Dance and Cry
Copenhagen-based duo Darkness Falls follow up their acclaimed 2011 debut LP Alive in Us (HFN 009CD/LP), their 2011 self-titled EP (HFN 006EP) (which included "Hey!" the most played song on Danish radio in 2011), and a string of exquisite live performances with Dance and Cry, an album of atmospheric pop noir. Defying convention, Josephine Philip and Ina Lindgreen effortlessly blend a host of rock and pop influences, the textures and structures of electronic dance music, and the haunting atmospheres of art-house cinema soundtracks to produce an album of deep longing and icy cool -- all drawn together by impeccable vocals that embody a decidedly glamorous melancholy. It's an album that will tick all the boxes for a diverse range of listeners; as they themselves put it: "In our music, there is something for the mind, something for the heart and something for the feet too." The dramatic opener sets the tone, a torch-song that seductively entices the listener to "come out and join me for night games" over layers of sustained synths. A slow house kick drum adds momentum, as one carefully curated sound after another enriches the musical palette until it builds to a heart-stirring climax. The haunting "The Answer" -- a tale of love, desire and loss -- maintains the quality, as a Cure-like guitar motif circles over a beautifully textured beat of found sounds. Lush and yearning, it's instantly unforgettable. From this point on, it's clear that picking favorites will be a thankless task: this is an album of consistent brilliance. A dizzying whirlpool, Dance and Cry draws on a dazzling array of influences. The Jesus and Mary Chain, Cocteau Twins, Kate Bush, Nite Jewel, bedroom pop, widescreen expanses, basement rock, church choir ethereality -- each listener will bring personal touchstones and inspirations to mind. "Darkness falls" was traditionally a phrase used in old plays, shorthand for indicating the ending of a scene; the moment when the drama is given over to the audience, to hold, to contemplate, to languorously enjoy. Dance and Cry couldn't be more fitting in these terms: an album of great richness in which you'll want to immerse yourself. Produced by Darkness Falls, Adrian Aurelius (The Raveonettes), and Lasse Martinussen (Rosemary), except for "Hazy," which was produced with Anders Rhedin (Dinner, Choir of Young Believers). Artwork by multi-award-winning Danish photographer and artist Peter Funch.