Italian psych-folk-rock pioneers, Psychopathic Romantics have dropped their new single, ‘The Gathering’ which is one for lovers of dark, atmospheric, intriguing rock music. It’s a foreboding and looming sort of track builds towards something drastic, but you’re not quite sure what it is. What can be said, is that there are certainly some political undertones to the track, which is why the band have chosen to release the single now, despite it appearing on their 2015 album, Bread and Circuses.
Typical instrumentation is not status quo for Psychopathic Romantics, as they often use mandolins and bouzoukis (I had to look that one up), in addition to your traditional guitars. It is these unique sounds that set the band apart and create a rather eerie feeling due to the juxtaposition of sounds; they shouldn’t go together, but somehow they work in their vast contrast. The hysterical laughing at the end of the track only adds to this sinister mood.
The vocals of lead singer, Dust, drone low and heavy throughout the track, perfectly accompanied by the bass, acting in much the same way. An electric guitar screams delicately behind the potent and pertinent lyrics creating a dark tension and uncomfortable nature. This might not sound like a positive thing, but I’d much rather be challenged and engaged by a song than stringed along by it without registering what it’s really all about.
The bridge provides an ideal breakdown, transforming into a country led sound which only goes to show the varying influences that the band take on board when creating their unique style of music.
‘The Gathering’ is accompanied by an intriguing video concept, created by the band themselves, which provides a satirical, yet relevant piece of visual humour to contrast the dark tone of the song.
Overall, there’s a lot more to ‘The Gathering’ than first meets the eye (or ear), so it might take a few listens to really get into, but repeat listeners will be rewarded with the deep subtext that lies beneath the surface. Definitely worth checking out!