Wednesday 16 January 2013

Review: Endless Shame - 'Elevator'



Initially, the fourth album by synthpop Swedes Endless Shame sounds like a futuristic Pet Shop Boys. From the softly sung lyrics to the chorused backing vocals and keyboard punctuation 'Elevator' is Tennant and Lowe in Scandinavian form. After 'Hear Me Now' (practically an electro homage to the 80s duo) the trio from Sweden make more of a sound for themselves.

'I Am Nothing' is a perfect ebm dance track, slightly darker and with catchy hooks to get big boots moving. 'Lack Of Communication' includes some guitar, enough to compliment the preceding electro sounds rather than making the song 'the rock track'. Continuing to pick up the pace 'Universe' adds more aggressive vocals and beats for an edgier club track. 'Rites' with it's diva-esque vocals is sleazy ebm, with touches of Depeche Mode circa 'World In My Eyes'.

Penultimate track 'Twilight Zone' combines guitars and synths in just the right proportions - they compliment each other rather than fight for attention - and would have been the ideal track to end the album. A song about being lost in darkness (the antithesis of an elevator perhaps?). Despite being one of the quieter tracks the low-key ebm beats and organic string sounds work well making it standout.
Unfortunately the last two songs don't leave much of an impression and might have been better included earlier in the album. 'People Of The Sun' doesn't seem to go anywhere, albeit a pleasant listen, and the final track 'Saviour' doesn't seem to have much point at all. It neither moves the listener (physically or emotionally) and ends up sounding a little cliched, the lyrics asking 'What if I were the son of God?'. As a result the album disappointingly finishes with a sigh rather than a bang.

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