(mini) Review: Backlash – Quiet Men EP

In reviewing a 3-song EP how much space should be devoted to the subject at hand? In the case of this startlingly interesting and powerful EP, as much as it damn well takes.

A tribute of sorts to classic John Foxx-era Ultravox, the Swedish electronic band take the title track and Slow Motion by the electronic pioneers and update them beautifully, in fact, in some respects improving on the originals (and how often can we say that about classics?), giving them a punch and power the originals never knew and for that matter a punch and power we’ve never seen evidence of in Backlash before.

Softsynth has written about our fondness for Backlash and their wholly original approach to electronic music, but even at that, this small collection surprises. For the first time, Backlash has shown they have serious balls. The two Ultravox covers are heavy with bass and abrasive, screeching synths that drag their fingernails across a sonic blackboard to beautiful effect. For good measure they also throw in original, “Lipstick” which every bit as strong, heavy and intense as the Ultravox tracks, giving us a glimpse into what the next Backlash album might sound like. If so, sign us up, ’cause this is the good shit.

Ultravox hasn’t sounded so fresh in 25 years and Backlash has never sounded so gutsy and strong. The marriage is one made in heaven.

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