The world of pop music, be it rock, dance, electro or indie etc based pop, has forever been steeped in shades of light and dark and it is no different now. Though we imagine you’d be hard pressed to find many band genesis stories that occurred anywhere darker than that of Manchester quintet, LVLS (pronounced Loveless) who, they tell us, met at a funeral. Though of course, funerals are also celebrations of a life led and happy memories, so there is that light within the dark again.
Their music is the same, with slivers of illumination breaking through the canopy of rock based shadow. Influenced by the dark tinged drama of the likes of The Cure and Depeche Mode, there are touches of more recent acts within their latest EP, Teenager.
At just three tracks and eight minutes, it is whippet quick yet still has time for a midpoint cool down. Bookended by the vibrant and frenetic “Echoes” and “Young and Cruel”, second track “Suzie Shoes” offers some respite in the form of a calm and misty walk through winding backstreets. Almost a cappella, it floats gently along, unhurried and a contrast to its siblings.
“Echoes” and “Young and Cruel” are more traditionally rock-pop with “Echoes” in particular feeling quite full on. Like White Lies with MGMT finessing played out over a Tears for Fears style sing-along, it is a pulsating three minutes of brash energy and perpetual motion that leaves you feeling uplifted and exhausted. Thank goodness then for that moment of stillness provided by “Suzie Shoes”.
“Young and Cruel” sits between its two predecessors as far as velocity is concerned and is possibly the catchiest of them all, packed as it is with head-nod-inducing riffology, ker-splashing rock rhythms and a cracking little do-do-dodo-do backing vocal behind the chorus.
It, like the EP as a whole, is nostalgic and forward thinking at the same time, perfect for January as we look back on the year gone but also look forward to what is ahead of us. After a solid 2013 and now this quality new EP, there should be success ahead for LVLS.
The ‘Teenager’ EP is out now and available from the LVLS Bandcamp page.
28.01.14 Thirsty Scholar, MANCHESTER (Acoustic show)
30.01.14 The Ruby Lounge, MANCHESTER (Communion)
11.02.14 Tiger Lounge, MANCHESTER (Acoustic show)
18.03.14 The Castle, MANCHESTER
20.03.14 The Miller, LONDON