Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Album review: Neils Children - Dimly Lit

What a difference a decade makes. Ten years ago Neils Children were a raging ball of angular, gnarling proto-punk that took aim at superficiality and rampant consumerism. Even today, their debut EP Change/Return/Success remains an astonishingly ferocious collection of anti-societal matter. Yet fast forward to 2013 and that edge is gone. Long gone.

Album number three, Dimly Lit, represents a disappointing calming of the soul for the London ensemble; a sad realisation that youth has passed and ageing is inevitable. The strangulating guitars have vanished, replaced by woozy, carousel dreamscapes like “Never Could be Any Other Way”; while seething hostility has been superseded by humdrum 60s psychedelia like “Trust You” and the lamentable “Warm Wave”.

We've seen this all before, of course. But the Horrors’ accession into shoegaze was always a natural next step. Sadly, Neils Children are much less durable. Their day and decade appears to be done.

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