The highly acclaimed new album of the Horrors is finally out since last week. It took me a few days to get into it to be honest. Although a lot of critics seems to find their first album too childish, Strange House was one of my favorites album of 2007. I just loved that kind of psychobilly/Cramps/Hammond organs revival. I also saw them live while they were touring for their first album and they gave me a huge impression. They were full of energy and their tracks were perfect for live use.
But now this second album is miles ahead from Strange House. The Horrors can not be criticized to be childish anymore, you can simply see this by looking at press pictures. They are still dressed in black but not with fancy emo/goth haircuts and clothes anymore. This could be just a detail but imo it represents their state of mind for creating this album.
While listening to this new album: Primary Colours i keep on having the feeling that the ghost of Ian Curtis (Joy Division) haunts the singer. And maybe not only the singer, but the whole atmosphere makes me think of Joy Division or even Warsaw, playing under the directing of the producer Geoff Barrow. Geoff, not only mastermind of Portishead instilled a darker and colder breath to the Horrors music. I know that saying that this is the album of maturity for an artist is often misused, but we can say that here. Indeed while the first album was a bomb packed of garage, psychobilly energetic tracks, Primary Colours joins the dark side of post-psychedelic punk. Don’t get me wrong the energy is still there but used differently, mostly with sobriety that sometimes explodes in a reverb guitar solo from another dimension.
So imagine a mixture of Joy Division, Portishead, Zombie Zombie and the Emperor Machine and you get this masterpiece: Primary Colours.