[sic] Magazine

First Glances – Little Death Machine

The French have a rather romantic way of describing an orgasm: Le petit mort. If the South London trio Little Death Machine chose their band name as a means to liken their music to an orgasm then rightly so. Their new single Pale is sensual as much as it is dark – the perfect ingredients for a musical climax.

The first sixty seconds of Pale reel us in with haunting vocals and a preparatory undertone; we can’t yet relax into it. We sense that Little Death Machine is playing with us, mocking us with calm, dream-like vocals, urging us to just close our eyes and sway along. We do so, cautiously, afraid to let our body give in to hypnotic rhythms and the piano’s gentle encouragements. The refrain sets out to shock the system; seconds ago we were still eager to succumb to these strangely soothing sounds, now we are being ripped out of the realms of experimental trip-hop a la Massive Attack and into a nightmarish world ruled by ghoulish guitar play. And yet, the song does not unsettle, nor does it attempt to build up to a false crescendo – it follows it very own rhythm.

Eerie and charged with an indescribable energy, Pale is the kind of tune you will want to reserve for early morning wind-downs under a full-moon.

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