Album Review

Sic – “Thought Noises” – [Dark Entries]

Thurston Hunger   4/4/2012   12-inch, A Library

Dark Entries opened a mesmerizing door to the past Belgian underground
with Vita Noctis, and now another. This time it’s 1979-1981, and while
SIC may have been synchronous with a lot of the icy minimal wave re-releases
as of late, the buoyant bass of Wilhelm Dunker alone makes this a unique
brainy brand of yesteryear’s sins of the synth. The keyboards here are
also more jaunty, with shadows of a calliope rather than laser beams in
a mausoleum. On top of it all, at least on the A-side, Micheline Dufert’s
voice, singing in English, but thinking Dutching and looking at French
magazines has a great disconnected aura. Disconnected in terms of the
phrasing of the words (check out A2 and its choruse) and ultimately
lyrically to herself. But I wondered if the band chose the name SIC
meaning, what we say we mean, even if it is twisted and sticking out
like a compound fracture? There is a lot of identity collapsing, and
Micheline’s husky urgent voice works so well. I was sadly shocked when
she disappears from the mic on side B’s collection of latter day demos?
Side A is the complete set of three 7″ records SIC issues. Overall,
you get a suprisingly catchy brand of new wave, with a gloriously
twitchy vibe from her singing. Guitar is lightly spritzed in, and there
are some sax patches (a little too smooth on “Free Radio Stations” but
better on “New Rose In Town” and briefly on “Absence”) Ultimately it
is the busy bass (such a key to “pop” music) and dizzy but dark vox
over synths that make this sounds still stand up today. Don’t miss!

-Thurston Hunger

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