Jul 2012 22

Dreams Divide - Puppet LoveDreams Divide
Category: Synthpop
Album: Puppet Love
Stars: 4
Blurb: With a powerful, infectious sound, this British act makes its mark with an exciting debut album that establishes them as a major force in the synthpop field.


 

Although this is their debut under the Dreams Divide moniker, Dave Crout and Gem Davidson have played together in many bands, covering many different musical genres over the years. The experience that they have accrued pays off in spades on this nine track offering as their compositional, musical, and arranging skills are the equal of even the biggest names in synth music, marking them as a major force to be reckoned with. Their music straddles the borders of synthpop and the more melodic end of EBM in a manner that is rare in British bands, characterised throughout by strong, muscular rhythms that underpin a plethora of inventive melodic ideas that, in the case of the more mid-paced offerings such as the opening “John” and the equally purposeful “Faces,” help to keep things moving rather than bogging proceedings down, as can sometimes be the case. The faster “Due” similarly benefits from the multifaceted sound that makes for a more satisfying listen and should ensure the album enjoys a greater longevity. Part of this is undoubtedly down to Alex Mcdougal’s production work but that wouldn’t mean anything were the songs not strong enough to begin with, a fact that’s made all the more exciting by the way the band manages not to ape their influences to any great degree, aside from a slight And One style quirkiness at the beginning of the speedy “Complex” and even this is soon forgotten as it motors along in a most satisfying manner as Davidson makes the uplifting chorus her own with a confident and strong vocal performance. That both of them are such competent vocalists adds a further professional sheen to the proceedings, although Crout’s voice could occasionally have done with being a little forward in the mix as they don’t come along as stridently as they could have done (in contrast to their live performances). This isn’t much of a problem when there are such excellent tracks as “Wise,” which is built around the kind of riff that instantly spells “future classic,” and the even more danceable “Desire,” which builds from its initially minimalistic feel with the duo trading vocal passages into another powerful number in a manner that could possibly see them crossing over into more mainstream areas if that was on their minds. However, it’s on “Fly” that they truly show what they’re capable of as they unleash a truly spectacular track that boasts a panoramic, expansive sound that is more than matched by the soaring vocal performances that it coaxes from both of them; it’s a truly superb track that would have made an excellent closer, but as it is, it’s left to the title track to round proceedings off with another solidly danceable number, rounding off a wonderful album that establishes Dream Divide as a musical force in synthpop.
 
Track list:

  1. John
  2. Complex
  3. Due
  4. Faces
  5. Wise
  6. Desire
  7. Leaving
  8. Fly
  9. Puppet Love
  10. John (Snook Remix)

 
Dreams Divide MySpace http://www.myspace.com/dreamsdividemusic
Dreams Divide Facebook http://www.facebook.com/dreamsdivide
Dreams Divide Twitter https://twitter.com/dreamsdivide
Dreams Divide ReverbNation http://www.reverbnation.com/dreamsdivide
Dreams Divide SoundCloud http://www.soundcloud.dreamsdivide
Dreams Divide Bandcamp http://www.dreamsdivide.bandcamp.com
Glory and Honour Records Website http://www.gloryandhonour.co
 
2011-11-07
 
Carl Jenkinson (carlj)

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