UK-based musician Steven Whiley makes “Cthulu-wave” as Myths and Monsters. What is “Cthulu-wave” you ask? Well if you know who Cthulu is then you wouldn’t be asking that question. HP Lovecraft’s most famous creation, Cthulu is a cosmic entity that is part octopus, dragon, and in a somewhat human form. He’s worshiped by cultists and not someone you want to wake up next to after a long night at the pub(or maybe you would, you freak.)
Myths and Monsters sound is heavily melodic electronic music, towing the line between Gothic, heavy synth, and synth pop. Whiley wants to share the psychic trauma horror movies laid on him as a kid through songs and he does it well. His latest is Cecaelia and it’s a fantastic run through those classic horror scores of 80s past, mixing creepy vibes, pop melodies, and 8-bit touches always with melody front and center.
“Calaca” opens things with a big and spacious synth track. An electro groove carries the song along with a very brassy and melodic synth line. I could almost hear this as opening theme music to some 80s television gem. It’s catchy, man. “Cecaelia” brings the brooding, Gothic tones. I’m reminded of the band The Night Terrors, a band led by theremin and synth. No theremin here, but that ghostly spirit is there. “II manichino” is all bubbly synth pop and neon mall vibes and I’m here for it.
Elsewhere “Closing In” is all glitchy electronica with touches of NES video game soundtracks thrown in for good measure. Intentional or not, it works. “Porcelain dolls” is all Casio dreams and late night walks while “TV tower” has a touch of Tangerine Dream in its subtle electronic pulse. “Chosen” closes out the album with optimistic drones and what sounds to me like a pixelated sunrise over Myths and Monsters sonic landscape.
Cecaelia is a lovely drop into synth-heavy music. An album filled with engaging melodies and classic buzzing tones that lock into both nightmares and daydreams. Balancing out the creepy with just the right amount of dreamy. A synthetic nostalgia fever dream.
Myths and Monsters’ Cecaelia is out now. Hit up their Bandcamp and dive in, if you dare.