Alone 1980 works in the realm of the classic horror synth soundtrack. It’s not necessarily a new thing, the imagined soundtrack. But in order to do it right and keep someone like me engaged you have to commit fully. If you’re going to make sickly, claustrophobic songs that could fit right into a trashy, B-movie horror flick that may have played on USA Up All Night, you need to go all in. You need to put me into that world, otherwise I’m calling you out. I’m saying “I don’t buy it.”
With Alone 1980, I buy it.
The work of Alone 1980 commits to the world of the sleazy synth score. The slow crawl of analog breath burns the back of your neck when you listen to albums like Sleepwalker, Abyss, and Time. The melancholy wave of melody intertwines with dread and remorse on these records. The spirit of Carpenter, Goblin, Rizzati, and Frizzi walk amongst these tracks and anoint them with their brand musical terror.
To say Alone 1980 is a prolific musical project is an understatement. Starting with EP in August of 2018, this heavy synth project has released 3 full-length albums starting in October of 2018. On April 6th Alone 1980 dropped album number four, the dark and mysterious Beyond. This newest long player continues the trend of heavy synth dread and makes for an engaging listen.
Beyond takes us on a journey thru 16 dark and gorgeous electronic tracks. Songs range from the macabre to the ethereal. “Entering The City” and “Downtown/Dead Zone” have a feverish chill to them. They give off serious Carpenter and Goblin vibes. On the other hand, “The UFO Club” has a very Kyle Dixon/Michael Stein feel. On the opposite end of the spectrum, “Lounge of Ghouls” wavers on the cusp of insanity. It buzzes and wheezes with malcontent, in the best sickly way possible. “Final Fight/Leaving The City” closes the album. It’s over six minutes of slow building synth. A monolithic work of epic analog proportions.
What do I look for in an album? I want to be engaged. I want the music to pull me into its world and throw me around the room a bit. Is there a narrative here? I’m sure there was one to which Alone 1980 wrote to, but that narrative doesn’t mean much to me. Does Beyond pull me into its sonic dread and keep me engaged for its run time? Absolutely. Alone 1980, much like the excellent Repeated Viewing and Slasher Film Festival Strategy, does the horror score vibe perfectly. When I hit play I’m in that world. What more can you ask for?
7.9 out of 10