What we have here is the first EP by local electro-pop outfit Lust, put out on their own label Crush Records. The five tracks on the record mine the depths of ‘80s pop and New Wave. Immediate comparisons that spring to mind are The Human League, or Linear Movement. Opener “Destiny” begins with a long, drug-wash haze of synth. The band eventually finds a beat and moves along into the more danceable “Twenty One.” I’m compelled to tap my foot in approval for the cold, detached voices of Tyler Mounteney and Zoe Garred on “Heartbeat.” There is talk of black arrows piercing hearts, and much sand slipping through one’s fingers. Yes! Rhythmic pulse music filled with dejection and heartbreak. I can see thousands of ill-fated youth taking drugs and breaking each other’s hearts to this one on soiled discotheque dance floors. Afterwards, we are carried—presumably drunk and heartbroken—through two more instrumental pieces. “Frustration” is a fairly fast-paced number with some spacey sounding drum noises, while on the record’s closer, “Tunnel Vision,” a guitar bleats and wails beneath a throbbing rhythm of breaking glass. Is it the sound of forbidden night-club sex or the sound of pure regret in a cold and sober morning?
At best, this sort of thing is pure bliss, as groups like 2VM or Vancouver’s own Terror Bird have proved in the past. At worst, it comes out sounding like car commercial Muzak; a pale rehash of an already anachronistic style. With so many people attempting to re-live synth music’s glory days, much effort should be made to produce something that truly stands apart from the hangers on. Heartbeat falls somewhere in the middle of all this. The music alone falls flat on my youthful ears, which yearn for soft voices and more tales of promiscuity and heartbreak. I would, however, be very interested to hear what Lust produce in days to come.