Album review: Evokateur, ‘Crows’ Wedding’ (2012)

This is a review for the New Reviews, also available here.

It’s right to be a little doubtful about a band who describe themselves thus: “Evokateur exists in a dark world of ashes but rises with a brave and beautiful proposal, like a mechanoid orchid, a flower living in a post apocalyptic era.” Hopes are not held high. Such self-hyperbolic detritus usually deserves the most aggressive of reviewer punishments. Moreover, lofty PR spiel is so often grossly pernicious to the DIY musician. And yet, Crows’ Wedding is an adept piece of work which deftly splices crunchy synths and the softest of vocal melodies.

As a four-track EP, this is perfectly weighted. ‘Same As You’ is perambulating pop, gently, sweetly unraveling, with Sarah Villaraus’s smoothly hewn vocals. The haunting sweep of ‘Misery’, like an odour, is beautifully rendered. Here, Hector Villaraus shrewdly grounds his synth work in a dusty walk. His static fuzzes and clicks underpin the sliding, striding warmth of the vocal melody. And it’s menacing, too. “You are tied to the bed, I can keep you fed,” Villaraus sings.

The undoubted highlight is ‘Wildflowers’. Its vocal hook is majesty, holding hands with potent, poking keys. At its most soulful, it is here the EP most heartily fills its boots. There is a turn towards the darkly melodic. ‘Undone’, the final track, is the epitome of this. Industrial, like an 80s Trent Reznor, the record leaves with a drop, a dipping fade out like the knell of a storm. This is clinical, intelligent and terrific.

Evokateur’s Crows’ Wedding is out now.