Silence in the Snow – Break in the Skin
Dream Pop | Post Punk
I have come across several bands this year who have tried in vain to combine the dark, deliberate drama of post punk with the lush soundscapes of dream pop. The two styles seemed to be as imiscible as oil and water as time after time talented bands have failed to mix them together with any semblance of grace or skill. Enter Silence in the Snow, hailing from Oakland, California, who appear to have got the mix just right with what can only be described as musical alchemy. With their debut album this duo have created their own unique sound that is both sparse and expansive in equal measures.
I feel the organ plays a lead role in the success of their sound. This underrated instrument is put to great use by the skilled hands of Andy Z to build tension and create a gorgeous ethereal atmosphere. There is also much to be said for frontwoman Cyn M’s soaring sorrowful vocals which at times create more of a wall of sound than the instruments themselves. With traces of Kate Bush, and even clear influences of Jim Morrison, her voice adds to the intriguing interplay of light and shade at work. Break in the Skin is an assured and impressive debut and one of the more curious creations of 2016. It requires no stretch of the imagination to see how these tracks could reach new heights in a live setting and how the band can continue to refine their signature sound on future releases.