When I first listened to Mirror Mirror the debut record from Portland based dark wave band The Secret Light I thought to myself “why aren’t more bands doing this nowadays?” By this I mean embracing the dark sounds of ‘80s synth-pop mixed with slightly gothic elements and a bit of the star-studded glam antics that artists from Bowie to Robert Smith and Depeche Mode did.
The conclusion that I came to however was a stone cold one that I guess I had never thought of before because I was so lost in the power of the music. That reason being is that as gaudy and strange as the sounds and costumes which act as the face of this genre are, making this style of music, and making sound as good as The Secret Light does on this record is actually very difficult.
From front to back Mirror Mirror is a classic mirroring of albums by such classic ‘80s synth-pop acts as Depeche Mode and the Cure. The synths and deep cavernous drums hit perfectly beginning with the dark opening track “Circuits Collide” whose bass lines, which in this case make a world of difference in cultivating this sound, are reminiscent of the Joy Division and New Order master craftsman Peter Hook.
Next comes the unmistakably catchy future synth-pop sounding “Clockwork” which sounds like it could have just been dug out of a time capsule that was buried thirty years ago as could the title track “Mirror Mirror” which to me sounds more like Depeche Mode than Depeche Mode does. Yes it’s just that damn good.
Yet it’s not all a gothic fright fest on Mirror Mirror as is proved on the more upbeat brighter synths and more danceable beats of “Endless Loop” though if you were hoping for any sort of uplifting lyricism from singer Viktor Nova, you’re not going to get it.
Anyone looking for a fresh yet authentic take on ‘80s electronica and synth pop that isn’t in the form of a reunion show or the dusting off of an old genre given a new spin then Mirror Mirror is that album. It’s been a long wait but The Secret Light make it well worth it.
We are dedicated to informing the public about the different types of independent music that is available for your listening pleasure as well as giving the artist a professional critique from a seasoned music geek. We critique a wide variety of niche genres like experimental, IDM, electronic, ambient, shoegaze and much more.
Are you one of our faithful visitors who enjoys our website? Like us on Facebook