I first happened upon this group in June of last year, when the lead singer Chris made a thread on a message board I was frequenting about his band. The samples on the main page were outstanding. They were melodic, tinged with something I thought was reminiscent of eighties New Wave, when it was still the dark brooding poetry of Robert Smith instead of Stacey Q's poppy vocals and danceable rhythms. However, it wasn't until November of last year that Untouched was finally put on sale - for community members only, if memory serves. When I finally received it and put it into my old stereo system, an unforgettable synth line started, a bit more glam-esque than I previously thought it would be, but not disappointing in the least. Then, the vocals began - and I was again reminded of New Wave, only a bit more... raw, I suppose, is the word I'm looking for. It was easy to dance to, while still keeping the poetry I had come to expect from lead vocalist Chrisstoffer Nightinglam after reading the site for months, by now. "Double Lips" has since become a staple in any mixed CDs I make for anyone, as it fits in with anyone's tastes beautifully and is quite hard to resist.
After "Double Lips", the CD launches into a slower piece, with a yearning synth line, with almost emo-esque lyrics, without the irritating whiny factor most Emo lyrics have, as in, "Could you hug a little harder? 'Cause the man in white he seems to got your hand away from me." Hauntingly beautiful, these lyrics stay with you long after the song has stopped. A mood of longing and a sense of loss is hard to ignore, and Dreadful Dollface chose to follow this song with the just as impressive (and depressing) song, "Honesty". The vocals in this are astounding. They are very reminiscent of Joy Division (whom I absolutely adore, so it's a compliment to the highest degree for me) and the instruments are ethereal and beautiful, while still being exceedingly depressing. This creates the same vague lack of hope and happiness the previous song did, with the repeated lyrics "That's when one dies" at the end, enforcing the feeling of desperation and making your thoughts sink lower and lower each time he speaks.
Lo and behold, "Venus in Feathers," the next song, returns to the danceable, slightly more positive side of Dreadful Dollface. This, if anything, is their most glam piece, and would've been quite the hit in the heyday of Ziggy Stardust and T- Rex. It's one of those songs that works its way into your subconscious, repeating and repeating without you noticing until you find yourself tapping out the rhythm on a desk at school, or humming it in the shower. With the last song on what I consider to be the best EP I've heard in years, Dreadful Dollface exchanges the more synth-oriented side of themselves for a delicate piano piece, changing the focus to Chris's voice and lyrics, featuring rather lovely backup female vocals by Andy, who has since left the band. The lyrics speak of love, elegant and exquisite, in a pure form we all wish for at one time or another, and how it must end.
The only complaint I might have is the production/sound quality is a bit low, but hey- it was made by an unsigned band on a limited budget, so I can cut them a bit of slack on that level. The EP is five songs long, at three Euros for two of them, and is limited edition since Andy made the decision to leave the band. Untouched is a CD that I can assure you will never sit on a shelf and collect dust, and this is a band you will watch quickly ascend the stair to stardom.
8.5 / 10
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