REVIEW: Ikon – “From Angels to Ashes”

By Acyd Burn

Chain Border

From Angels to AshesAnyone who does a good cover of a Death In June song grabs my attention right away. Ikon speeds up the tempo a bit and comes out with quite a nice rendition of the classic Death In June track Fall Apart, which is one of my all time favorites.

Described as one of the premier Goth bands, Melbourne based Ikon formed in 1991 from the ashes of Death In The Dark. Chris McCarter (vocals, guitar), Dino Molinaro (bass), Anthony Griffiths (guitar,vocals) and David Burns (drums) make a striking blend of Gothic/darkwave music, following in the footsteps of Joy Division and early New Order with a touch of Death In June. The four piece band have become known as Australia's biggest Gothic export. To date Ikon have played extensively in Australia as well as Germany, Belgium, Holland and Denmark alongside bands such as The Sisters of Mercy, Him, London After Midnight, Soft Cell, Death In June and The Cruxshadows. A highlight of 2002 was playing at the Mera Luna festival in Germany in front of an audience in excess of 15,000 people, cementing the current line up as the most successful thus far.

In 2003 Ikon will complete their third consecutive European tour. This time promoting their latest release From Angels To Ashes, featuring Ghost In My Head cowritten by David Sterry of Real Life and a cover of Death In June's Fall Apart. This latest release is a best of compilation from the years 1997 to 2003. The thirteen date tour will include Denmark, England, Italy, Switzerland and in the middle, Wave Gotik Treffen 2003 Leipzig, Germany. Other bands playing at this four day festival are Faith and the Muse, Laibach, Tiamat, VNV Nation and Wayne Hussey of The Mission...just to name a few.

The CD spans the Gothic and Gothrock genre and introduces us to Ikon's back catalogue of works. From Angels to Ashes is a complete gem for anyone who has been a part of this scene from the old school days, especially tracks like the new version of Subversion which is very much like an Echo And The Bunnymen track of days gone by. The musical talent in the band is apparent on each song with each member playing in perfect timing and with melodic excellence. From Angels to Ashes has to be one of the best releases in the Goth rock and post punk genres this year.

The CD bounces around with tracks like Ghost In My Head having a somewhat eighties darkwave feel to it, a dance floor friendly backbeat with the traditional synth lines and Goth rock bass licks providing a solid low end on this track and then moves to more Joy Division type tracks like Reality Is Lost. I see a rather strong likeness to Echo And The Bunnymen with a darker side. Anthony Griffith’s vocals are very much like those of Ian McCulloch of The Bunnymen. I think Ikon has released a top CD with this release. All tracks stand up as genre defining releases. From Angels to Ashes is one CD not to be without. After hearing this disc I have restored faith that this style of music is about to make a big comeback in the states. With releases like this and Screams For Tina's newest CD 2003 A.D., the onslaught of post punk and Goth rock will have the best releases to date for the genre being made in the present day music scene with some tracks far surpassing its predecessors. If you like bands like Death In June, Joy Division and Echo and the Bunnymen, this CD has to be in your collection.

Contact Information:
Post: PO Box 277, Fleminglen, VIC, 3031, Australia

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