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Mark E Moon – Resist

by François Zappa

Sometimes, in this life, the only thing you can do is resist. Mark E Moon, the band led by Mark Sayle and Phil Reynolds, must think the same as they have chosen Resist as the title of their latest album. Since we interviewed them a few years ago for the edition of W-Fest that was cancelled due to the pandemic, the band from the Isle of Man has resisted and grown, both literally with the addition of new members and composition-wise. Their new albums is an authentic “pièce de résistance”, that has been released by Cold Transmission and it is available on CD, digital and vinyl. I have reviewed the vinyl version but the CD one comes with a extra track and a demo.

Resist is a bit more electronic than his previous works, a bit less dark and more danceable. Although it deals with quite dark themes such as loss and mental anguish, the music is less oppressive than in works such as Old Blood and some of its tracks would be perfect for dancing in our favorite dark disco.

A proof of this is the opening “Daemons” a powerful track in which Mark sings with a lot of strength and rage. The presence of Shelly Rourke on second voice really elevates the song, giving a little more luminosity to the composition. Resist‘s songs, in general, are quite catchy with choruses that will stick in your head, as you can already check in the first track, but also in “Stay”, an original composition that reminds me of eighties Japan with its keyboards and atmosphere. Mark sings again with passion in one of the peaks of the album. Although “Blind”, for me, is the best track on Resist, with the sophistication, magnetism and mystery that a lot of music from the 80s have. Mark is really fantastic, as is Shelly Rourke on backing vocals. In “Vertigo” Shelly takes the lead in another intense and passionate song in which she really shines. Before commenting on “Dark Love”, it should be noted that the band had another album ready to be released, entitled Pop Noir!, but it ended up shelved to be released as a fourth album. Of all the songs included only “Dark Love” has ended up on Mark E Moon‘s third album, and we will have to wait for their fourth album to be able to listen to the rest… “Dark Love” is a danceable track with an impresive performance by Mark and a very catchy chorus. Although the keyboards give it a certain dramatism, it is a clear track for the dancefloor, like “Closure”, also very danceable and very catchy, less dark and with a quite commercial sound.

The album continues with a mid-tempo entitled “Crystal”. Althought the danceable tracks are quite good, I think that in these kind of songs is where Mark really stands out. Here he sings tenderly, as if a note too high could shatter the crystal that gives the title to the song. Resist comes to an end with the intense “Hearts Keep Bleeding” a bit epic track thanks to the drums, one more time with a great work on vocals, and a tremendous final solo.

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