronomy style. They have all the dark swirling intensity of the former circa ‘Movement’ with gigantic synths battling with spidery the Cure-like guitar lines.
They marry electronica and guitar based music pretty nicely and the songs are catchy. The thing I suppose Venn miss at this stage in their career is a personality. The vocals recall the monochrome delivery of early Bernard Sumner and the influences are as plain as the noses on their faces. But for fans of the best bits of early '80s industrial and post punk Venn provide a tuneful alternative to the current vogue for purely groove based band and it has to be said that on songs like ‘Esalen 64’ and ‘Supernature’ they do hint at a kind of miserable greatness. Keep watching.
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