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“Darker Ages”, LOVELORN DOLLS’ 3rd album is above all a true catharsis for the band members. A purgation of the darkest emotions and tormented moments they went through the last months, daring expressing them through the sombre events of our everyday life (the rise of religious extremism, terror attacks, the ageing society, wars, betrayals, etc.) in a courageous struggle and continuous quest for a spiritual renewal… And it’s not every band who goes this far to even thank their antidepressants in the album credits!
Noir and poignant at first encounter, this new album is indeed haunted by malevolent ghosts and is by far the darkest work of the band ever, sounding a bit like a revolted THE GATHERING having a jamming session with THE CURE in their most depressive “Pornography” period… The tone is sombre, the guitar strings are sinister, the synths are lamenting and the beats are slow and heavy. And although we immediately recognize their typical “LOVELORN” type of sound made of heavy guitar riffs, loud catchy melodies, up-paced synth sequences and Ladyhell’s characteristic chameleon female vocals, the overall atmosphere is dense almost claustrophobic with the highly expressive female voice adding a dramatic touch to it by mixing depressive screams, spoken words and catchy but also oppressive choruses.
Fans of classic gothic rock will undoubtedly adore this album which is definitely revisiting the band’s deepest artistic melancholic wave rock roots, while industrial metal lovers will also find their way through the harder and more upbeat songs like the previous single “Lament”, the engaged “Psalms” or yet the dark pearl “Love Missile”.
Engineered once again by Maxx of HELALYN FLOWERS fame, “Darker Ages” is maybe not LOVELORN DOLLS’ most accessible release to date, but it’s by far the most mature and introspective creative effort to date from this Belgian duo. And the last 2 songs of the album intelligently bring us on more positive vibes full of hopes and strength through a radical come-back to nature, opening us the doors to a new world full of innocence and purity nicely characterized by the beautiful contribution of a multi-cultural children choir offering the perfect ending to this chef d’oeuvre.
LOVELORN DOLLS is dark and so we are…
The album also comes out as a limited edition with a 12-track bonus disc starting with a very personal cover of NINE INCH NAILS‘ “Hurt” plus various remixes of album songs giving them a more open and overall electronic twist, now more club-oriented, then more 80’s synth-pop tainted, sometimes a bit more modern experimental trip-pop-ish. This includes great collaborations with HELALYN FLOWERS, SIN.SIN, RESTRICTION 9, Kai Otte (MARI CHROME) and many more…