Album Review Alice Glass - PREY//IV3-5 Stars
An album defined by a sort of constant itchiness, a wish to rid itself of trauma by occupying it so fully.
Haunted music box twinkles; punishing industrial throbs; glitching, limit-pushing electronics. Before you even begin to dissect the lyrical content (not-so-spoiler alert: it’s bleak) of Alice Glass’ solo debut, there’s little that makes for easy or comfortable listening within the claustrophobic, unsettling world of ‘PREY//IV’. It should come as little surprise both to fans of her work in Crystal Castles - the early ‘10s flag-bearers of the ‘indie sleaze’ era that’s found itself somehow back in the cultural lexicon - and of those who’ve followed her story since leaving the group in 2014, later accusing bandmate Ethan Kath of continued sexual, physical and mental abuse. ‘PREY//IV’ does not shy away from Alice’s story; instead, its imagery is violent and visceral, with portraits of isolation (‘PINNED BENEATH LIMBS’) and self harm (‘BABY TEETH’) riddled throughout an album defined by a sort of constant itchiness, a wish to rid itself of trauma by occupying it so fully. Much has already been made of the lyrics to ‘FAIR GAME’, which repurpose direct quotes from Kath - “I’m so embarrassed for you / I’m so embarrassed for us”, but the scars of the relationship are to be seen all across the record. You just hope that ‘PREY//IV’ has gone some way to exorcising them.
Smashing The Glass Ceiling: Alice Glass
Wrestling a sense of identity back following her deeply troubled time in Crystal Castles, Alice Glass’ solo debut ‘PREY//IV’ finds the singer finally in control of her own destiny.
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