Sonnets x Sketches – Gongkreeper (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

20841727_1945123315734678_4871932793297846414_nIf someone like Nick Cave best typifies the dark, sweeping and majestic end point of the western blues derived musical experiment; Gongkreeper is the flipside of that coin. Joe Cherry, the man driving this creative vehicle, makes music which comes from a younger, angst ridden and intense place, one that has evolved out of the possibilities afforded by more recent technologies and more likely to tip its hat to Krautrock pioneers and New Romantic non-conformists than the more traditional canon.

Sonnets x Sketches is an intriguing sonic package, wandering from smooth, ambient and almost soulful sounds to warped sonic claustrophobia, from a sort of computer brained ethereality to a broken industrial onslaught. And somehow the two ends of the chosen musical spectrum seem to blend remarkably seamlessly.


There is something of the city and the night inherent in the music, it evokes shadowed back streets, rain lashed buildings, neon gaudiness and aged and decaying architecture. Its myriad musical blends of the modern via hip-hop beats and synth wastelands and the more traditional musical structures perfectly reflecting the juxtapositions of the urban sprawl.

But more than anything these five sonic sonnets and skittering sketches paint pictures, not necessarily those intended by the author but music is at its best when it engages and evokes. This dark suite, which sits between cinematic soundtrack and down beat alt-pop, does all of that and more. Now all you the listener have to do is make the film that it suggests.

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