Review in Terra Relicta Webzine
One album, Double Eyelid, Seven Years, ten tracks and a countless palette of vigorous images. I have never struggled before to put down some words on an album, as with this one. Not because I would try to look for bright points in a boring album, but because this album is so extraordinary; so emotional, intelligent and thought provoking, it is incredibly difficult for me to put all the imagery and feelings I encountered with this album, down. Formed in 2009 and emerging from Canada, Double Eyelid consist of its mastermind and remarkable vocalist Ian Revell, Karl Mohr on guitar and Benjamin Mueller Heaslip behind the keyboard. Presenting the band – that’s the easy part. Now onward to the music on Seven Years. Here we go.
No, I cannot give you the genre; simply because Double Eyelid is something you have never heard before. Experimenting with death rock, electro rock, darkwave and glam rock and adding a lot of dramatic moments to the sound, is probably the easiest way to go. This album is so incredibly dense, yet so fluid, it’s almost surreal. And while I was listening to it, it got all these strange and unconnected associations; varying from musicians such as Michael Jackson, Christian Death, Nine Inch Nails, David Bowie and Nina Hagen and literary works, like Bram Stoker’s gothic horror masterpiece Dracula and the absurd and avant-garde play The Bald Soprano by Eugene Ionesco. Yes, this album is everything: artsy, avant-garde, dramatic, dark, passionate, flirty, romantic, weird and so incredibly profound. The complex structure combining electronic features with pure death rock guitar driven melodies, additional piano tunes and entrancing vocals create very theatrical and romantic atmosphere, filled with pathos, despair, obnoxiousness and well – on the other side – love, romanticism and affection. Some songs are more slow-paced and almost dreadful or even vile, such as ”She’s Falling”, while others explore a more rock-on based sound, for example ”The Quick And The Dead” or ”John”. The bass line on the opening track, ”Black Box” seems awfully strange to me though, but I have not to this day deciphered what it reminds me of. Nonetheless, there is no sign of copying anyone or anything, don’t get me wrong, because all in all, the opening song is just as theatrical, obscure and over-the-top, while not trespassing the boundaries of disconnected distortion, as the other tracks. The pulsating sound of ”Diamond Cutter” alongside Ian’s deeply vehement vocals create a special, sexy and intense ambient, which reminds me of what the oozing and tense Nine Inch Nails’s famous song ”Closer” was presenting. Double Eyelid also honoured the late and legendary Rozz Williams by covering ”The Stranger” and decided to end the album with a grandiose, darkly cliff-hanger ”He Fell”.
Seven Years will definitely be one of my top albums of this year; simply, because I consider myself an ”adventurous experimentalist” when it comes to music, and this album simply fits to that. Imagine a painter, standing in front of a blank canvas and splattering all the different colours on it, resulting in creating a beautiful painting, which holds a very strong story behind it. That’s what Double Eyelid does – with music. The splatter becomes reality, becomes art and delivers a message; gloomy, deep, fiery and aesthetic. I am no master in psychology of art (no shit, Sherlock), but this album is an artistic composition, that will evoke a wide palette of emotions and I can only wish for this band to continue the path they are on, bringing us something fresh, unique and so highly addictive in the future.