”Alarma” is the title of the debut album from the enigmatic Swedish Post-Punk band Novitjok based in Gothenburg, it’s not often in my box an LP from newcomers immersive and gripping all the way through.
Around 30 minutes rife with a familiar, yet timeless Goth Post-Punk sound, which started in the early 80s, passing through the second wave of the late 80s / early 90s, to finally arrive at the present day, that creates a gritty diorama of merciless brutality, brooding emotions, and urgently desperate, fierce wails, through a simmering bed of obsessively pulsing bleak bass and steady hypnotic percussion, sliced through by reverb-drenched jarring and sharp, at times jarred, others baritone, restless guitars, the only dim flashes of light in all-encompassing stifling darkness, along with the Sound-like meandering glowing drifts of frozen forsaken synths, whilst haunted Siouxsie-esque vocalizations, wracked with despair and guilt, thoroughly intensified the harrowing unease and toxic anxiety underlying the stark sonic architecture to forbiddingly build relentless prospects of gloom and doom.
I pick “Suicidal hands“, even if, starting from the initial duet, many others would have been an easy choice, that deals with narrative lyrics to describe a cityscape where danger, deception, and alienation wreak havoc on a lost soul from the countryside, whose “Suicidal Hands” choose their own fate.
Deep buzzing bassline ominously warble through erratic dry drum beats, swept back and forth by icy airy desolate keyboard swathes, slowly wavering in the background embroidering into a dramatic ambience of ghostly dirge-like desolated echoes, pierced by persistent abrasive shards of heavily chorused riffage guitar stridency to ensnare stoic, numb depressed female vocals, varying from harsh wailing cries to distant emotional screams to sear desperation and fear through a wicked brew of tragic pain and vicious exploitation.
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