Genre/Influences: Cold-wave, gothic.
Background/Info: Pete Burns is a multi-instrumentalist and producer operating from Edinburgh (Scotland). “Damage” is the first album of the artist and has been released at the end of 2018. The main particularity of the work is the contributions of different guest singers from very different countries. The songs have been sung by Hante (France), Buzz Kull (Australia), Delphine Coma (USA), Antipole (Norway), Undertheskin (Poland), Killjoi (USA), The Shyness Of Strangers (Canada), Pedro Code (Portugal), Nate Jespersen (Canada), New Haunts (UK) and Bragolin (The Netherlands).
Content: Kill Shelter is clearly driven by good-old cold-wave music while characterized by an extremely dark sound creation. This artist can easily compete with the darkest groups from the 80s. The guitar playing is predominant while the low, vibrating bass lines are chilling. The songs are moving from fuzzy guitar parts to other typically, mewing passages while I also noticed a more psychedelic play as well. The different vocalists seem to have been chosen with care and all totally fit to the work of Pete Burns. Notice by the way the last song is an instrumental..
+ + + : Pete Burns plays guitar, bass, e-bow and synths. He appears to be a talented guitarist, but also a genius bass player. The typical e-bow effect injects a great fuzzy touch and the electronic arrangements feel like the cherry on the cake. Kill Shelter as accomplished a masterpiece piece. The music is much more than simply an 80s emulation; it stands for the truly 80s spirit. If cold-wave has been always obscure, “Damage” must be an apotheosis in darkness. You’ll feel the bass lines vibrating in your throat while the guitar has something elevating. I also have to say a word about the vocalists, which nearly all feel like being part of the band. They clearly have been selected for their great vocals skills, creating a perfect match with the music.
– – – : It’s not really a regret, but I hope Kill Shelter will find its singer.
Conclusion: This album is without a shadow of a doubt the most accomplished- and simply best work I’ve heard in the genre on Unknown Pleasures Records. But it also is one of the best releases in its genre for quite a long time ago. “Damage” stands for the birth of a new gothic icon!
Best songs: “Get Down ft. The Shyness Of Strangers”, “The Happening ft. Killjoi”, “Black String ft. Nate Jespersen”, As Trees Do Fall ft. Bragolin”, “No Regret ft. Undertheskin”, “Sever ft. New Haunts”.