Chvrches, the Scottish trio of vocalist Lauren Mayberry, guitarist Iain Cook,
and keyboardist Martin Doherty, were yet another derivative band in the style
of synth-pop of the 1980s to ride the revival of that genre in the 2010s,
following the success of Knife and many others.
The singles and EP collected on
The Bones of What You Believe (Virgin, 2013)
exceled at imitation.
The Mother We Share evokes early Madonna.
Giorgio Moroder's disco-music is resurrected in We Sink and Science/Visions (the beat of I Feel Love coupled with the ferocity of the Sisters Of Mercy).
Tether boasts thundering Pet Shop Boys-ian grandeur.
Recover is an electronic power-ballad a` la dance-pop of that era.
Every Open Eye (2015) is a faithful copy of the debut, which in turn
was a faithful copy of synth-pop of the 1980s, so it is no surprise that
Clearest Blue sounds like Depeche Mode's Just Can't Get Enough.
Leave a Trace is not much more original.
The ballad Down Side of Me is at least atmospheric.
Their arsenal of musical tricks is very limited.
Love is Dead (2018), buried in the maximalist
production of Greg Kurstin (producer for Adele, Pink and Sia),
is again a faithful imitation of their first album
Graffiti is almost a remix of The Mother We Share.
Songs like Never Say Die and
are the quintessence of "formulaic".
The thumping Graves tries in vain to repeat the trick of Clearest Blue.
The duet My Enemy wastes the voice of the National's Matt Berninger.
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