photo manipulation by nacrowe
second acts in music are always difficult. its arguably even more difficult when coming off a successful stint in a well-known band. it goes exponentially from there if you're former bandmate was your abuser.
such is the case with ALICE GLASS, former front-woman for influential CANADIAN ELECTROCLASH/SYNTHPOP duo CRYSTAL CASTLES. i almost feel guilty even mentioning such since her association with that situation should not define her, but i would be remiss in not mentioning it is part of her history. in a sense her persona as an artist embraces it.
in my opinion her solo work holds up to her previous gig, albeit with a less abrasive edge and more conventional pop hooks. part of the appeal of CRYSTAL CASTLES was their extreme use of texture and clipping, red-lined vocals that distorted in a beautiful cacophony over hard driving synth beats. with her recent solo work it is almost like a veil of noise has been lifted and you can really appreciate her voice as it is no longer muddled in the mix. its an aesthetic decision, albeit a more mainstream one, but in a way it is almost like you are hearing her for the first time minus the extreme processing of her voice.
i'd recommend her CRYSTAL CASTLES work, as it is excellent, but there i a part of me that doesn't want to support her abuser who has carried on that outfit without her.