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Electric Turn To Me - Clouds Move So Fast

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Artist: Electric Turn To Me

Album: Clouds Move So Fast

Label: No Quarter

Review date: Mar. 8, 2004


New York's Electric Turn To Me offer their second EP here, with five short songs reminiscent of the early 80s. Vocalist Silke reminds me at times of Lene Lovich, Hazel O'Connor, even Nina Hagen, while the band's web site references Siouxsie Sioux. The music itself brings to mind early Ultravox, Stranglers, and the whole time when punk was turning into New Wave.

The EP has a murky production that avoids the excessive sheen of New Wave, but also seems to dim the band's energy. Still, drummer Blake Fleming (Laddio Bolocko, Mars Volta) propels things nicely, with fellow ex-Laddio Bolocko member Marcus DeGrazia's keyboards adding the Stranglers feel. Guitarist James Wilk throws out shards of edgy distortion, and German ex-pat Silke wails and calls out over it all.

Clouds Move So Fast includes a range of material, from the energetic rock of "Pick Up the Trail" to the slower Berlin-style, melancholy pop of "Cornelius." Silke's vocals get a bit histrionic on "20 Eyes in the Car," while "Wrestle With Me Angel" puts the vocals through a tremolo so they sound like they're coming through water. "One Second" finishes things off with a slow, loungy, elegy.

ETTM have succeeded in taking some clear influences and blending them into their own sound, which is an achievement of note. They don't sound much like anyone else these days, while at the same time they reference comfortable points in the past. Not bad.

By Mason Jones

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