A Cold War City – Ammo (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

This latest dark and gorgeous “art attack” from the multi-disciplined Ammo doesn’t so much feel like a song in the conventional sense but is more akin to a lingering strangeness that you experience when waking from an unsettling dream. It is less a song and more a sensation. It seems to drift and linger rather than get delivered; it is dark and delicious yet odd and disarming. And that seems wonderfully appropriate given what its creator was trying to convey, “A Cold War City is an exploration of human memory and its fickle nature. We rewrite details of past experience over and over until eventually, a fiction replaces our recollection. We are the authors of our own memoirs which are under constant revision,” she explains.

Within the lush and drifting sonics, the epic sound washes and the ever-changing, fluid forms that A Cold War City is composed of you can hear all manner of references and the echos of the likes of The Cocteau Twins, The Banshees more considered moments, This Mortal Coil and Lynchian soundtracks abound. 

And at the heart of the song is a wonderful contradiction one that raises an interesting question. How can a song seemingly comprised of such gossamer strands, such delicate textures, such fluid tones impact the listener with such weight? I guess where many artists try to grab the listeners attention with short sharp shocks, by turning the volume up or delivering a sonic sucker punch, Ammo, being smarter than your average creative, gets her music noticed by deftly adding slender layers of music, one on top of the other until the result is a claustrophobic wall of sound that seems to cocoon and envelop the listener. Much more subtle and gorgeously effective.

It’s such a shame that only yesterday, I posted my end of year playlist of my favourite tracks of 2021 as this would certainly have made the cut. Still, that’s one in the bank for next years list.

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