I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness

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The full-length debut of this Texas band follows their 2003 self-titled five-song EP; a much poppier affair produced by Spoon’s Britt Daniel, with a dose of thunder and lightning, pain and pleasure. Produced this time by Paul Barker (Ministry, Revolting Cocks), the record is more sadness than joy with lonely lyrics and hauntingly echoed guitar persuaded by chorused basslines. The sound is coaxing and familiar, then howling and anguished. Reminiscent of latter-era Talk Talk; with the introspection also comes passion. “Fear Is On Our Side” isn’t trivial or banal, trendy or futile. It’s a testament to our times, our revolutions, and our meaning. It’s timeless, maniacal, and resounding. Darkness and truth.

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I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness is a five-piece dark pop band out of Austin, TX; scene mates include Paul Newman, Windsor for the Derby, and Glorium. But I Love You, formed in 2001 and comprised of singer Christian Goyer, bassist Edward Robert, guitarists Ernest Salaz and Daniel Del Favero, and percussionist Tim White, is not all that predictable, at least if their debut album, Fear Is on Our Side, tells a reliable story. Where the band’s self-titled EP, a five-song dazzler issued in 2003 on the daredevil Emperor Jones label, offered up mildly doleful and semi-danceable indie rock courtesy of Spoon’s Britt Daniel, who produced and helped swirl buzz on the band beyond the city limits, Fear Is on Our Side takes a turn for the seriously, achingly bleak. Echoes of Talk Talk and other visceral, introspective 1980s bands filter through the familiar guitar textures, but the mid-2000s is a new era for intelligent gloominess, and flavoring this brew is an overcharged mindfulness that suggests close attention to recent musical history, especially electronica. Though the group’s output so far suggests a willingness to climb and explore, cynicism would seem to be an enduring I Love You trait. Their recognition of its versatility promises to propel them.

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