Album Review: Deadcuts – “Dark Is The Night”
It’s good to see Mark Keds back up and recording again. Back in my early teens, The Senseless Things (along with Carter USM and The Wonder Stuff) were one of the first guitar bands your correspondent really became a fan of, and their three major label albums (The First Of Too Many, Empire Of The Senseless and especially their swansong Taking Care Of Business) are still records that I listen to regularly on my iPod all these years later. And, lest we forget, it was Mark joining The Wildhearts very briefly that got me into being a fan of Ginger and co as well, so it’s safe to say that without the Things, my musical education would’ve been very very different.
Banish all thoughts of fraggle from your mind though, because Deadcuts are a very different proposition. Borrowing heavily from ’80s goth music, Dark Is The Night is a spooky and sinister record, but you can’t help but be drawn in by its darkness. The Cure-style chiming guitars of Kill Desire and Dusk Chasers draw you in with their hypnotic rhythms, while the Jesus & Mary Chain indebted sonic chaos of Pray For Jail and Mary Disorder shows this as being a band with their heads firmly back in the ’80s. But that’s fine with me – let’s face it, goth music back then was infinitely cooler than it is now. And when co-vocalist Beatrice Brown lends her vocals to the sinister duet of Floods or the stripped down Ragged Star, it only shows just how versatile this band are.
Make no mistake, it’s been a long wait, but Dark Is The Night is the triumphant return we were all hoping for. Ably backed by ex-Skuzzies guitarist Jerome Alexandre, Wonder Stuff bassist Mark McCarthy and drummer Trevor Sharpe, the Deadcuts are a band thinking outside the box and doing things their way rather than slavishly following whatever’s popular in the NME this week, and all power to them.
Dark Is The Night is a snapshot back to better times, when goth music genuinely was dark, disturbing and fascinating by equal turns, rather than the horrible laundry list complaining of emo. A fascinating 40 minute journey, but still accessible enough to grab you on first listen, this is one that you really should make the effort to check out. Welcome back guys, let's hope it's for the long haul.