Newest review from Austin TX minimalist dark wave Delphine Coma’s album “Leaving the Scene”. I love the fitting title of this album because if I had only one word I was allowed to write about this release it would be unapologetic. This is a release that tune smith Ashe Ruppe has called forth from the sonic ether with a fresh minimalist vibe that is a dangerous break from the modern darkwave norm. I first caught wind of them from Ashe’s vocals on previously reviewed Kill Shelter‘s track “In Decay” one of my favorites from a great album. I found this CD and have immersed myself in it ‘s tortured textures and soul striking soundscapes. This album is full of desolation and loneliness. It has distant dirge drums and twisting guitars that put me in mind of the Chameleons UK. A true throwback sound which hearkens the muddy bleakness of early goth music. The feel is not dynamic, instead the emotions portrayed are weighty and intense. This is not an album aiming for beauty but instead one that opens a maw that shows the listener a bottomless pit into an abyss that stares back and questions your preconceptions. Rhythmic bass lines, and vibrating keyboards that aim for tension not for comfort.
Ashe’s vocals are a sinister baritone that never break stride as he lulls and beckons the listener into dangerous and forgotten aspects. Every time I thought this will be the change of pace song. The one that will release this immense pressure of dark seething weight, I was piled on with another share of the crushing power of the words and sounds. If you came looking for a pop album or a toe tapping dance groove you arrived at the wrong place. These are thinking songs for a spiritual journey towards the self reflective aspects of the human soul.
Touch – This twisting winding guitar riff and vocal cadence is what really put me in mind of the Chameleons (one of my all time favorite bands) It’s sinister, its challenging. “I feel your touch, I feel the coldness of your skin” This song lets Ashe’s vocal’s shine in there effortless cold clarity.
We Never Sleep – Crawling synths like grinding gears. With countering delayed guitar lines. Echoed vocals that seem to crawl towards you from a hundred miles away. This song creates an enormous gravity in it’s effect. “And when the substance breaks, we walk into the sea and never look back. Terrifying, beautiful, desolate.
Moth Meets Flame – A strange out of place change for the album but one I found myself drawn to. I am reminded a bit of the dance hall drone of Good Bye Horses. The vocals are a spooky spoken word chant. The synths continue to build from the bottom up creating an offsetting feeling. “Desire is calling, desire Is falling, desire is bleeding”
Overall this album is not an easy journey, yet one I found I couldn’t turn away from. A complete concept, a forbidden tale. Abandon all hope ye who enter. These songs are nightmares given flesh. Walk in darkness with it. Feel the danger of despair and live to tell the tale. Buckle in for this thinking persons album.
Band: Delphine Coma
Album: Leaving the Scene
Label: Swiss Dark Nights Records
Edited and Mixed: Ashe Ruppe
Recorded: Aetemum Studios
Members: Ashe Ruppe – Music and Vocals, Guest Musicians: Amendoa Lizzbeth Tamburri – ambient guitar and lyrics on “Touch” Domokos Benczedi – Bass guitar on “Comatose”
Author: Ken Magerman from Sounds and Shadows