Soap and Skin
Sugarbread


4.5
superb

Review

by KrazyKris USER (12 Reviews)
June 4th, 2015 | 16 replies


Release Date: 2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Soap&Skin acts as a tour guide for some place called darkness once again.

Desperate cries in the dark, a woman is screaming and struggling to get out of this…this terrible mess. You can't really understand her words anymore, but you're pretty sure it's not English. A German would later tell you that she actually screams

"Ich fühl mich nicht mehr!" and "Hilfe, das ist er!"

and he’d thankfully translate it to

"I can’t feel myself anymore!" and "Help, it’s him!"

And suddenly you recognise that the whole time there was this hammering, echoing beat and some sinister synths overshadowing the whole scene, striking through the silence, hitting you as hard as possible.

That's the story of Sugarbread's very first seconds. Yes, the title track to this EP starts out as a haunting experience in what could be called some sort of musical terror. It's depressing, disturbing, dark. Soap&Skin's absolute trademark after not even a decade in the business. Unsurprisingly the song is a triumph in every way, taking you to a dark place from the very beginning, just to grow into a transcendant performance led by a pulsating bass drum and the most unrythmic electronic melody. Her singing is precise, strong and yet calm, seems peaceful and yet as commanding as if she could crush you every second. The background choir only adds to the epic feeling of those three and a half minutes. It's a masterpiece, a quite simple one structurally, but all the more complicated in its mysterious depth.

But there's more. To compliment this song, Anja Plaschg presents her rather playful version of classic track Me And The Devil. Driven by its distinctive string section and the gentle plucking in the background, the morbid lyrics fit her well and make for an atmosphere somewhere between a requiem and just some good old black humour. It doesn't reach the heights of the opening title track, but with the calm horn in the second half and Plaschg’s vocals that have become more and more practised over the years, it is time very well spent.

It's the third and last song that weighs the EP down a bit. Pray seems too calm, too defensive for the longest, almost feels like an outtake. Which is disappointing, since Plaschg showcased one quality more than enough by now: Her perfectionism. Not everything she delivered over the years was perfect, of course, but one could hear in every note that it was thought through. Pray doesn't really get there and still it is a sweet song, returning back on the path of pure goodness with its damn great piano & horn outro.

So, what more to say? Oh, yeah: If you want great music, this is the way to go. That, of course, isn't too much of a surprise, looking at Plaschg's earlier work. She experiments a little this time, but still maintains her primary features and serves yet another truly perfect track. Mission accomplished!



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user ratings (32)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
KrazyKris
June 4th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

New review, different approach. Hope you guys like the "intro".



Video for the t/t is damn brilliant too, just cut perfectly:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xUFjl8LzmY

PappyMason
June 4th 2015


3012 Comments


Sweet little write-up!
I've never heard any of her stuff tho, sounds interesting.

Digging: Andy Stott - Merciless

KrazyKris
June 4th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks!

She's my fav artist, so I strongly recommend listening to some of her songs. Most of what she's done up to now is either neo-classical and piano-driven or some electronic experimentation, which is often as aggressive as the t/t here, at times with a little industrial feel to it.



Just two songs that really show both sides, if you wanna know what she's all about:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJac-TSA2I4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tc3QS6Ucrnw

zakalwe
June 4th 2015


11483 Comments


Jesus.......are you......are you...Josef Fritzl???!

KrazyKris
June 4th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I thought we already established that I'm the reincarnation of the guy that started WWII. I mean, I'm Austrian.

zakalwe
June 4th 2015


11483 Comments


This is great stuff dude. The review that is Christ knows what the albums like. I'll give it a go.

KrazyKris
June 4th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks man. And I'd say have fun with it, but that's probably not what the songs should trigger

BallsToTheWall
June 4th 2015


45341 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Really good stuff. With this was a full-length.

Digging: Firewater - Get Off the Cross, We Need the Wood for the Fire

zakalwe
June 5th 2015


11483 Comments


"Ich fühl mich nicht mehr!" Indeed.
This is very interesting, Fever Ray stripped of the electronics and left alone in a torture chamber. Me and the Devil is great.

Phlegm
June 5th 2015


7129 Comments


ah i remember this

Digging: Future - DS2

Phlegm
June 5th 2015


7129 Comments


love the cover art, it's very Ashlee

TWIGtheWONDERKID
June 5th 2015


1246 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

New Soap&Skin--nice--need to give this a listen.

Digging: EEK - Kahraba

TWIGtheWONDERKID
June 5th 2015


1246 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

oh, old Soap&Skin, still need to check it out.

KrazyKris
June 5th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, zak, she always reminds me of Nico on that track because of its mood and the heavy accent.



@twig

I think there's a new LP coming this year. At least there's a new single, a cover song called Mawal Jamar.

Lethean
June 5th 2015


1432 Comments


sugarbread is prob her best song yet

hopefully she's even more ambitious with her new material

KrazyKris
June 5th 2015


2348 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Don't know. Cynthia, Voyage Voyage, Marche Funebre, Thanatos... there are a lot stellar tracks to choose from



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