Another impressive addition to the Saint Marie Records roster, We Need Secrets hail from Nova Scotia, Canada and their first full-length release will delight many who like their shoegaze loud yet tuneful. Remarkably it’s the brainchild of one man, Chad Peck, with an assortment of guests.
No prizes for guessing who Peck is trying to emulate for opener ‘How You Remember’. The salvo of distorted guitars and immense percussion apes My Bloody Valentine’s ‘Loveless’ (but on a presumably significantly smaller budget) to the levels of pastiche. Yet the second track, ‘Months Like Years’ is noticeably more lo-fi with the outfit heading into more chaotic territory. By the time of third song, ‘I Would Take You Over Me’, Peck and co. begin to come into their own with some high quality riffage and his vocals begin to control the melodies as much as the instrumental sections. Indeed, Peck’s vocals are strong throughout and never get drowned out by the immense cacophony which surround them.
We Need Secrets don’t mess about with slow-building tension, the songs are delivered as concise pop nuggets with eleven songs dispensed in a “blink and you’ll miss it” thirty six minutes. ‘Melancholy’, conversely, is one of the poppier numbers and is joined by the similarly incisive ‘Interiors’ and ‘Pain Lines’. In its most impressive form, real invention is demonstrated for ‘Uncommitted Crimes’, the haunting, shape-shifting ‘Cycles’ and the brilliant Autolux-esque ‘Auster’ (where the singer urges the listener to “Destroy yourself tonight”).
‘Melancholy And The Archive’ may sail a little close to the wind in terms of comparisons to shoegazing greats. However, if you want fuzzy, busy yet immediate pop songs, these Canadians have done a grand job.
My Bloody Valentine, Autolux