Heartbreaking, rip-your-toenails-out bleakness is all part of Perfume Genius’ charm. There’s also the way he conjures up barely finished sounding songs so stark and intense they make Bright Eyes sound like Black Eyed Peas. It’s clearly catharsis for Mike Hadreas (aka the fragrant clever-clogs behind the music), who sings of death and perversion and has a penchant for appearing bruised and near starvation-skinny in promo shots. But within all the emotional turmoil, there’s a lot for the listener to love: Hadreas’ compelling, tremulous vocals for one, and the haunting nature of his plinky plonky piano skills. A fragile, fucked-up little wonder.
Click here to get your copy of Perfume Genius’ ‘Learning’ from the Rough Trade shop