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Welcome to SeeDarkly Sunday DisCOVERies: a blog featuring dark alternative goth/industrial cover songs!
First time here? Click here for details from first entry.

It's Second Sunday Slowly where the featured cover is downtempo. This one might be a little obscure:

Cosmetics - Black Candy

Black Candy was the title track of the third album from post-punk indie rock band, Beat Happening, released in 1989. Last year in one interview, lead singer Calvin Johnson declared the album his least favorite of their discography, saying it is "not that interesting." However, with a sound reminiscent of the Cramps, what he regards as uninteresting nevertheless made its impact on the underground music scene and would go on inspire others years later. For instance, in 1992 Fortune Cookie Surprise: A Tribute Album to Beat Happening was released and featured a cover of Black Candy from Sonic Youth. It was a far more distorted and noisier rendition of the song, stark in contrast to the version recently done by Cosmetics.

First off, the Vancouver based duo Cosmetics has the misfortune of having chosen a band name that has been used by at least five other bands since the 80's (more if you take away the "s" or add "the" to the name.) So if you happen to be familiar with any of the other incarnations, as obscure as they pretty much all are, this one formed in 2008, originally called themselves "Softness," and worked together out of a fashion warehouse. The couple, who consider Lux Interior & Poison Ivy of the Cramps role-models for their creative partnership, released a couple of 7" singles in 2010.

With expectations that a proper full length album was forthcoming, the band found their way to Calvin Johnson's Dub Narcotic studio in Beat Happening's hometown of Olympia, Washington to mix that album. However they were ambivalent over the recordings and started from scratch working out of their own "Tuff Track" home studio, only to end up including some potion of the Dub Narcotic mixes on their 2013 limited edition Olympia ...Plus: a compilation of those recordings, their previous 7" releases, and their Tuff Track recording of Black Candy.

While both Beat Happening and Cosmetics consider themselves "pop" in their own way, both fit entirely into branches of the goth genre. Cosmetics has all the signifiers of a minimal synth dark wave band and their cover creatively reduces the grounded grungy punk mood of the original to a cosmically and hypnotically seductive down-tempo sway.

Curiously, sometime between late January and last week, all web-presence for Cosmetics disappeared and, as of this posting, end in dead links: Facebook, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Twitter, Tumblr, etc... (Even their label, Captured Tracks, seems to have eliminated them from their site's artist roster.) While they have been reportedly dormant in-between releases in the past, what this means for the duo is currently beyond my ability to ascertain. They may have broken up or could be gearing up for a relaunch under a new name with all new music and perhaps even the full album they'd been promising. It's as mysterious as their sound. Luckily, their inclusion on the 2014 Let's Peter Out compilation provides us a source to enjoy their cover:

The Cover:


The Original:


Next week:
Normally I'd present a Throwback cover from the 20th century on the Third Sunday of the month, but this month I'm pushing that forward a week to make it a Fourth Sunday Flashback! (It's for Easter. I have... reasons.) Instead, since next Sunday is the first day of Spring, you'll get something very newly sprung from the information age with a quite a bit of... bounce!

Comments, suggestions, discussions, etc... welcome!

I'll be spinning tonight in Cambridge and again in two weeks. Later in the month I'll spin in west Mass. Check my schedule for details and RSVP if you're able to come out. ^_^

Explore the darkness,
-Xero

Previous DisCOVERies

Mar 06 - Erotic Elk - Wicked Game (Chris Isaak)
Feb 28 - A7ie - Bad Romance (Lady Gaga)
Feb 21 - Orgy - Blue Monday (New Order)
Feb 14 - Lovage - Sex (I'm A...) (Berlin)
Feb 07 - Daniela Andrade x Dabin - Heartbeats (The Knife)

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seedarklyxero: SDXeroEye with glow (Default)
DJ Xero, Operative of SeeDarkly™

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