Keith Canisius is a lesser known musician who managed to be born in the USA and move himself out to Denmark. This album is not his first for certain. In the time between albums he has made a mark on the growing dream-pop and shoegaze scenes. The man has clearly been able to create a fan base using a backing band for his shows. All of these things are of little importance to the album as a whole. The fans you build on the road need an album to show them what you're up to.
This album does well more than just show what Keith has been up to since his last album or tour date. This album shows a musician with a real reverence towards his influences. While, not being merely a second generation Slowdive or My Bloody Valentine, the songs use these obvious influences to feed his other tastes. From the shimmering electronics guiding the opening track "Peoples Faces" to the stomping drums of the next song, each song gets what it needs and nothing less. While the electronics are obvious and at times carry a certain european bent, they act to drive the songs ahead and make them stand out. There are two things that truly stand out about any above average dream-pop or shoegaze records and that is the guitar and vocals. The guitars range from poppy clean strumming to effects drenched washes. Neither of these techniques take precedence as each song gets it's own touch. Meanwhile the vocals carry a melodic, lilting quality that gives the song a dream like feel. The real trick is that when the vocals are overdubbed to create a chorus. Sometimes this works when it is not abused, on the other hand there are songs like "Inner Blue, Outer Red". While this song is quite beautiful once it gets to it's post climax break the main part of this song is a collage of voices layered over each other. Even though this effect can create a dreamlike effect it does not in this case. Instead it creates a rather meandering unsettling effect for the listener.
The Production overall is impeccable. Everything is extremely clear with nothing left to chance the listener is allowed to be fully engaged in the record. This is something that allows for everything to be felt and rather than giving a single or a simple track for the listener to cling to it creates a sound scape. Save for a few missteps this is one of the standout records in this current wave of bands in this genre. The album gives one something to look for in the future as it hints at further experimentation with even stronger results.
7.8 / 10
I’ve known of Spanish Love Songs for a few years and I’ve liked what I heard in passing without diving in. When I saw them at Fest 18 last year ...
Imagine that your favorite modern hardcore band hopped into Doc Brown’s DeLorean and ended up in 1982. Upon arriving, they decided to start over and carry their same ferocious messages ...
Looking for the SPB logo? You can download it in a range of styles and colours here:
Click anywhere outside this dialog to close it, or press escape.