London based synth-trio SAVAGE FURS do not even try to disguise the source of their inspirations. They are indeed steeped in the dark electro sounds of The Eighties, although there is an element of their own individuality and musical interpretation thrown into the mix.
This five-track 12” vinyl / digital download release however perhaps emphasises the former more than the latter. Not that that makes it a ‘bad’ record in any way, though I’m pretty sure they will, as a band, come across as a far stronger proposition whilst playing in some sleazy, late-night Club. The music has that (in a good way) scuzzy, arty feel that’s sure to get the crowds dancing on beer-soaked floors up and down the country – and, Ill wager even more so across central Europe and the Baltic states.
Not that I’m trying to get rid of these guys! I actually like this EP very much – well, for the most part.
Opening track ‘Thrones Of Young Ice’ is probably my favourite. There is an indication of what’s to follow with the background sax and vocals that hint a little at Simon Le Bon, but what gives this four and a half minute song that ‘edge’ is the constant bass line. It does remind me (quite a lot, I have to say) of The Gaa Gaa’s ‘Hypnoti(z)ed’ track, only maybe a couple of octaves lower. Still good though – judge for yourself:
‘Sick Lamborghini’ has Duran Duran’s ‘The Reflex’ written all over it. However, this track is a bit more random and all over the place. A little discordant; freaky of sorts! And excellent for all that!
‘Mohair Metal,’ is a little more ‘ordinary.’ It doesn’t stand out for me, although while it’s playing it’s pretty enjoyable – if ultimately forgettable. The chugging guitar riff adds to the decent beat, but I personally think this one falls between the two stools of Dark Wave and New Romantic styles and ends up as neither.
‘Asphalt Sorcery,’ picks up the interest levels. It’s apparently a ‘surreal ode to Grace Jones’ and it certainly has that smooth-groove feel of a generic Ms Jones track. It also sounds a bit like David Sylvian (Japan) usurping the aforementioned Simon Le Bon as lead vocalist in Duran Duran. Yeah – a pretty interesting combination, all said.
The final track on the EP is a ‘Club Mix’ of ‘Sick Lamborghini.’ Although it’s better than the original version with, I would say, more prominence given to the bass and sax, I’m not going to bore any regular readers with my thoughts on re-mixes. ‘Nuff said.
Retrospective sounds of The Eighties don’t quite do it for me, but Savage Furs have at least learned from ‘The Masters’ of that era, and taking this EP on a ‘stand alone’ basis, it’s a promising debut – but probably more effective in a Club situation.
(Available as a download and through www.savagefurs.com from 28th March)
(7.5 / 10)