Ringo Deathstarr - Mauve
Mauve, the second full length from Texan rockers Ringo Deathstarr is the sound of yet another guitar band frustratingly intent on emulating the spaced out sound of early 90s shoegaze. While always able to cause a remarkably enjoyable amount of distortion and noise, their early output never really felt like anything other than a derivative attempt at being ‘the next My Bloody Valentine’. Yet while initially sounding like an unoriginal bleary haze, Mauve is undoubtedly worth more involvement and respect from its audience than a passive judgement. On a technical level there is little here to fault, Alex Gehring’s effeminate murmurs lubricate the drone, while visceral drum work consistently gives tracks that would otherwise be lost in the ether of noise a sense of alarming melody.
It’s no surprise to find that the highlights are those that best display a complete understanding of its influences, or simply put, sound exactly the same as them. Mid album cut ‘Fifteen’ lifts MBV’s contorted rhythm guitar from any choice cut on Loveless you care to mention, while closer ‘Wave’ progresses from sparse dream pop into a chaotic breakdown a la The Breeders. Ringo Deathstarr now appear fully comfortable with their style and have refined each subsequent release in such a way that Mauve compensates with intrigue, confidence and a humanity that can only come from a band completely in love with their own artistic mess.