There's something approaching a PNKSLM sound. To say that is not to suggest the kind of overarching sameness that one found on, say, 4AD right before the label signed Throwing Muses and Pixies, but, rather, to highlight that this label has an aesthetic. And the folks at PNKSLM pursued that vision perfectly when they signed Angelic Milk.
The Russian band has released a few things already, but this Friday sees the four-piece drop their debut full-length release. Divine Biker Love is, as its title suggests, the finest sort of glam-smash mash-up one could possibly envision coming from these musicians. As "Acid and Coca Cola" rockets out the speakers, equal parts Transvision Vamp and Phil Spector, a listener is knocked on the heels. The sound here is at once pop and the deconstruction of pop music. Nay, it's the obliteration of the form and reconstruction of it all at once. If a number like "Ball Gag Ki$$" suggests The Glitter Band covering early Siouxsie, it's also a superb rock-'n'-roll number, equal parts snarling and seductive. Elsewhere, the bright "Celebrate" sees Angelic Milk offer up something that sounds like The Cure circa-Head On The Door mixed with The Primitives. Lush and catchy, this is one of the best tracks this lot have offered up so far, and an indication of some subtle progression in their approach.
Divine Biker Love stands on its own as an excellent record. And for those of us who already loved this band, it reveals a refinement of the act's attack. "When The Limousines Pass By", for instance, is elegant and stately, even as "Black Flaming Hotel" nods directly back at The Jesus and Mary Chain. I suppose name-checking other acts is a futile cause here as so much of Angelic Milk's music is beyond easy description. Sure, stuff like "Winona" chimes with a certain indie familiarity, but the rest of Divine Biker Love stands as truly original in an era of safe approximation. There's something genuinely dangerous bubbling under here, and yet Angelic Milk have managed to craft something divinely catchy on this album. Divine Biker Love really is one of the best long-players I've heard yet from PNKSLM and I can think of no higher praise to offer than that.
More information on Angelic Milk via the band's official Facebook page.
[Photo: Uncredited promotional picture]