EP REVIEW - Violent Dreams - Serotonin - Post image - (300x300)ARTIST: Violent Dreams

RELEASE: Serotonin 

RELEASE DATE: 17th March 2019


Hailing from Liverpool/London, ‘Violent Dreams’ are a melancholic shoegaze/dream-pop duo who specialise in creating mesmeric sonic soundscapes whilst doffing a well worn cap to the originators of the respective genres. Think ‘Cocteau Twins’ forged with the instrumental prowess of ‘Mazzy Star’, a sprinkling of modern goth & noisy alt-rock and you’ll stumble onto their collective sound. Consisting of Matt & Abby, ‘Violent Dreams’ unleashed their debut five track entitled ‘Scared of the Dark’ to the masses back in 2017 and have followed it up with this latest sophomore EP entitled ‘Serotonin’. The five track EP was officially released back on March 17th 2019 and is available to buy/download right now via violentdreams.bandcamp.com

‘Lost In You’ jangles into the ether on a wave of luscious guitar and swells of synth before haunting vocalisations awash in reverb move atop of repetitive lines of percussion. Deeply melancholic and brilliantly executed, this track is filled with mesmerising chord changes and catchy hooks that ebb and flow through layers of shimmering reverberations as slow moving lines of bass cascade just beneath the mix. Brilliant lead lines haunt the entire track as we tumble through the ether completely enveloped in blissful noise. A fantastic opening salvo indeed. Up next, ‘I’m Still Here’ arrives with a sprinkle of tambourine, slow moving lines of guitar and booming lines of bass. Repetitive bass kicks add atmosphere as the vocals float on shimmering waves of reverb and those lead guitar highlights lead us into a magnificent chorus change. Explosive cymbal hits crash as drum rolls rumble and lead guitar soar skywards in a haze of glorious golden tinged reverb. ‘I’m Still Here’ is intensely atmospheric  and a definite standout track. ‘Grace’ swirls into the sonic arena on a menacing chug of guitar steeped in reverb pulling slow moving percussion and that irresistible vocal tone with it. Sullen verse parts work through the gears before we tumble into another huge chorus break filled with wide scoped reverbs and woozy chord changes. Drenched in melancholy, ‘Grace’ is infectious.

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The EP’s penultimate piece entitled ‘The Terror’ is instrumentally reminiscent of ‘Treasure’ era ‘Cocteau Twins’ with its impressive instrumentation and oodles of reverb all swirling around that massive vocal line. A brilliantly addictive percussive assault drives everything forwards as swirling synths, throbbing bass lines and excellent production lifts the entire track skywards allowing the vocal line to permeate absolutely everything. Quite possibly my favourite track on the entire release ‘The Terror’ holds it’s head high. The EP closes out with ‘Serotonin’, magical acoustic vibes weave a golden web used primarily to capture that magnificent vocal line as those swirling organ swells, captivating synth and the slow moving thud of percussion keeps a deafening metronomic time. Beautiful and awe inspiring, ‘Serotonin’ is a fascinating ending to a wonderfully refreshing EP.






Del Chaney - (Author Photo)

Del Chaney has spent the last six years dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, postpunk & modern psych rock from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog – The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion (Now On Hiatus). His other arm  – Primal Radio –  has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has helped him in actively promoting genres of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.