Pin-Up Went Down are a new French duo…- let it start at the beginning.
The whole story started with a myspace friend request. Nowadays I’m getting tired of them due to the continuous indie bands’ request; wanting me to be their fan. And these guys just appeared from the unknown. Oh my god…another one *click*….. OH MY GOD!…so this is it. I was sceptic and became surprised like hell, that this is a great band. I asked them for a promo and they sent me one. Thank you!
-…a new French duo consisting Asphodel, the mistress of female activities and Alexis who is responsible for all the instruments can be heard in their music – guitar, bass, keys, electronics, etc. The project started less than one year ago as Carnival in Coal split up and former live drummer Alexis Damien launched this new project, called that time Esthete Piggie. Soon he was joined by Asphodel who can be known from Penubmra or Nowonmai.
So I was surprised even more when I saw that big Ascendance Records banner on their profile, I couldn’t believe in my eyes. Ascendance Recs. is a label with the aim of collecting the progressive, experimental or just talented acts having a female voice. It’s a rather new label but already made deals with bands like Stolen Babies and unexpecT. So the name may sound familiar to some of you. – Get to the band!
The name itself (which was created in the December 2007) evokes the era(s) of models who got into fashion and became covergirls posing in front of the camera. The words in the name can be considered as an oxymoron (up/down). And the second part of the name has the negative side, the final outcome is the fall of these beautiful creatures.
The cover is unusual for an experimental/AG metal band but I suppose I just got used to weird, mindfucking artwork. I would say this is “mirror-avantgarde” quoting Tentakel P.’s Sigh review. It already gives a bit of music, it truly has a gothic line and this cover would perfectly fit a gothic metal band’s album of high standard.
Seeing it we will notice the cold, metallic colours. The second thing one sees the vase with a sip of dirty water and the flower. Flower, really? No. It’s a piece of wire put in this glass vase…love is never easy.
In the background a left hand’s shadow can be observed trying to grab the heart which is created by mirroring the title’s 2 to the left side. Contrary to the dominating rigid colours, the title is full of life and power with its bloody red appearance.
And the music. So as it is written before, it surprised me. The first bit of this mass was a song I have listened on their myspace named Nearly Dead Bat Make up. Particularly, the vocals were the most interesting and outstanding. While listening to it I felt I am in a kind of wonderland. Asphodel is one of the most talented singers I have ever heard. She can sing rigidly, violently but on the other hand she has a definitive gothic background which teaches the girls to sing in a method can be recognized with ease (this style of singing can be heard near the end of the song). But. Yes…these buts. But she has a unique jazzy, though profile and another diverse which is something undefinable, smooth and soft disco styled one and not forget mentioning her childish one. And it’s just the tip of the iceberg. I can’t tell another girl who are able to sing in these ranges…and she combines it with continuous changing of the pitch. Alexis delivers aggressive guitars and drums along with male growled/shouted vocals. I would highlight one moment: under the bridge, Asphodel sings in her disco styled while Alexis growls in the backgrounds and the whole thing explodes as guitars and the shouted vocals come in to form the chorus.
Some lyrics have allusions to the various parts of (music) history. Nearly Dead Bat Make up also has a reference to the band Kiss and the people who believed them Satanists and Nazis. Another interesting part of this song is the very beginning, with the lyrics of “Be (-shuuMuut-) obscene, be-be aggressive“. It’s a reference to Marilyn Manson’s mOBSCENE which has almost the same female lines originally stolen from Faith No More’s Be Aggressive. (-shuuMuut-) = (shut up M arilyn M anson).
On the other hand, some of the lyrics may seem absurd like Pussy Worship which is built around the question girls ask themselves: What is it like being a man while having sex?. Only Some Shitty Chemical Stuff explains love only as a hormonal procession.
The lyrics aren’t about one theme and message, they call up for situations, characters and images. Due to this, the music always changes differently and evolves, it follows the lyrics. There isn’t a central style, except the rock and metal basics. Pussy Worship is like pussy pop-punk with a gospel-like inlay. Only Some Shitty Chemical Stuff is an electronical, industrial metal song and first reminded me of the grotesque attitude to love presented in vocals and atmosphere one may know from the music of Rammstein. However, it becomes an acoustical ballad later.
To sum up Pin-Up Went Down’s musical debut I must say I am extremely happy to know these two talented musicians with weird fantasies to turn them into reality. Their first album is surprisingly eclectic and delivered with overwhelming musical and vocal production, it’s one of the most promising first-time debut releases of all time of avantgarde music. Not joking.
01 – Intrusion
02 – Esthete Piggie
03 – Nearly Dead Bat Make Up
04 – Cadavre Exquis
05 – Pussy Worship
06 – Get Ready To Sweep
07 – Yo-Yo Yes Then No
08 – Only Some Shitty Chemical Stuff
09 – Human Beat Box Deluxe
10 – Feat.Me/Feat.Us
11 – Be My Idol Then My Fall
12 – Serie Z I
13 – Serie Z II