By Bec Hennessy
I smell that familiar sickly sweetness of a smoke machine in the dingy alternative Goth club, whilst being jostled by undulating black clad bodies in the mist. Here is where I am when I close my eyes listening to synth drenched Goth pop/rockers The Creptter Children. This Australian outfits release “Possessed” is my soundtrack. Alternately lurking and taunting, ending in a frenzy of blissful movement.
‘Nightmares put to sound’ is the term they give (or are given), and whilst it certainly is dark, there is a lot of catchy synth pop in this. Which I don’t feel is a bad thing, even if it is maybe not quite the image they are going for.
The vocals are breathy, sugary harmonies mixed with punk rock bravado. ‘Feel My Pain’ has some upbeat keyboards before launching into the industrial beats and heavy guitars. ‘High’ slowly squelches its way towards a pop punk chorus.
“Don’t touch me because I’m made of poison,” Iballa-Chantelle intones darkly over the distortion and atmospheric bleeps of ‘I Live’. ‘I am the one that you love, the one you hate to love’ – she continues taunting, before seething guitars kick in and carry her voice upwards. Whispers, shamanic groans and chugging guitars lurch ominously before the industrial beats return.
‘Love Hurts’ is a sprawling 6:26 minute long synth pop ballad that showcases what they can do. Okay, so maybe the thunderstorm effect could be considered cheesy, but it lapses into a chilled out almost hip hop beat before the ominous synths reclaims the track. The bombastic sweeping chorus is catchy and danceable as hell. If this track doesn’t get people moving and mouthing endearments to each other on that smoky dance floor then what would?
‘Possessed’ continues in the same vein with distorted moaned vocals over heavy guitar, broken up by another big catchy chorus. Catchy hooks are the key here. I’m as a big a gloomy Goth as the next person (well maybe slightly more so) but what I like about Creptter Children is that it’s more dark synth pop dream, than nightmare. A dark dream you can dance in.