GAZELLE TWIN - BLACK DOG[FROSTED CLEAR VINYL]
In her three studio albums to date, Gazelle Twin has looked out: out at cities, out from a tormented body, out at the squirming guts of rural Britain, but on her first album for new label, Invada Records, she turns her gaze inwards. Black Dog is an album about confronting fear, and the expectation that the things that lurked in the darkness when you were a child will disappear as you become an adult.
Black Dog tells a story that unfurls like a film. It addresses how our childhoods shaped our adulthoods: how any sense of trauma and grief is burnished onto a person's memories forever, however much we try and escape it. Black Dog suggests how these feelings return in particular intensity when a person becomes a parent, as they watch themselves pass things on that they wish they hadn't, wish they wouldn't.
In some ways, Bernholz is purging herself on this album. Unlike her masked characters for previous releases, her face is recognisable and, she explains, she is “not as removed this time” from her persona. She is imagining herself as a medium for the voices inside herself, rather than looking out to displace them with other ideas. She emerges huge and godly as she does so, her voice moving from delicate tenderness to doom-driven power.
This is an album where old stories have to be pillaged, digested, and regurgitated to write new ones, where we have to question ourselves utterly. Black Dog looks back and looks in and looks back and looks in. We enter as we listen. We turn ourselves inside-out altogether.
Fear Keeps Us Alive
The Long Room
Author Of You
Walk Through Walls
A Door Opens