New Signs Of Life
- Brand: Death Bells
- Product Code: deathbells-newsignsoflife
Regular Edition in Black vinyl
Death Bells emerged to greater recognition Standing At The Edge of the World, a formidably sleek debut that interlaced primal guitar-wrought grit, lacerating drum strokes and viscous synth-propped dreamscapes. The Australian pair pursue a trail blazed by a potent roster of alternative '80s acts, occupying the decade’s introspective-leaning, less neon-rigged, hinterland: channelling the darker side’s bittersweet lyrical and instrumental guile with commanding self-awareness. Stateside-based since 2018, the former six-piece, now duo of Will Canning and Remy Veselis, continue to co-ordinate a process of affirmation and rejuvenation with New Signs of Life, further entrenching credibility as a tight and effective unit through brooding, brittle bombast suggestive of bands such as Interpol and White Lies. Orienting around a pact of sonorous vocals and rapid-fire rhythmic sensibility, Canning and Veselis excel in crafting a vaulting duality of absolutes, bridging a schism between states of ecstasy and bubbling angst. Death Bells lend fresh lustre to well-trodden traditions, in this sense, exhuming and amplifying the mournful oeuvre of acts such as The Chameleons and the oft-imitated baritone-filtered grandiosity of Echo & the Bunnymen. Inviting new elements into their songwriting style, the two-piece strike an increasingly varied chord that reaches its pinnacle on tracks such as “Two Thousand and Twenty”, adorned with a string of twitching guitar bites and shrouded synth licks, in-part recalling the taciturn thrum of The Jesus and Mary Chain and The Cure’s subterranean tendencies. Broader inflections interject at times, the sophisticated sax-punctuated patina of “Alison” finding the outfit usher in a brighter regime of tonal slants, while the title track harks to The Psychedelic Furs’ predilection for crooning acerbic aloofness, words torn with transitional maelstrom: “Letting it go, letting it go, feeling / Alone even with you / Unsure of what to do”. Wired with an expanding openness to new sounds, Death Bells enhance the gravitas introduced on their first album, subtly modifying without dramatically re-routing course. New Signs of Life, as such, represents not only a rebirth in terms of line-up but signifies the band’s latitude to further nurture accents of their own identity.