‘Truth’ is a welcome return for Dead Leaf Echo. After enlisting one of the main exponents of the “nu gaze” movement in Ulrich Schnauss for their last release, their new album has been mixed by John Fryer, a key producer for many acts on the 4AD label. This is a sure sign that this New York trio are considered the real deal.
‘Half Truth’ begins with military-style drums, jangly effects and LG’s dispassionate vocals. As a opening track, it’s a little effete but the same cannot be said for ‘Dance In The Light’, where the layers of instruments gather a strong and hypnotic momentum.
One of the keys to the brilliant ‘Act Of Truth’ are Liza Baker’s backing vocals (or rather sighs) as she flits in and out of the swirling backdrops of carefully-crafted noise. Elsewhere, the gloomily attractive ‘Woolgathering’ brushes shoulders with the considerably more dynamic ‘Trial’; both fine tracks in their own way.
‘Truth’ may be dismissed by some as shoegaze revival music (and significant parts of it do recall early 1990’s favourites The Pale Saints and Lush) but it’s built around solid hooks and strong rhythms that ensure the songs don’t get washed away. After the slightly patchy ‘Pale Fire’, this is a much more convincing statement from Dead Leaf Echo and one which is consistently atmospheric and doomy.
Pale Saints, Lush