And so Ladytron stomped their way back onto the scene in 2008 with their latest album “Velocifero”, their most cohesive and compelling album to date. The glamour electronic rock synth band have yet to miss the mark with their music and this effort is no exception.
“Black Cat” opens the album like a techno Space Odyssey with grizzly bass lines and rocking drum beats. In what is an almost instrumental opening track, the vocals are foreign and barely noticeable until everything else fades off.
“Ghosts” then takes up the baton in my favourite song from the album. It’s like taking a road trip with a rock group and a disco ball. There’s something specifically retro about this song, maybe its the whammy bass chords. The excellent chorus is something to chant along to and it shows off all of Ladytron’s strengths in one magical hit.
“I’m Not Scared” is a great fast paced song that is slightly discordant and with it, the song has a certain edge to it that makes it also very special, especially the verses. Its just got such a hook to it, it will stay in your head. Also working discord and minor chords to great effect is “Runaway”, a slightly slower down tempo disco shuffler with a funky choice of chords.
“Seasons of Illusion” too works the same magic with the signatory robotic style vocal which drives this song forward along with some lovely backing vocals and keyboard flourishes while “Burning Up” sounds like a bitter Soft Cell song taken from one of their lesser known albums with a great climactic ending.
“Kletva” signals the half way point with a short foreign track using various organ sounds and tapping percussion which while is different, didn’t work for me as it sounds like a weird Christmas song and the second half is much better than the first. It’s quickly followed by the disco-rock-tastic “They Gave You a Heart, They Gave You a Name” which is perfect Ladytron with some Sassy singing.
“Predict the Day” has some heavily produced drum and a nice whistle tune in the background in what’s a more spacious song compared to the rest which really bleed and drown the sound through the speakers. “The Lovers” is the second short track which starts as a beautiful album piece flying from speaker to speaker before the band comes in with a short and simple track which is still pulling the punches. “Deep Blue” has sultry deep low vocals and falls definitely on the disco party side of Ladytron. Not that you’ll see people dancing to it in nightclubs, but its just to good not to wiggle to.
“Tomorrow” starts the last hurrah with a more spacey keyboard driven track almost a bit like early Depeche Mode, all instruments pressed hard against the speakers for extra effect. This song is particularly catchy and a standout for being just a simply good song with no massive gimmick. The closer is “Verses”, the longest song on the album and also one that lets the males take the vocals. Its an interesting song because even with a male voice, the pure excellence of the group as a whole shines undiminished.
“Velocifero” is a success. While the overall sound is samey throughout and some may say its overproduced to sound under produced I enjoyed it immensely. Some of Ladytron’s most simplistic songs are here but they are catchy, fun and upbeatly miserable. You can’t argue with that!