Review Summary: The match that lit the torch before it burned out
Exploiting their own sounds and adopting The Smith’s song of the same name, Pretty Girls Make Graves was one of the few concealed bands who created an outcome of impressive importance. The New Romance was unexpected and astonishing, simply put as a post-punk masterpiece. Using wave after wave of sonic guitar bursts to mold and polish their artistic rhythms; the band left a mark on the underground music scene and still maintains a large following despite the fact that the band has been broken since 2007.
For all the luminosity and creativity shown, it's all so strange that this band contains the same annoyances of your garage band next door. But when direct in the face, this album is a musical treasure chest of wasted vocals, a mixture of floating and stabbing guitars and a punk paste to impossibly glue them all together. It doesn't make sense, but it is a creative masterpiece. They utilize electronica in the cracks as a sealant and present a solid surface all across the entire album. It doesn't bore and it sure doesn't depress or regress in any manner.
The composition and variance is so diverse, it’s almost as if the band had created their own musical dimension. As with the “nothing to lose” feeling behind the song Blue Lights, each track has its own side to show on the album. The guitars are flashy, the organs are orgasmic and the arrangements of heavy punk and odd drum patterns push others off the stage and into the stand. Its simple math, your ears will follow along and take the enjoyment for what it is, or be flamed in a confusion of guilty pleasures. The acoustic beauty is deep enough to hear the very plucking of the strings, and while some an already imagine some bad ideas of what it may sound like; it isn’t a bad thing at all for this case. For all to see, the variance is unique and the songs are fresh enough to be compared to the Beatles themselves. Don’t criticize, it’s not a stretch, the music utilizes a wide array of instruments in ways that give the band their own complete and whole sound, along with melodies that can fit into any activity or mood.
The band is practically as hyperactive as their creation of the songs Chemical, Chemical and The Teeth Collector. Both are catchy, creative and flowing rivers of impressive power and musical invention. As fluttering as it is piercing, the band creates an intense movement all throughout the album. The odd combination of female lead vocals and the teething guitars along with the strangeness and uncertainty of the musical direction, it is undeniably intriguing. The album contains enough groovy organs to unfeasibly hook a metal fan into the cult fanbase, and even prog-heads can salivate at the odd and artistic breakdowns in-between each beat of every song. With repeated listens it only proves that The New Romance is a devoted accomplishment.
It’s a pulse racing and blood driven album that stands apart from the punk and rock worlds. Erotic and encasing to the corner of the back of the album, The New Romance is an album that screams recognition through each pore of intensity. Especially with the closing track, “A Certain Cemetary” merges heartbreaking clamor with anathematic power, and the female vocalist commands it all among the mood of clashing cymbals thrashing bass. Even among the uneven guitars, the song is the innocent drug that finishes The New Romance with a depressing sentiment that is as unexpected as the anthem lullaby that it holds within.