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Crystal Castles - (III) - LP Vinyl

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Crystal Castles
12" Vinyl

Product Description

Crystal Castles seem to operate in a perpetual state of confrontation, conflict, and stress. That works in their favor as they face a new and strange set of challenges on their third album: Their brand of dark electro has proven so influential in recent years that it's put them in danger of sounding normal now. Their first two records were explosive, unpredictable, and found them living on borrowed time, trying to outlast the blog-house fad that spawned their earliest singles and outstrip a run of bad publicity caused by early copyright disputes and cancelled gigs. "The world is a dystopia where victims don't get justice and corruption prevails," Alice Glass recently vented. "I'm one step away from being a vigilante to protect people and bring justice to the people I love." Indeed, her lyrics on the fiercely aggressive (III) take on a newfound importance, often reading like the broken promises of an overworked guardian angel.

Though the duo claims to have overhauled their recording process for (III), trading in all of their gear and disallowing the use of computers in the studio, the album couldn't be mistaken for the work of anyone else. It retains Ethan Kath's trademark staggered synths and Glass' acute wail still pierces through thick reverb. The music now conveys a sense of unease somewhere between waiting for the drugs to kick in and wanting to leave the club as soon as possible. As promised, it is unyieldingly "bleak." Even the catchy songs are filtered through a forbidding darkness. "Pale Flesh" exhumes witch house for just long enough to beat it at its own game, "Sad Eyes" is pure rave throwback, and the call-and-response hooks that materialize as scrambled vocal transmissions ("Kerosene") and longing synth countermelodies ("Affection") come off like power-pop played by catatonic automatons.

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