The Asphodells - Ruled by Passion Destroyed by Lust (4 stars)

Andrew Weatherall project takes in electronica, guitar and acid house

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The Asphodells - Ruled by Passion Destroyed by Lust

(Rotters Golf Club)

Given the ephemeral nature of dance music, remaining relevant after 25 years involvement without taking advantage of nostalgia for your former glories, may not be the easiest task. However, Andrew Weatherall seems to have achieved this with Ruled by Passion Destroyed by Lust. When asked in a recent interview to recall the genre’s best period, his jokey reply of ‘last week’ typifies the DJ and producer’s desire to constantly evolve rather than dwell on the past. Recorded under various guises, his varied back catalogue illustrates the point.

Departing from the rock’n’roll leanings of last album Pox on the Pioneers, his debut as The Asphodells alongside current studio collaborator, Timothy J Fairplay, takes its cue from sounds you’re likely to hear at A Love from Out of Space. Weatherall’s travelling club night has made Glasgow’s Berkeley Suite and Edinburgh’s Caves two of its successful homes.

Mingling some of the pair’s favourite musical elements; drifting, Augustus Pablo-inspired melodica, echoing punk guitar riffs and quivering synths atop a pulsing, disco beat, opener ‘Beglammered’ sets the tone, its Arabesque-melody adding a hint of intrigue. ‘Never There’ has Weatherall adding a treated vocal chant to choppy guitar and spacey, dub-fuelled effects over a chugging tempo, while ‘Skwatch’ amplifies the echo-laden approach, adding thick bass licks to the now familiar angular riffs.

The introspective, mysterious electro of ‘Another Lonely City’ follows before poet John Betjeman’s ‘Late Flowering Lust’ is given a punk-funk makeover; Weatherall’s vocals again feature on the guitar meets acid house and edgy electronica of ‘We Are the Axis’ and ‘One Minute’s Silence’. ‘Quiet Diginity’ blends Peter Hook-style bass, melodica and an alluring chord sequence, before this impressive album closes with a haunting, hypnotic take on AR Kane’s ‘A Love from Outer Space’.

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