Radar Band Of The Week No:88 – Light Asylum

light asylum

Go! Tell! The man! We are freedom fighters! Fuck ’em! We are taking our freedom back in our hands! No more, man! No more!” What’s that about new bands having nothing to say? Meet these two electronic punks from Brooklyn, who – as these lines from ‘IPC’, their recent free download and the best song on their debut album, attest – have lots to say. They’re all visceral aggression over filthy-sexy, propulsive, minimal synths and Suicide drums. Importantly, they can also write great pop songs.

They’re not exuberance over craft. They’re both. “We want people to be able to see themselves in the songs,” super-charismatic singer and keyboardist Shannon Funchess says. “And we want the songs to speak to people.” Around 2007, Shannon was putting together music under the Light Asylum name with a variety of people, “but they all wanted to act like ‘producers’. And I was like, ‘Nah, I want to do my own stuff.’” She got into a splitter van for a month-long DIY tour with Bruno Coviello, a studio musician then getting his first taste of playing live with his own Bruno And The Dreamies.

“And we realised we loved a lot of the same stuff,” he says. “The first band that we bonded over was [obscure ’80s darkwavers] Clan Of Xymox. I love them, and I was like, ‘Wow, I when Shannon returned from touring with !!! (she’s a live member) and booked some shows that basically the set.” It’s testament to the conjured that down the line, on the debut album. Make no mistake: ‘Light Asylum’ is one of the most exciting-sounding debuts of 2012. And that’s before we even get to the live shows.
Liam Cash

Need To Know

Based: Brooklyn
For Fans Of: Crystal Castles, Suicide
Buy It Now: ‘Light Asylum’ is out physically on June 11; the ‘In Tension’ EP should keep you going until then
Believe It Or Not: The first few shows were filled out with a cover of Joy Division’s ‘Dead Souls’

This article originally appeared in the April 28th issue of NME

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