With a name taken from a series of experimental short films by Richard Kern and a list of influences that includes such avant-garde pop luminaries as Sparks, you’d hope that Quebec’s Manhattan Love Suicides would sound a little more interesting. While it’s admirable for a band to intentionally isolate itself from current trends, in this case the end result seems to be songs that sound like second-rate Skinny Puppy demos instead of second-rate Wumpscut or Apoptygma Berzerk remixes. There are some promising moments, like the old-school synth lines running through “Second Side” or the cold atmospheric rhythms of “Untitled,” but that promise is marred by things like the retro hipster electroclash of “Angst” or the overuse of reverb on “A Dangerous Game.” “Radiostation” is by far the standout track; though it borrows a lot from early industrial dance music, it has the same gritty catchiness of such early industrial dance hits as “Smothered Hope.” Once Manhattan Love Suicides get a bit more comfortable in the studio, let’s all hope they turn out more tracks like this.
Visit www.manhattanlovesuicides.com for more information.
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