Rev Rev Rev - Des Fleurs Magiques Bourdonnaient

by Steve Reynolds Rating:9 Release Date:2016-02-21

Who’d have thought there would be a band from Italy deeply influenced by the first wave of Shoegaze that would have something relevant to put to our lugholes, eh? Well, I think I may have just found them. They are called Rev Rev Rev, a quartet from Modena.

Immersing themselves in shimmering bright guitars, a plethora of delay and reverb, and the trademark ethereal vocal, which was the staple of the said genre, this has the sounds of 1989–1992 stamped all over. They take the arrangement of the marvellous Slowdive, mix it with the wooze of My Bloody Valentine and join it together with the vocal mystique of Hope Sandoval.

There is an immediate rush of nostalgia when I put this album on for the first time. When the crystalline ‘Buzzing Flowers Ecstasy’ opens the album it’s awash with feedback, drone and a heaviness that is more encapsulating than punishing.  It’s a definite throwback to the scene that celebrates itself that although is derivative remains urgent and attention grabbing at the same time.

‘Nightwine’ is full of similar importance, although it’s less belligerent in its approach but Laura Lacuzio’s first vocal introduction is both eerie and funereal all set to an air of doom and gloom.  ‘Travelling westbound’ swirls and carves around Lacuzio’s delivery and Sebastian Lugli’s sonic attacks wave a wand of magical destruction.

A buzzsaw like guitar attack take us down a dark but well trodden path of noise, psych and layered up viscosity on ‘Caffe’ and when ‘Je Est Un Autre’ takes to the stage the omnipotent dark hyper bowl of power becomes unprecedented and seething.  The drone takes centre stage on ‘A Ring Without An End’, a seamless tide of bluster, menace and crunching noise rises and rises leaving a feeling of harrowing asphyxiation. 

The guitar interplay and the band’s singular bloody minded approach to perfection reaches its zenith on the stonking ‘Plymouth Morning’.  A wall of sound, not dissimilar to Sonic Youth era ‘Washing Machine’ and anything done by atonal noiseniks A Place To Bury Strangers leaves you gob smacked and open mouthed such is its inability to relent or be suppressed.

There is a distinct Goth feel in places as well, one that The Cocteau Twins would be proud of on the slowcore of ‘Just a Spot’ and album closer ‘Aloft’.  Both polar opposite musically but both indebted to Liz Frazer and Robin Guthrie’s recordings.

Musically this has been done, it doesn’t reinvent the wheel but instead of being mere copycats Rev Rev Rev have created their own brave new world and put out an album that is catchy, creative and brilliantly moving.

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