15 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Blank Dogs’ is a storeplace of things better kept out of the sunlight. In this case, it’s a treasure trove of musical spirits of the past, everything from brooding post-punk to goth to noise rock, all of the black-is-best variety. After a couple of years of anonymity and a torrent of releases, Mike Sniper emerged from the shadows of his nom de plume and his Brooklyn cave, releasing Under and Under for In the Red Records — a perfect pairing. Blank Dogs’ music is murky and itchy like a woolen shroud, and like many In the Red artists, is clearly influenced by a particular time in the chronology of rock music. Under and Under throbs and hisses with the sounds of the late ‘70s/early ‘80s: Joy Division, Cabaret Voltaire and the Cure are particularly evident, with thorny guitars, fertile bass lines and icy synths coloring every track. Occasional surprises, like the riffs of acoustic guitar on “I. Machine” and the sparkling edge of “Open Shut,” lend the collection real luster. Members of labelmates Vivian Girls and Crystal Stilts make cameos on this intriguing outing.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Blank Dogs’ is a storeplace of things better kept out of the sunlight. In this case, it’s a treasure trove of musical spirits of the past, everything from brooding post-punk to goth to noise rock, all of the black-is-best variety. After a couple of years of anonymity and a torrent of releases, Mike Sniper emerged from the shadows of his nom de plume and his Brooklyn cave, releasing Under and Under for In the Red Records — a perfect pairing. Blank Dogs’ music is murky and itchy like a woolen shroud, and like many In the Red artists, is clearly influenced by a particular time in the chronology of rock music. Under and Under throbs and hisses with the sounds of the late ‘70s/early ‘80s: Joy Division, Cabaret Voltaire and the Cure are particularly evident, with thorny guitars, fertile bass lines and icy synths coloring every track. Occasional surprises, like the riffs of acoustic guitar on “I. Machine” and the sparkling edge of “Open Shut,” lend the collection real luster. Members of labelmates Vivian Girls and Crystal Stilts make cameos on this intriguing outing.

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