An album so exquisite you start wondering what quisite might actually be, Double Eyelid fuse charm with a grinning griminess that it’s hard to imagine anyone not being smitten by the majority of these songs, given their variety and consummate beauty.
‘Black Box’ kicks the melodrama off wonderfully with piquant traipsing music, the rhythm mottled, the vocals achingly laboured, pools of iridescent sound rippling around a spooky tale with a sub-strata of itchy funk. ‘Diamond Cutter’ is jolly, trenchant pop sludge, and it’s no wonder Julianne Regan recently did a mash-up between this and Right Said Fred. It’s cheekily drowsy, inclined to noisy histrionics.
Stern and undulating darkly, ‘She’s Falling’ is a groaning blast with extra vocals from Jay Draper, yet ‘John’ (written by Arthur S. Green) is a saucy post-glam dawdle with a ludicrous charm, including the smartest Bowiesque use of the words ‘bowel movements’ you’ll ever hear. And these wily subtleties and alternatives keep on flowing. ‘Dead Is Better’ has a supremely cool rock guitar presence, enfolding another crushed emotional tale with ‘The Hanged Woman’ hanging gloomily in the air whiskily wispish. ‘The Quick And The Damned’ positively skips over a zigzagging lit guitar fuse, all ZZ Toptastic, with stabbing keys and vocal mania. Terrifyingly trim, that one.
‘Dirty Weather’ is scooped out and desolate, like a distant, wayward cousin of John Foxx, chilled and tremulous. ‘The Stranger’ is triumphantly urging, skittering guitar and stately vocals stretching then slumping grandly in a resounding whirlpool of energy. Like a musical séance ‘He Fell’ unnerves so very gently as it fades and leads us out.
This is an album which impresses massively upon first hearing, then builds into an essential stop on you daily journey if you’re looking for throbbiness with a fun headache and ideas stuffed into sleek sonic cushions. It has the art, the whipping liveliness and the darker atmospheres that all great records should have and it is easily one of the year’s best.