Siamese Twins - Still Corner (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Siamese Twins

Still Corner (2014)


On a self—released cassette demo in 2011, Siamese Twins appeared just about fully formed on sight. Over the course of 19 minutes, the band could skip from cold—eyed, dark post—punk ripped from the Joy Division playbook ("Illusion") to lighter—hearted, hazy dream pop that could almost pass for Vivian Girls ("We Fall Apart") without batting an eye. Although it was lethargic at times, they showed adept skills at either method (or anything in between), and the "In a Box" b/w "Stutter" single that followed a year later upped the stakes considerably with a sharper, bigger recording, and the band delivering a pair of engaging and thoughtfully crafted songs that merged the styles into something fresh, as if Dum Dum Girls brought in Peter Hook to produce and record bass on a record. Naturally, one would expect their first full—length, Still Corner, to capitalize on this with a marveling consistency and wide breadth. And it doesn't quite do that, falling just a short step behind that single, but does take the stylistic template of "In a Box" and "Stutter" and creatively dent, contort and generally fuck around with it on a very good proper debut LP.

The band definitely haven't overhauled their M.O., necessarily. Still Corner is full of frigid life: breathy, reverb—punched vocals and stoic backing "ahh"s at tasteful intervals; shadowy, sinister bass tone rumbling in the foreground; and —— at points straight—up delightful —— post—punk riffs tossed off with ease ("Astray"). Cocteau Twins have been a frequent point of comparison, and while that's not far off, Siamese Twins allow for far less swirling in their atmospheres, though they do pick up on their glimpses of optimism. The middle of Still Corner shows that off back—to—back with "Submission" and "Mass Produced," the latter a jangly parallel to the girl group indie revival of recent years and providing some sun between the gloom in spite of its confident stubbornness ("I'll never change"). Not long after, "Alone" adds a moment of upbeat character despite its ugly theme ("We'll come to despise this deeply hidden trust") that borders on shimmery, jangly garage pop.

The gloom that surrounds it can be rather striking, though: namely the bass of gothic despondency opening the title track, which tells of "this fear of living" and "lives and loves lost tonight" —— short and quick but big—picture phrases. "Discarded Skin" splits the difference between the moods, pointing out the flaws of an imbalanced partnership through an album hook highlight tucked in at Still Corner's end ("So just let go / you'll never know / all these thoughts I have / these dreams will pass").

All told, Still Corner makes an official first statement of Siamese Twins as a compelling and creative, nearly genre—bender, and at least genre—masher, unafraid to mesh albeit related styles (and deliver them with revealing vulnerabilities) to pleasing effect.

You can check it outhere.