Jan 2020 13

Album CoverChris Connelly
Album: Death It to Love
Category: Experimental / Noise / Industrial
Label: No Devotion Records
Release Date: 2019-09-02


If one were unaware of Chris Connelly’s history in the industrial music scene, then it would be easy to be taken aback by the prevalence of folk and art rock in his solo outings, usually balancing poetic lyrics and energetic melodies with a touch of noisy atmosphere. However, with Death It to Love, Connelly seems to have taken the noise to a bit of excess; as the EP’s five tracks were constructed from soundscapes and incomplete songs, he allows the tracks to proceed in an almost spontaneous and fluid manner, the traces of melodic progression and structure steadily eroding into a dissonance mélange of pure audio fetish. At over 16 minutes, “Graspering Whisp” is perhaps the best example of this – rhythmic patterns wax and wane like the waves of the sea filtered through distorted bass, guitar, and synth, Connelly’s layering of heavily effected voices seemingly complementing as much as clashing wish each other; it’s impossible to truly distill the track down to specifics as each movement presents divergent elements that are as challenging to a listener’s mental stamina as they are fascinating in the extreme. Similar moments on the EP include the insidious and insistent bass pulse of “Candid” like a heart monitor on the fritz, only to be countered by pianos that offer some semblance of a melody, only to create more sonic disarray, or the electrified rhythms and phased sustained of “MothMeister,” Connelly’s voice so loud and present that his usually soothing croon becomes jarring and even a bit repellant (probably deliberately so). But the true standout is the pastoral “Saliva Beach (Death It to Love),” as strums of serene and effects-laden acoustic guitar are set amid the sounds of the beach, his vocals wispy and occasionally flippant as he enters into a seeming bit of freeform poetry in his Scottish brogue; it almost feels like an electronically filtered rendition of Pink Floyd’s pre-Dark Side of the Moon material, proving that even with the clamor of machines and noisy samples, Connelly’s songwriting can shine through. In some regards, Death It to Love feels almost like a precursor or collection of outtakes from the following Sleeping Partner release as both find him taking the listener down unexpected paths of sonic exploration, though thankfully without abandoning completely the art rock predilections of his previous outings.
Track list:

  1. New Tendencies
  2. Candid
  3. Graspering Whisp
  4. MothMeister
  5. Saliva Beach (Death It to Love)

Chris Connelly
Website, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, Bandcamp
No Devotion Records
Website, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, YouTube
Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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