Jun 2018 28

Lords of Acid - Pretty in KinkLords of Acid
Category: Electro / Industrial / Techno
Album: Pretty in Kink
Blurb: Like the drunk girl shouting “shots” in an attempt to keep the party going, this latest album from Lords of Acid struggles to keep up with the band’s past efforts, despite yielding some good experimental moments.


Ah, Lords of Acid – the electrosexual powerhouse that has since the early ‘90s provided audiences with many a lascivious lyrical pleasure. Never a group to be pigeonholed into one particular style, Praga Khan and his revolving door of musical miscreants have blended aspects of virtually every form of electronic music with playfully pornographic lyrics to allure and arouse even the staunchest stoic. After a long period of inactivity, 2012’s Deep Chills saw the Lords return with a vengeance, followed by a busy tour schedule that demonstrated the band’s enduring appeal. That’s why it’s a small shame that the latest outing, Pretty in Kink presents some of the group’s most experimental yet least effective material.

With co-producer and songwriting partner Erhan Kurkun, Khan does well to craft each track as a sexualized universe unto itself, celebrating all forms of carnal and chemical desire. In keeping with the tradition that no two Lords of Acid albums have shared the same lead vocalist, Marieke Bresseleers now takes on the role of acid queen for Pretty in Kink. She certainly proves up to the task, demonstrating a variety of vocal acrobatics throughout the record that put her as much in the league of Ruth McArdle or the incomparable Jade 4 U… so much so that one might be hard pressed to distinguish her from any of those past vocalists, but this is less to do with her and more to do with the album’s general lack of personality. For instance, “My Demons Are Inside” bears more than a passing resemblance to the classic “Rough Sex,” starting off with a similar bed of pads and soulful vocal wails, Khan’s darkly sensual spoken verses hinting at a powerful chorus about to hit you right in your loins… except that in the case of this track, its lack of a strong lyrical hook renders it, dare I say, impotent. Similarly, tracks like “Break Me,” “Pablo Escobar,” and “Sex Cam Girl” hit with the same electrified rock vibe that made Voodoo-U such a fan favorite, but despite the lyrics and samples, they feel slightly more inhibited and perhaps too cleanly produced to have the same overt and oozing power. The same could be said of “What the Fuck!” and “So Goddamn Good,” except that the punchy rap hooks atop the chugging guitars and slithering rave synths help to elevate the two songs to the record’s better moments. On the other hand, “Flow Juice” is a delightful bit of rave/pop that is enjoyable enough, even if it’s Lords of Acid by-the-numbers. Then again, “Before the Night is Over” proves one of the record’s strongest highlights as its syncopated beats and bass are topped off by bluesy vocals and blissful pads, the stabs of guitar and synth creating a vibe akin to synthwave. There is also the Paul Oakenfold-meets-Barry Adamson manner in which “Goldfinger” creates an appropriately big brass band vibe juxtaposed with acerbic breakbeats and rocking guitars to make it one of Lords of Acid’s most uncharacteristic but satisfying tracks. And then there are tracks like “Androgyny,” “Ma Fille De Joie,” and the closing “We Are the Freaks,” all reveling in steely dark atmospheres and slow rhythms.

It’s a touch disheartening to say that Pretty in Kink misses the mark in areas that Lords of Acid has always excelled at, while also providing enough nuances to make it not a complete crash-and-burn, but just enough. It would be premature to say that the band is running out of creative steam – the strong live presence in recent tours is proof to the contrary – but this writer can’t help but feel that this record is the sonic equivalent of the drunk girl screaming “shots” at the end of the night when the party is already winding down and half the crowd has already departed. It’s nice to hear Khan and company reaching for new sounds and modes and it’s not without its moments, but Pretty in Kink struggles to dish out the same pleasurable sonic abuse that we’re accustomed to.
Track list:

  1. Break Me
  2. Ma Fille De Joie
  3. Sex Cam Girl
  4. Flow Juice
  5. Like Pablo Oscboar
  6. Before the Night is Over
  7. Androgyny
  8. Goldfinger
  9. What the Fuck!
  10. So Goddamn Good
  11. My Demons Are Inside
  12. We Are the Freaks

Lords of Acid
Website, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, YouTube
Metropolis Records
Website, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, YouTube
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
Amazon Vinyl
Storming the Base CD
Storming the Base Vinyl
Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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