Album Review/Interview: Corlyx - Together apart

No matter what vocal range a song calls for, Caitlin seems to hit the mark every time, be it soft and melodic, sung to deeper classic Goth bass lines, or furiously throwing her vocal cords around such as in 'You are safe here' with ESA. She hits it EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

This is also a band that never gives up. Caitlin has made music her life and that dedication shows. No matter the size of the crowd or who is listening, Corlyx play for themselves and that is often where we find the most passionate artists destined for higher heights.

Now Corlyx are dropping an album in a different direction to before, proving that they deserve a seat at the Gothic table and no one will keep them from doing so. With 'Together apart' they are here to stay so shut up or find another table!

We spoke to Caitlin about the album and put together a review having been lucky enough to hear it before it's September 15th launch on their new label Negative Gain.


Interview:


Q. You mentioned to me before wanting to try something different from your previous albums, how would you describe to people the change in direction this album brings and what this album is all about?


A. Theres always been a noticeable shift between all the work we have

put out over the last 4 years, however this record was the biggest

change, entirely stepping away from an Industrial/dark electro back

catalogue to now something in the Post Punk/Darkwave world. I had

toyed around with the idea in the past, but this record was primarily written and produced during Lockdown so for us, writing a goth record finally felt right. I grew up with a Goth Mom and she always had some amazing 80’s playing when I was very young, to say I’m influenced by it would be an understatement.


Q.

With the new video for ‘Porcelain skin’ you have some great vintage footage in regards to mental health which is something you have mentioned elsewhere that it is very personal to you. What is the real message behind the song and video that you want people to think about?

A. I wrote Porcelain Skin during Lockdown but it was also directly after a trip I took to Florida to see my mother after not seeing her for 6 years, she has really debilitating mental illness that keeps getting worse, seeing her living in the state she was in was one of the hardest things to finally come to terms with, she thinks the sun is poison now so she hides from it to the extent that her skin seemed so fragile and pale and the site of her really shook me.

I’ve never publicly talked about this but I felt it was time, in a way sometimes the reality of people who are sick can have this dark beauty. I wanted to talk about that, the track was for me to get that out, if people connect to it in anyway I’m happy for that, but it was very personal I’d say.

Q.

Which songs are you most proud of in this album and which single/s can we expect further down the line?


A. I’m obsessed with 4 tracks on this record and I keep going back and

fourth with favourites, 'We See Red' will be out next with a music video then 'White Wolf', I’m not sure we will shoot a video for 'Find The Killer' but that’s a damn good track, and then there’s 'When The Witch Comes Out' which is so haunting, I’m just like so into this record I’m still not tired of it.

Brandon Ashley did such an amazing job mixing and mastering it as well, I’m very lucky to have his dedication.

Q. There are some incredible bass lines sprinkled throughout this album, and I believe there’s news of a new bassist? Were the song built around the bass lines this time or was the bass added in after the tracks were formed?


A.

To me that’s what post punk is all about, just these dancy dark bass

riffs. I really wanted that to be the focus and I wrote all of the other arrangements/vocal melodies from the bass line - and yes there will be a new addition to the live lineup, we will announce who and when soon.


Q.

What difficulties with lockdown have you had in putting this album together and did the extra time make things easier in some ways?


A. Lockdown was really shocking for us all collectively, I felt the suffering and fear of so many people, I wrote 'Black Wind' which specifically addressed how we were feeling, like sitting there watching the news in shock that this was real life. Overall for me as a person I do really well with trauma having grown up in it, that’s why I became such a valued surgical nurse in my field, I just have always been good under pressure.

I try to be optimistic and a realist at the same time. I ended up being a resource for a lot of my close friends that weren’t doing so well mentally with the reality of Covid, and they were very thankful for that. Creatively, we wrote the best record of our careers, made a lockdown video, got signed to Negative Gain, and got kittens, so all in all, aside from tight finances and having to cancel shows, we did really well.


Q.

You have once again done an incredible feature with Electronic Substance Abuse’s new song ‘Eat their young’ and the video will be released on the 30th, how did that song come together for you both and can you tell us about your experience filming the scenes for it?

A. The first collaboration went so well, and he reached out again, asked me to be the antagonist in the track, it was another powerful production. lyrically I thought that was very interesting, then after I wrote my parts the visual concepts were flooding in and we agreed we had to make a video for it. Jamie shot for like 5 days, I was there for two, we had a blast going around fucking shit up and the Director Myles Faernley was so great to work with I hired him to do the two Corlyx Music Videos, so you’ll see a bit of the connection there.


Q.

Is there an overall conceptual idea to ‘Together apart’ and how do different tracks bring those elements together?


A.

Not really, for the first time this isn’t such a personal album. I wanted it to be spooky and danceable, there’s like 2 personal tracks but the rest are just a peek into how I see things. The title was inspired by the lockdown of course, Together Apart, I don’t want people to always think about that when they listen, but the reality of how it was made is a part of the work.

Q.

There is a lot of 90’s influence that I pick up listening to this album from Garbage, to No Doubt, to even a touch of Madonna and something akin to a dark sibling of the band Curve; Which alongside classic bass and keyboard tunes makes for some very nostalgic, yet instant goth classics such as your track ‘Find the killer’. Was mixing post punk and traditional dark wave together planned or just the way the album came together? Because it is a wonderful combination.


A. It was the first time I planned to 'do a genre' I usually just make music and then after I sort of label what I think it sounds like, fans pick up on so many different influences. I like that it is always different for everyone, it just solidifies Corlyx as it’s own thing, I really am not trying to be the next XYZ or whatever...

I love a lot of different styles of music, but yes this time we sat down and I told Brandon, I want to make a proper Goth Album, musically you can hear that, and my vocals will always have 90’s

vibe to them, all my female influences are primarily there, except

Siousxie and Kate Bush of course, I'm also a huge Harriot Wheeler (The Sundays) fan and my voice sometimes sounds like hers when I’m going very soft, I feel like I learned how to sing from her.

Q. What life lessons has Corlyx taught you so far?


A. Corlyx has taught me to never give up on your dreams, as cheesy as

that sounds... We worked so hard, and no I’ll never be a millionaire but it’s really not about that, I love seeing my baby grow.

Q. Anything you’d like to say to your fans?


A. Thanks for sticking with me through all the changes, ups and downs,

2021 worldwide tour is happening, our CD will not only be available

online but in actual record stores. In America it will even be in Target and Wallmarts!


Thank you Caitlin!

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Review:


How else to start a Goth album than with a wolf's howl and the bass riffs that make you instantly start throwing cobweb hands around a dance floor?

In the opening track 'White Wolf' we have our ears hooked, reeling us in to become caught up in a very promising beginning. Caitlin's vocals are smooth and enticing yet fierce, the bass and drums set off that primal instinct of wanting to 'hunt' around a dance floor and make yourself known. For a very classic Goth sound, it sure does empower and energise you but it stops abruptly and all too short sadly leaving you hungry for more.


We are then yanked in to a very different direction with 'We see red.' There is a nice slap to the bass guitar and a familiar touch of Tory Amos comes across in the vocals which are harmonised to perfection with Brandon adding his voice to the Gothic Hymn.


Which then leads us to 'Find the Killer'.. This has all the hallmark sounds of a night out. You've just checked your coat in and got a drink; As you move away from the bar you begin to hear this absolute beauty of a song calling to you like a siren, demanding you get on the dance floor and have your first sway of the evening. Even though this is a brand new song, it sets off HUGE nostalgia and memories of that first sip and need to dance at Slimelights London.

So in short.. This song sounds like home.

The guitar picks at the strings of your soul, not just your heart. Caitlin's singing is like a medicinal honey easing away all of your pent up stress with that slight twang of anger that then helps vent at the same time.

This is an instant Darkwave hit in that it has everything that makes Goth music great. Even the lyrics are a fantastical journey of innocence encountering danger. The attention to genre detail in this piece of work is nothing short of perfection and I really do not say that lightly.

The first single from the album 'Porcelain skin' is a little at odds tempo wise, almost like two competing tracks playing over one another. It's a busy song. Like a darkwave soundscape but with a Smashing Pumpkins vocal progression. However it does bring up lovely images of driving in a convertible along the Californian coast. Goth's on tour you might say. This is definitely where the post punk element shows through and the serious nature of the track makes it a real aural attack on the senses which helps to get the mental health story of the song across.


There are a couple of songs that don't hit the mark for me but that's down to my personal taste. Each song in this album has been well thought out and produced with real care. From the deliciously upbeat 'Stitches from California' to the easy listening of 'Black Wind.'


I've heard some reviewers have not been keen on the ending track 'Cold' however I think it is an ideal cool down to such an impressive album.. Caitlin whispers a Lullaby with a sense of seduction and sensuality. The frequency level of the music takes you on a tranquil trip through space which makes it a wonderful piece of music for chilling out to.


Tracklist:

White Wolf

We See Red

Find The Killer

Porcelain Skin

When The Witch Comes Out

Jump In

Stitches From California

Black Wind

Your Love Is A Curse

Cold


Conclusion:


This deserves a place amongst Darkwave greats. Corlyx have put together a damn fine album that will have you swaying on a tranquil Goth dance floor one minute with your drink, to spilling it constantly as you wave your arms around and begin to move in the next. There is a selection any Gothic DJ could pick and choose from comfortably here and know that they wouldn't have gone amiss in doing so. I very much love the direction they have chosen to take with this album and I hope they continue to showcase just what else they can create in future. All in all a truly exciting band who have great things destined hopefully!


Top tracks:


Find the killer White Wolf

Cold


Scores:


Technicality: 8.5/10

Dance factor: 9/10

Energy: 8/10

Vocals: 9/10

Re-playability: 8.5/10

Overall score: 8.6 / 10


Check out Corlyx's Alternative directory listing below!

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