Saturday, May 3, 2008

Sibling Lovers: An Enigma Wrapped in a Misery

In one of those meandering trips you can take when on MySpace, I somehow ended up (via a friend of a friend of a friend...) on the profile for the band, Sibling Lovers. As many MySpace bands do, Sibling Lovers cultivate a mysterious identity with very few details about them. What I do know is that they consist of James Masson (vox, piano, organ, guitar, celeste, mandolin, bass, strings) and L'wren (vox, drums, percussion); that they locate themselves in Paris, London, Melbourne, Stockholm, and Berlin; that they don't have a record label; that their next and only gig is in Istanbul; and that they make beautiful, moody, melancholy music. They remind me of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds meets darkwave, and their aesthetic seems to be nineteenth-century-gothic-film-noir.

All the songs featured on their profile are like inventive dirges with dramatic orchestral arrangements. The song Kleine Nazi, is a jet black ode to a female Nazi in jackboots, and Ghost, apparently featuring the vocals of Zoe West, an experimental artist from Australia, is also known as Desert Tree on West's profile and sounds like a female Nick Cave rasping over a mesmerizing mix of gothic and Western high noon showdown. The Crying Spider, which seems to be based on the Odlion Redon painting of the same name, sounds like it's being plucked on a slightly dissonant mandolin and features no vocals at all. Backwards and Lost is also purely instrumental with a timpani drumline and dreamy strings - it could be the soundtrack to a Tim Burton film. Their MySpace also features a cover of Stand By Me that transforms the original into a mournful ballad.

I would definitely like to find out more about Sibling Lovers and hear more songs, especially with the deep, Cavesque vocals from James. Then again, maybe the less I know about them, the more I can wrap my mind in their music and manufacture my own dreamscapes.

Sibling Lovers' MySpace:

Kleine Nazi - Sibling Lovers

Ghost/Desert Tree - Sibling Lovers and Zoe West

Stand By Me - Sibling Lovers