Genre: Neofolk / Nihilist Suicide Pop
02 Bastard Angel
03 I Walk The (Dead)Line
04 The Shining Circle
05 My Kingdom For A Horse
06 Jesus Died In Las Vegas
08 Love Through Vaseline
09 Ragged Bed
10 No Kisses On The Mouth
11 Redemption Or Myself
Recently a fellow journalist stopped writing for Heathen Harvest because his time was too much taken up by other things. Not in the least his personal band. But, he still had a few unreviewed releases. These were send to me. One of those was this release. Spiritual Front's highly acclaimed Armageddon Gigolo. I just couldn't resist turning the CD on, and indulge myself. While I laid there listening to this CD, my mom came entered the livingroom, and she went like: "This is cool stuff!" Luckily she didn't hear any of the sexual messages, because I believe she wouldn't really like that.
Right from the first things, the erotica is around. The album name is a dead give away already. Then the first song: Slave. But it's not all erotica mind you. Simone is also a slave to his "childhood and hidden fears". All the erotic messages are there in such a way that it's not emphasized. As it should be. Sex is just a normal feature of live, be it heterosexuality, homosexuality or masturbation. In this context, the sentence "you'll leave me bleeding on the floor" (from 'Bastard Angel') gets quite a different load than when it would be sung in a context of depression and stuff.
But, on to the music. Spiritual Front became really well known thanks to their split with the well known act Ordo Rosarius Equilibrio; Satyriasis. This was also my first encounter with Spiritual Front's selfcalled "Nihilist Suicide Pop", and I was blown away. But no matter how good their contributions to that split release were, Armageddon Gigolo takes it up another level. There's far more variety in the tunes. The two really different styles in which Simone sings are around again. The one being normal singing, the other being a really deep and dark style. This alternation is especially present in 'My Kingdom For A Horse' and 'Cruisin'.
After this song, the very poppy song 'Jesus Died In Las Vegas'. This is a very well constructed song, like all the others. Pianoplay, percussion, guitar and Simone's captivating voice. Lyrically, the best sentence in this song must be the last one, which is repeated in the end of the song. "Nothing is more contagious than sin". Which is true, if you believe in sins that is. I wonder how the guys of Spiritual Front regard this matter themselves. What is sin and what is not? They play around a lot with sexual context and needles, and tag their music nihilist and suicide.
Lets get back to the erotica, because it's fascinating and interesting. 'Love Through Vaseline' is one of the sexiest and dirtiest song I've ever heard. Not that there's a lot of moaning and stuff, but simply because of the lyrics and feeling of the whole song. I wonder what the person who threw the ORE+SF split in the garbage for being too sexual would do with this album. Which also poses the question from which perspective one judges to music. Just the music, or also the lyrics, the coverart and everything around it?
Armageddon Gigolo is one of the best releases that have invaded my ears the last months. Musically everything is just right, and the overall theme is highly interesting and down to earth in a way. This is not music for the close minded people. My only point of criticism is that Spiritual Front should pay some more attention to the grammar and pronunciation of their lyrics. I can imagine it can cause some confusion and annoyance for some listeners the way it is now. For the rest, this is an album absolutely necessary in your collection. You will not be disappointed. My word on it.