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This review is from: Primary Colours (Audio CD)
Few people have ever been in doubt that the Horrors have cracking record collections, a collective eye for natty threads, as well as coercible hairdressers. It was a pity therefore that they seemed intent on strangling their musical endeavours with a selection of broken pedals and their own hype. They were black and white, style over substance.
That was then. Primary Colours now shifts their monochrome focus into a more vivid arena. Little has been cut however from Strange House, but plenty has been added. Notably, it's in with intelligible organ, Joy Division homages and My Bloody Valentine drone. Tellingly, it's out with schlock-shock screaming, faux-goth and stubborn resistance to include a tune. Primary Colours contorts from curiosity into contender really rather quickly.
As Strange House hinted at surf-punk, Primary Colours hints at spectral girl groups, distorted, of course on `Who Can Say'. `I Can't Control Myself' has persuaded Spiritualized's `Come Together' to guest on its own re-imagining. Elsewhere it's Bauhaus grooming a fledgling Cramps, the title track is Jesus & Mary Chain as fronted by the sombre ghost of Ian Curtis. 7-minute closer, `Sea Within A Sea', is a joyously optimistic show of synth, which, if a little light in itself, is a krautrock paean to triumph in adversity, a tacit statement of self-assured self, a told-you-so to the naysayers.
Its knockers will still cite originality as a major downfall, but there is an art to pastiche, an art in which the Horrors have become proficient. Their former incarnation as skinny clotheshorses has allowed them to evolve and run confident streaks across the record like a rainbow breaking out of a storm, spreading the primary colours of Loveless, Pyschocandy and In The Flat Field across their canvas. Pastiche with power, it's as easy as one-two-three: red, green, ... and as blue as White Lies.