Q4U: Q1 Deluxe Edition 1980-1983 LP (Dark Entries, 2013)

May 11, 2013 at 11:05 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Q4U: Q1 Deluxe Edition 1980-1983

Q4U: Q1 Deluxe Edition 1980-1983

Very generous anthology of early ’80s Iceland post-punk synth-pop band Q4U. Most of the 16 tracks here feature fast drum machine beats, post-punk bass and guitar, and crazed, sometimes screechy female vocals in Icelandic. The few English-sung tracks reveal some dark, disturbed shit going on; “Why” depicts someone killing themself, going to hell, and praying to Jesus to take them away. It’s also way longer than most of the other tracks and has a beatless, wavy-synth intro before the beats come in. “Onward” is the most punk-sounding track here, with live drums and a thick bass guitar line. “Creeps” also has live drums, rips off the melody of Kraftwerk’s “The Model”, and broken English lyrics about killing one’s family. “Sigurinn” is another post-punk song with live drums and guitar, great harmonies and a really catchy melody. “Draugasaga” also has live drums, goblin-like vocals from multiple singers, and a distant, rainy-night sax solo in the middle. “Miracle Man” stands out as being the only English-sung track without really dark lyrics, plus it has synth melody and driving rhythm. “Skemmtistadur” has a super-fast plunky beat, thick bass guitar and distorted vocals. The last three songs on the album are from the same session, and have the same fast beats and distorted vocals, adding some swirly guitar sounds. “Plastic Vision” has English lyrics about television and aimless, bored people wandering in the streets. “Turninn” is even faster and more furious. “Family” starts out slow, then kicks into the beat and sings about being a big, loving family “in the mountain of Halloween”; seems like something sinister is going on here but I can’t entirely tell what. Sounds awesome in any case.

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