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Tropic Of Cancer – The Sorrow Of Two Blooms review

The bleak soundscapes that draw on a multitude of influences and form the music of Tropic of Cancer seem perfectly suited to the Blackest Ever Black imprint. Both parties have begun the year in auspicious if slightly unnerving form – Be Brave, Tropic Of Cancer’s second release for the Downward imprint was noteworthy for both the dead eyed sonic menace that draped itself messily across your senses and the accompanying remix from Cab Vol ledge Richard H Kirk. Meanwhile, January saw Blackest Ever Black continue their own bleakest ever bleak endeavours with more ghostly electronics from Raime, recently newly crowned in the Private Eye Pseuds Corner thanks to a particularly imaginative review of a London performance.

Faced with the fervent expectation that grew after The Sorrow Of Two Blooms was announced, the three tracks included see Camella Lobo and Juan Mendez excel, ploughing further into the sonic mists – though there’s a certain spectral delight to how the opening track unfolds. Lobo’s voice is drenched in the reverberant drone but clings to foggy strings that embellish the track with a certain degree of light. The languid thump of “Temporal Vassels” lays Lobo’s vocals so deep in the mix you are worried she’s trapped down a well whilst “Dive (Wheel Of The Law)” is perhaps Tropic Of Cancer at their mystifying, bewitchingly hypnotic best. Spread across the B Side, the track is cloaked in viscous fuzz, with Lobo’s yearning yet indecipherable vocals harmoniously glued to the pensive guitar lines. The result is quite captivating.

The point where people discuss the merits of Tropic Of Cancer without feeling the need to mention the disparate relationship of their sound with Mendez’s Silent Servant endeavours should be arriving sooner rather than later on the evidence of this release.

Tony Poland