Album #324: Clan of Xymox – Spider on the Wall

  • Released: 2020
  • Origin: Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Label: Trisol
  • Best Track:

I’ve never listened to Clan of Xymox before but I suspect I like them. Back in July, the Dutch gothic/new wave outfit released their 16th album in a discography dating back to 1985.

And Spider on the Wall is definitely up my street – the dark and mesmeric synth, the gloomy vocals and the simple, industrial-style drumming. It has, however, had a bit of a “shrinker” (as opposed to a “grower”) effect on me. I loved it on first listen, but on second and third I started to find it a bit pedestrian in parts, not helped by some poor-ish lyrics, although I suppose English isn’t their first language in their defence.

Nonetheless, there are good tracks and I don’t want to be too harsh. I think maybe I just overrated on my first listen and now I’m trying overcompensate. ‘All I Ever Know’, while it may borrow a little from New Order’s ‘Blue Monday’, is a banger, and ‘Black Mirror, whether an homage to Charlie Brooker’s dystopia series or not, is a powerfully bleak piece.

I sense this album may not have been the best introduction to Clan of Xymox, but I’ll still be adding the band to my infinite “must hear more from” list.

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