Friday, 27 September 2013

Discovery: ETCHES - Let's Move In

Artists that play a mixture of post-punk and electronica are bracketed under the most simple and unoriginal genre title in music, electronic rock. The grouping is for LCD Soundsystem, who are too influenced by Iggy Pop to be an electronic band, but are also heavily involved with dance-punk, meaning they're too electronic to be associated with post-punk. It's a genre that brings to mind several bands, and many who started out in the 00s as British post punk-revivalists: Editors, Franz Ferdinand, Bloc Party, and White Lies. This is the last generation of indie rock, the post-feedback age of Cut Copy and Django Django. Sure, the rock is still there, and omitting guitars from this music is rare for electronic rock, but it's also a happening genre where the bounds of six strings can be broken and manipulated.

ETCHES are a newly formed quintet from Liverpool. They've taken the guitar rock aesthetics of 80s independent rock (Pixies, Joy Division, Pavement) and mixed it with the aforementioned British electronic rock acts of the 00s. When you take the riffs most associated with New York's Interpol and the electronics most likely to be found on an Everything Everything B-side; "Let's Move In" is born. Instead of using synthesizers heavily like with Editors' In This Light and on This Evening, ETCHES have utilised the sound of their baritone vocalist, most associated with the post-punk genre, and they've taken a light approach to their electronics. There’s a stark synthesizer riff acting as the basis for building, which happens rather quickly. The left / right sided electric guitar combat is a common approach, but one that needs to be done to succeed within this bracket of music.

"Let's Move In" has a catchy refrain, backed by defining characteristics like the right sided guitar solo, the reverberated layers of vocals, and the overall song structure; which is very impressive for debut material. This is a song ETCHES can build on. It may be tricky however, to pick them up out of a ditch where their music will almost entirely be placed thanks to genre labelling and the infinite wisdom of reviewers... All genres aside, ETCHES' "Let’s Move In" is a bright spark in a dark hole where the up and comers either fall flat on their faces in mediocrity or reach local/national stardom in the press.


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