Every so often an album and group come along that remind us that music and the art of songwriting is not about pretence or a desperate attempt to be loved and adored. GOTHS!!! by Jacob Yates & The Pearly Gate Lock Pickers is a miniature epic that jettisons romance for realism and delivers uncomfortable but extremely relative current and historical truths.
From the ashes of the influentially revered and much missed Glasgow cult 'Horror R&B' group Uncle John & Whitelock, front man of both, Jacob Lovatt can still yelp and howl powerfully like a man possessed but he also puts new life into heartbreaking ballads that could stand as manifestos for the lost and lovelorn. His special brew of horror and loss come with influences from unexpected corners where poetic observations are set to Dub, personal tragedy is told through Folk with dark billowing rhythms and explorations into Jazz, Blues, Ballads and even Gospel do not sound out of place.
Lovatt is joined by Cassie Ezeji (who fronts the infectious Golden Teacher) on tracks such as 'The Gospel According to the Selfish Gene' which is a life affirming rail against blind acceptance and 'Care Home', an unflinching dub that stares into the abyss into which many fall. It is brutal, honest, distressing and describes real horror, a walk through the dark corridors of the human mind while 'The Heart' opens with the captivating narration, “500 years ago we were cutting off peoples heads, look how far we've come, we're still cutting off people's heads.”
Part raucous, affectionate, hilarious, rich, emotive, exhilarating, condemnatory, artful, literate and above all very real, it's impossible not to be moved and affected by this supercharged trip into the 'awful truth'. Life is chaotic, dark and unpleasant but the chinks of light come from the songs themselves. This record asks you the question, how bright is your light going to be?
GOTHS!!! was recorded at Glasgow's now legendary Green Door Studios and is enclosed in a striking looking sleeve by the artist Jacob Kerray.
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