My Gold Mask
Moon Sounds Records
Release Date: March 4, 2016
Chicago’s My Gold Mask is the brainchild of frontwoman Gretta Rochelle and guitarist Jack Armondo. The band began in 2009 and have played alongside such bands as The New Pornographers, Blonde Redhead, and Japandroids, among others.
My Gold Mask immediately makes me think of the great, and wildly unrecognized, New Wave underground from their early 2000’s (most of it coming from Chicago and Philadelphia). The band have big synths, reverb-laden guitars, and sharp, sexy female vocals that all blend together wonderful into expertly crafted pop tunes that fit right in alongside artists such as Lights, CHVRCHES, and maybe even some old T.A.T.U tracks.
The big thing here, for me, is that My Gold Mask seem to share the same affinity for Pop anthems as I do. The lead single, “Battles,” is an excellent example, starting off with cold, hollow sounding synths that remind me of the darker moments on the early Duran Duran albums before picking up the pace and letting the vocals soar during the chorus. “Gone Gone Gone” has much the same feel, but with a fuller sound overall. The male vocal here is a nice contrast to Rochelle’s unique sound. “Insomnia” plays the classic “Oh Oh Oh” to a tee, while some Dubstep style breaks twist together with a pretty gnarly lead guitar to counterbalance the sugary sound of Rochelle’s voice and it keeps the song sounding modern. The album’s final moment, “Severed,” is another personal favorite. It’s a bit mellower than a lot of the album but it’s gentler approach gives it a bit more of an introspective sound.
I really, really dig this album. Rochelle’s voice is as unique as they come and the music is dynamic enough to rock when it needs to rock without overpowering the vocals or the melodies. My Gold Mask’s Anxious Utopia is an excellent record that is truly deserving of your time and money if you enjoy any kind of Pop music at all.
Reviewed by mark1340