Perhaps you’re feeling a bit tender and lovelorn, or perhaps you’re experiencing a bout of residual post-Valentine’s heartbreak, of which listening to a fine cover version of Chris Isaak’s Wicked
ExLovers are a five-piece ‘shoegaze’ band from London: yes, shoegaze permeates and concocts through their sound heavily, the strongest influences springing from Joy Division, Sonic Youth and The Jesus And Mary Chain, grinding and swelling away somewhere in some kind of concrete, grey-skied miasma. Impeccable influences such as these, the ability to pull off a good cover effort and their facility to counterbalance emotional intensity and avoiding pathetic dirges inevitably means I’m going to favour them and not allow them to be simply written and ebbed off amongst the tide of frivolous and forgettable shite out there which always multiplies like a sexually conceived rash.
The opening stretch of Wicked Game instantly denotes a mournful, funereal feeling, backed by layered instrumental work and vocals, which are as spectral as they are gender-neutral. There’s something incredibly emotionally powerful about it, meaning that it’s something to get too easily wrapped up and retreated deeply in. It’s a fine milestone from ExLovers, and furthermore somewhere where they can demonstrate their abilities with cathartic potency: but does anyone reckon they’ll ever take their eyes away from their shoes?
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