Reviews

Danse Macabre

Author: John
04/21/2003 | inkdrinker.com | www.inkdrinker.net | Album Review
It's probably been a long time coming, anyway. Punk and ska bands have been picking up keyboards and buzzy synth sounds have found their way back into enough popular music that it was only a matter of time before we learned that the sound of the future is the sound of history repeating. Few places is it more evident than in Danse Macabre, where the Faint faithfully recreate new wave and, with just a bit of modern flavor, give it a sharp new set of teeth.
The trip back in time begins on "Agenda Suicide," sounding like a sterile operating room with the cold mechanical pulse of drum machines and little melodic blips, leading up to the goth-y, almost symphonic punch of keyboards and dark, and crooning dark vocals that cut to a close with a poisonous hiss. Other tracks attempt to recreate the feel of "Agenda Suicide," with a few other notables like the pulsing, vocoder-heavy "The Conductor," and "Let the Poison Spill From Your Throat," which takes an undeniably cheesy synth-line and, like magic, manages to pull a menacing sexiness out of it all.
The real standout, though, comes two-thirds through in the form of "Posed to Death." Remaining pretty spare all the way through, it feels like the odd-man-out; a simple kick-drum/clap loop sends the song skipping along, punctuated by the drum machine's occasional machine-gun bursts of sound and vocals that move like a bouncy-ball in a closet.
Of course, the novelty of Danse Macabre can wear off, and in some of its weaker numbers, it does. But there's some credit due to any group who can make new wave this hot, and make us forget Flock of Seagulls ever existed.
Danse Macabre

Danse Macabre

LP / CD / MP3