ARTIST: VNV Nation
LABEL: Metropolis Records
REVIEWER: Matthew J.
By now, Ronan Harris has all but abandoned any interest in coming off as dark and heavy; on his latest album, only "Nemesis" really qualifies as EBM in the classic sense, and even that is full of slick, if throaty, pop hooks. Funny thing, though, is that VNV Nation really seems more intense than ever. Things like the cheerful synth lines of "The Farthest Star" and gently floating tones of "Secluded Spaces" provide enough contrast to really drive home the point on the more ominous tracks, like the tensely rumbling "Descent" and the simple but effective pounding of drum loops on "Momentum," which is more than a little reminiscent of "Voice" from the band's second album. As on his last release, Harris also has more vocal strength going for him now, so he doesn't sound as overwrought as on his earlier material, nor does he need to rely much on studio effects. This unadorned approach helps add to the emotional intimacy of break-up ballad "Illusion" and gives an extra level of inspiration to the soaring "Carry You." EBM purists aren't going to like it, but let's face it: if you only listen to EBM for the aggression, you were probably never a huge VNV Nation fan in the first place. This might be a kindler, gentler Ronan Harris, but he's also a better musician.
Go to www.vnvnation.com for more information.
|< Prev||Next >|