Artist: Mode Moderne
Title: Strange Bruises
Record Label: Light Organ Records
We are sure a number of you have been there, that infamous night out, you hit the town, sink a few jars, dance the night away and then mysteriously you wake up at home the next morning with a mouth as dry as Ghandi’s flip flop and the mother of all headaches. But that’s not all, there are the war wounds of an epic night out or to name check the new EP by Mode Moderne, you have Strange Bruises. No matter who you are, everyone has woken up with a random bruise as a reminder of a lost night.
If this is a familiar notion, the sonic delivery of Mode Moderne’s latest output will ring a bell too, as the trio draw a strong influence from The Smiths, Joy Division and The Cure. These three acts have been the bands to name check for sometime, Mode Moderne join Editors and White Lies as the next group to photocopy the past and apply it to the future. Across the EPs seven tracks the band sound like they are paying a tribute to their idols rather than forging their own identity. Mode Moderne’s gloomy goth pop has a certain charm but the unshakeable likeness to the aforesaid acts is too hard to get passed. During the several spins of Strange Bruises the overwhelming feeling to turn it off and listen to Unknown Pleasures was a far more attractive prospect.
There are a few moments on the record where the Vancouver three piece do the Joy Division thing well, ‘Electrocute’ hurries along with a propulsive appeal with its long slung bass rumbles and rapidly thrashed drums while Phillip Intile does his best Ian Curtis croon. Equally ‘Guns’ follows suit with some chiming guitars added to the fray.
There is no shame in having influences, everyone has their icons who they cherish however, there is taking those touch points and creating something new or there is a carbon copy pastiche, sadly Mode Moderne are the latter. While their aural mixture is indebted to the past they do very little to leave their own stamp on Strange Bruises.
Words and Thoughts of Adam Williams