1919

REVIEW – 1919

1919 – Bloodline (Westworld Recordings)

Genre – Punk / goth rock

1919 formed in December 1980 in Bradford and set about recording heavy, melodic, intense dance music with no frills and pretentions, and fast became an early contributor to what became the Goth genre.

(Gods and Alchoves) 1919 had chart success with the singles Caged, Repulsion and Cry Wolf as well as the 1984 LP Machine, and recorded two Peel Sessions, before the band went their separate ways.

In 2014, founding guitarist Mark Tighe attempted to reform the band, recruiting Rio Goldhammer from the Leeds underground scene to perform vocals and (initially) bass, before original drummer Mick Reed returned in 2015. With the band’s core reunited, the “’Madness Continues’ Sessions” live album quickly emerged, along with the self-released Death Note EP.

Two European tours and a host of festival appearances later, the band signed a deal with Westworld Recordings in 2016 to release a new album, Bloodline.

Opening with the title track, 1919 deliver a raw, venomous start to the album that’s thick with the dirt of the Sex Pistols. Mick Reed’s vocals have a rough edge to them that echo the snarl of Johnny Rotten, and paired with mentions of Jubilee parades, Bloodline has a distinct 1976 vibe.

The raw sonic opening of the album diffuses with Inquest, as a dancier guitar rock approach takes shape, but the sound is still overlaid with a mix of snarling vocals and a chorus of ‘we’re bleeding out.’

Retrograde and Legacy sees 1919 bring their goth rock approach to the table. Reed’s raw, punk snarl has been toned down, it’s not as aggressive and the overall sound of the band is much more polished, more in keeping with PiL than the Pistols. Both tracks, like Zeitgeist which precedes them, are slow, but filled with big electric sounds that will pair effortlessly with a smoke machine at 1919’s live shows.

Disassociation and Waiting For God sees 1919 up the anti with a change in leadership. For the bulk of Bloodline, it’s Reed leading the charge, but these tracks see him battle the big sounds of his band for centre stage. These jolty goth rock numbers have all the haunting ingredients of dancie rock numbers, containing many of the sounds that made this music so popular thirty years ago.

Bloodline will make you want to dig through your old records, dust off The Cure, Bauchaus and Killing Joke. It will make you fall in love with the punk / goth crossover again and it will definitely get your feet moving.

RUSHONROCK RATED – 9/10 The streets could tell a story!

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Northumbria University Journalism graduate, rock and roll enthusiast and co-editor of RUSHONROCK.com.

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