Monday, January 26, 2009

The Sisters of Mercy - Some Girls Wander By Mistake

8/10
This is a compilation album of singles and EPs released during the band’s early years, and, as can be expected, it doesn’t exactly have a consistent sound. It’s also not in chronological order, as the band’s first single, “Watch,” is buried deep into the album, and you don’t really get much of a feel for the band’s evolution as a result. Still, much of the material is quite good, and even some of the songs that aren’t so good are at least interesting, such as the aforementioned single (which has Gary Marx on vocals and Andrew Eldritch on drums – yes, it’s a Sisters track with actual drums), and some of the other more punk-based tracks, such as the cover of the Stooges’ “1969”. Standout tracks include the atmospheric instrumental “Phantom” and a great cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter”.

Other interesting tracks include the extended version of Temple of Love, which would have been awesome if they hadn’t gone the easy route of having the second, “extended” half sound almost exactly the same as the first, like a late-era Vital Remains song. Several songs, like “Kiss the Carpet” and “Fix,” aren’t instrumentals but seem like it at first, with Eldritch’s vocals not coming in until a minute or two. This is kind of a low 8, considering that Doktor Avalanche frequently sounds more like castanets than actual drums and that some of the lesser songs are practically interchangeable, but I can still recommend it.

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