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CD: Officers - On The Twelve Thrones | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Officers - On The Twelve Thrones

CD: Officers - On The Twelve Thrones

Debut from Leeds band full of impressively poppy gloom-rock

Officers, painting it black

Ah, Goth. It’s a difficult genre to take in any way seriously unless you’re feeling under-appreciated while going through puberty. Then again, like heavy metal, maybe it’s not supposed to be taken seriously, more an enjoyably melodramatic way of roaring angst at the universe through fantasy metaphor.

Officers probably couldn’t give a damn one way or the other and almost certainly wouldn’t welcome the term – but that’s what their music is entirely run through with, and rather fine it is too.

The four-piece hail from Leeds, a Goth Mecca, home to the Sisters of Mercy, and deal in computer-tooled gloom-rock that, according to their press release, tackles “man’s constant battle against the machine of religion, government and the digital form”. So far, so Gary Numan, who makes a fitting guest appearance on the closing “Petals” (actually one of the albums weakest tracks). Lead singer Matthew Southall sounds a tad Pete Murphy and, in fact, the closest musical comparison would be Bauhaus but Officers have their own style, tinted with Marilyn Manson’s industrial pop crunch. Fortunately they also have an arsenal of tunes

“Mosquito” with its fly-buzz synthesizers, doom-funk groove and explosive chorus, is a corker and it’s not alone. From the gradually building anthemic “The Competition Winner” to the twangy twilight balladeering of “Soul Saviour (Mutations)” there’s an unexpected grasp of pop dynamics. Sure they’re harping on about “leaving forever” and “goodbye, feel no pain” on the vaguely suicidal “Good Day to Die”, but really the listener is carried along by the techno punch and gushing sweep of it all. Another recent tuneful band called O Children delved into these unreconstructed Goth waters and received very little attention. With a set of songs this pushy and full of themselves, it would be a shame if Officers didn’t create a few ripples in 2013.

Watch the video for "Petals"

The closest musical comparison would be Bauhaus but Officers have their own style, tinted with Marilyn Manson’s industrial pop crunch

rating

Editor Rating: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

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