Having been lucky enough to have an early peek at two Liars albums now, I can still feel the skull-rattling shock delivered when ‘Scissor’, the first track to be released from ‘Sisterworld’, suddenly maimed the brain with brutal noise, having lulled it with sparse beginnings. This, the lead-off track from its follow-up, is a very different kind of comeback. Instead of slapping you into attention, it beguiles, subtly shifting in mood and texture, krautrock rhythms and textures oscillating round Angus Andrew’s softly haunted voice as he intones, “I’m running out beyond life”. Not the first time Liars have painted in subtle colours, but unlike the unsettling ambiences of yore, the mood here is lush, almost… soothing.
Teaser videos posted on their website (Andrew stumbling about a studio in a harness, mic-ed up books, mysterious poltergeist activity backed by various tones, bloops and samples) suggest their work on the new record, due out June 4, has been an experimental riot, with Andrew and guitarist Aaron Hemphill having locked themselves away in a remote mountain cabin to write. Their cabin fever leads to our delirious dream, as the track flows smoothly to a climax of odd beauty, the drums picking up the pace through a cloud of fizzing, whirring synths. I can’t wait for more surprises.