Single Review – The Horrors – Machine

The Horrors are hard to define. The Essex quintet rooted their sound in Shoegaze Psychedelia and Pop from their 2011 album Skying and their fourth album Luminous from 2014. Their fourth album was the first to not feature a major shift in sound. It was a refinement with several tweaks and changes, but for a group that has taken in several genres in just four albums, it seemed like a half sideways step albeit an excellently delivered one. That did beg the question whether The Horrors had settled down in their third guise and whether their fifth would be another vaguely similar effort. Their new single ‘Machine’ however, may see them forge the fourth chapter in their sound. The churning and grinding opening of their latest single instantly tells you where their sound has landed and the Josh Hayward’s razor sharp, distorted chords hammer the message home; The Horrors have gone industrial. It is the darkest and grittiest they have been since the Gothic Punk of their debut though with their new Industrial sound, this is measured and flickered back to you. Shades of post Pop Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails are natural, but with the psychedelic style of production (Paul Epworth has been brought in to produce this album) and the warbling haze of Faris Badwan’s vocals give this sound a distinct feel. It also allows the likes of Joshua Hayward a greater licsense to make guitars a greater part of their sound again. An exciting sound for 2017.

Owen Riddle

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