CD Reviews > Gang of Four

Gang of Four - The Dying Rays (Feat. Herbert Gronemeyer)

Ah, I love having my expectations blown out of the water! Gang of Four, last I remembered, were an indie rock band without much outstanding quality; and who is Herbert Gronemeyer? A talented German actor/singer with an impressive body of work. The Dying Rays is a 4-track digital release, and is made available through Metropolis Records. So let's take a listen:

The Dying Rays - "Only dust in the dying rays". "The Dying Rays"-album version is certainly the root track of the EP and a very solid song in its own right. Very fitting for play during these shorter fall days. I'm very impressed by the range of people who ask me who this is when they overhear it playing from my flat. A solemn, subdued track with just enough of a beat to drive the lyrics along.

"Staubkorn (German Version)" is the same song as "The Dying Rays" Track 1; only now featured entirely in German. This is not the first time I've reveled in the way German words have their own way with rhythm (for example, take a listen to Einsturzende Neubauten). There is a similar vibe here, but this track is much more laid-back and low key than I expected.

"The Dying Rays (Rivalry Remix)": The easiest way to describe this remix is to compare it to a favorite of mine, 808 State's "Azura" mixes. This is, thankfully, not an EBM or 'post-industrial' remix. This is closer in style to trip-hop, with great sonic playfulness of the vocal content. "The Dying Rays Rivalry Remix Instrumental" has no vocal content (as the name would imply); and I think some crafty DJs out there will use these beats for their own remixes -- or to bridge elements into their sets. So there you have the first of four new EPs released this year from Metropolis Records. Four out of five stars. You can download the first track to get an idea if you want the whole enchilada for $1.29 via Amazon.

~Alexavier S. Strangerz