Unison – Unison

Unison – Outside by Lentonia

Unison is a French dark electro duo who are still far under the radar in Canada. Though they’ve had some singles and an EP floating around for a long time (Outside has been around for a couple of years), this is their first full length.
Unison is polished and feels like the result of a long time’s work – there’s nothing lo-fi about this. It’s a deliciously dark album you can get away with putting on in almost any situation, and is a throwback to when music was produced with care (it freaks me out to compare Slowdive’s most majestic tracks with a lot of music I’m listening to now – where is the love?), without being redundant.
A Unison review might be the perfect time to examine 2010’s witch house – Unison is one of the last good bands to still openly claim to be part of the genre. Many of the fundamentals are here: haunting feminine reverb vocals, trance elements, dubstep beats, total atmosphere, and foggy, ambiguous lyrics – missing only are the screw, the drag, and the digital tape hiss. Fans of White Ring, and Salem’s shoegaze-ier tracks, will find a new love here. Yet Unison go their own way, too, incorporating minimal interludes, Glass Candy coquette-try, and M83 / My Bloody Valentine worthy drama.
Outside is still a fascinating track after all this time, and Brothers and Sisters is a magic pop song that any artist, from Britney to Swans, would be proud to put out. The album is long, but never lags – Arp Quad Rollerskate is a light and unexpected intermission, while second to last track First Degree, 50 minutes into the album, demonstrates the kind of emotive power Unison are wielding.
Unison are easy to compare to other acts, both past and contemporary, but that doesn’t mean they don’t hold their own ground and build something genuine on it. These are artists to give your heart to. (Lentonia Records, http://lentonia.com/) Kristel Jax

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