Category: Goth / Rock
Album: Realignment EP
Blurb: Drawing on but not limited to their collective experiences, Abbey Nex and Valerie Gentile strike out on their own with a new brand of electrified goth and noise/rock.
Having established themselves in the goth/industrial scene performing with the likes of Combichrist, Psyclon Nine, Angelspit, the Genitorturers, and Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Valerie Gentile and Abbey Nex take the next step in their musical evolution with Abbey Death, stepping out of each other’s solo projects to forge a new path together. With the Realignment EP, the pair have crafted four tracks that offer a taste of their collective capabilities, full of atmospheric walls of overdriven guitar, shrill electronic accompaniment, topped off by the tradeoff of male and female vocals. Things kick off with the bouncy groove of “The Outside,” a throbbing bass and guitar passage underscoring resonant and reverberating vocals that call to mind the earlier gothic sound of The Cult. The same can be said for “Subtract Your Mind,” the pulsating electronics adding a sense of rhythmic tension that works well with insistent tempo and Nex’s dissonant vocals in the verses. Throughout the EP, Gentile’s soaring melodies bear a resemblance to the likes of Siouxsie Sioux, wavering just slightly to enhance the sense of urgency that works well with Nex’s less polished approach, although it can seem a bit distressing on “Dirty Confessional” as his voice hovers off key. Nonetheless, the song is one of the EP’s more memorable moments as the grinding guitars and Gentile’s chorus vocal gives way to some disturbing samples, all of which elevate the song to a harrowing ambience that would’ve ended the EP quite well. “Star Merica” ends the EP dubiously with some of the noisier, more industrial aspects of the Abbey Death sound with stuttering samples and sustained distortion, coming across like a maniacal hybrid of early Killing Joke and mid ‘90s Medicine. From a pair that has quite a bit of history playing with the heavy hitters of today’s scene, it’s intriguing that the Realignment EP bears such a distinctively old-school vibe; the production seems almost intentionally downplayed to allow for the band’s sense of erratic and noisy discourse to play to its utmost effect, which is sure to be disconcerting to many who would’ve preferred a more polished presentation. Still, it does bode well for Abbey Death that the duo’s first outing together demonstrates a consistent and singular sound and style, clearly drawing on experience but not limited to it. It will be interesting to hear how Abbey Death develops from this point on.