Sleep of Monsters - Produces Reason (Svart Records)

A cornucopia of gothic celebration. In black, of course...
Release Date: 
6 Nov 2014 - 11:30pm

It’s difficult to see how Finnish goth rock juggernaut Sleep of Monsters can fail. On the face of it, in Produces Reason they’ve come up with a record to appeal to goths of every stripe, from Chris Isaak fans all the way through to admirers of Billy Idol thanks in large to the sultry, smokin’ vocal smarts of Ike Vil.

Vil, you’ll remember, was the frontman for incendiary Finnish occultists Babylon Whores – a band still revered in the Metal as Fuck offices, let me tell you – but whilst that band were fabul;ous, Sleep of Monsters have the capacity to take that fabulosity to whole other levels. Starting with the Danzig-y Nihil Nihil Nihil, …Reason is the sort of album HIM might make if they could be bothered to step away from the mirror for a few minutes;  a seething, febrile mess of literary allusion and pop-art crepuscular teen appeal clothed in stentorian riffs and the curled lip snarl of Ike.

Songs such as Abomination Street, Murder She Wrote and storming album closer I Am the Night Color Me Black are all bona fide goth rock classics in waiting, near-perfect slabs of hysteria-inducing absinthe-soaked triumph, beckoning the listener into their world of sin and wasted elegance, encouraging us to let the darkness consume us in an orgiastic maelstrom of swirling synths, adamantine riffage and that devil-forsaken croon.

Murder She Wrote fuses the avant-garde blackened marionette guignol of Bauhaus to the ludicrous stadium rock pout of Mr William Broad in astoundingly seamless fashion; those two worlds should never cross, yet here they do and the result is breathtaking. When the band concentrates purely on (death) rocking out, as they do on the uber melodic Christsonday, the results are just as exciting.

I could go on, but there are only so many ways of saying ‘this is bloody brilliant and you need to get out and buy it quick smart’, and I seem to have selected the best one right there. Come, ye goths, ye grebos, ye rockers and ye ghouls – there’s much here for all of us to enjoy, treasure and revere. Marvellous!