Music Reviews

Artist: Locust
Title: After The Rain
Format: CD
Label: Editions Mego (@)
Rated: *****
Not to be confused with the San Diego-based bluntly grindcore band, Mark Van Hoen's Locust comes back on the high-quality catalogue of Editions Mego! Even if I didn't speak about it, "You'll Be Safe Forever", the album by which they landed on Peter Rehberg's label a couple of years ago, didn't manage to intrigue me like "After The Rain". Besides the presence of authentic masterpieces like "Fall From Me", "Just Want You", "Do Not Fear" or the dark catharsis of "Corporal Genesis" - the moment when traces of Mark's glorious past as a member of Mark Clifford's Seefeel more clearly resurfaced -, the former album included so many hints to 90ies golden age of electronic music that listeners could feel it lacked in homogeneity in a certain sense. Even if many moments of "After The Rain" sound like a memorabilia from past listenings and although that emotional substrate where nostalgia turns into sweetest melancholy and vice versa doesn't really differs from "You'll Be Safe Forever", these aspects don't tarnish its intrinsic consistency. Well-learned listeners could match some tracks to the symphonic breathes of Tangerine Dream, the youngest releases by In The Nursery (particularly on "Under Still Waters", which features spoken voice by Julie Manescau), the languorous rapture of some synthetic digressions by Harold Budd or even some similarities to Archive's stuff ("Downlands", "To Lonely Shores"), but the stream of consciousness that Locust manages to inspire into listeners since the opening "Snowblind" - thanks to the precious support of Louis Sherman, whose sound machines often revive European 70's electronic music, Mark's formative influences according to his own words, and the seraphic and deeply heart-rending vocals by Celeste Griffin and Candace Miller - and the reduction of the specific gravity of programming, due to the fact it was entirely live recorded, are just some elements of this work of art. Your headphones are going to disclose the other ones.

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