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Cold In Berlin: The Comfort Of Loss & Dust

Third album from the doom-gaze quartet.

With a name and album title like that, you’re not expecting effervescent punk pop and a cover of Walking On Sunshine. But even if these Londoners show little inclination to resist the goth tag, their brand of dry-ice-shrouded, black-clad alt.rock can still surprise you.

The slow, grinding insistence of She Walks and The Sinner’s trudging, diabolic riffs quickly starts to become hypnotic, and when it underpins Maya’s drowning-not-waving, scream-flecked vocals (which manage to sound like Faith-era Robert Smith duetting with Siouxsie), it’s enough to reel in anyone with a taste for goth-rock like your mum used to make.

Fucking Loud quickly builds to an increasingly manic mantra, but disintegrates within two minutes to be replaced by the brooding soundscapes and portentous spoken-word poetry of Mysterious Spells.

It’s all a little melodramatic perhaps, but when it comes to music like this, you leave your self-consciousness at the graveyard gates. And when Pray For Us turns into a plodding but strangely riveting paean to lost souls, as the guitars lurch ever forward like extras from Dawn Of The Dead, you simply have to embrace the horror and enjoy./o:p