Spiders in your mind, where there’s flesh there’s flies
Spiders tell you lies, weakness leads them all inside
Swarming in your mind, Feed the fire inside
Drowning in the dark, Pounding of your heart
In the shadowy heart of Bloomington, IN, a spectral project named Twice Dark was birthed by the creative talons of Josh Kreuzman in 2020. With tendrils of darkness unfurling, this unique gothic-industrial experiment has anchored its haunting presence. Dipped in auditory shadows and echoing with the retro resonance of the 1980s music scene, Twice Dark weaves a brooding tapestry of goth, industrial, Electronic Body Music, Italo disco, deathrock, cold wave, and dark wave. Its sound is an eerie melange of dark-tinged music, reaching like a phantom reaching out through a fog of time.
But the layers of Twice Dark run far deeper. Imagine hues of splatterpunk, magical realism, and Art Nouveau bleeding into its sonic landscape, creating an enthralling panorama that mesmerizes and intrigues. Now Kreuzman invokes a new offering to the stormy skies, “Orphans Of The Storm,” a goth darkwave collection of songs reminiscent of Frozen Autumn, Night Sins, Drab Majesty, and Fad Gadget.
Twice Dark, with its riveting melodies and commitment to raising the curtain for emerging talents, stands as more than just an intriguing melodic story—it’s an inspiring beacon within the eerie fog of the Midwest’s goth and industrial music scenes.
The album opens strong with the spooky goth anthem Spiders. This track uses symbolic imagery to communicate the internal struggle one experiences when dealing with personal demons, symbolized as ‘spiders’. These arachnids personify the lies, manipulations, and self-deceits we may harbor within our minds. The term ‘murder of ravens’ encapsulates overwhelming dark thoughts or depression, leading to the feeling of being lovesick, broken, and dying slow. The ‘spiders’ are also presented as entities that destroy one’s life by creating illusions or wasting one’s potential. They can be seen as our insecurities or doubts, feeding off our energy and enthusiasm. The notion of ‘choking on dreams’ suggests suppressed aspirations and unfulfilled desires. The overall tone carries a compelling message of introspection, struggle, and ultimate resilience.
The anthemic Casualty follows, a somber, yet crystalline synth number reflecting on the transient nature of human existence. It conveys a sense of inevitability and acceptance of our mortality. The lyrics emphasize the fleetingness of life and the inescapable reality of death. The repetition of phrases like “We’re not long now for this world” and “No one here gets out alive” reinforces the theme of our limited time on Earth. Ultimately, the song suggests that our lives are transient, and no matter how hard we try, we cannot escape our fate. It urges listeners to contemplate the fragility of life and the inevitability of death.
Orphans of the Storm, a possible reference to the 1921 Lillian Gish film directed by DW Griffith, paints a picture of a deep connection between two individuals who find solace in each other’s presence. The lyrics evoke a sense of longing and search for the other person, symbolized by the metaphor of using a candle to light the way through the vast and gray underground. The singer expresses their devotion and admiration, emphasizing how the other person never lets them down and pulls them up from difficult times, rescuing them from the depths. The lyrics also acknowledge the flaws and demons within themselves, but the assurance is given that they will never abandon each other in the dark moments. They become each other’s guiding light, saving one another from self-destructive tendencies and providing support in times of darkness and conflict.
The next song, the eerie, whispering Ghosts In The Graveyard, creates a chilling and intense atmosphere, depicting a classic scene of supernatural chaos and horror. It’s the perfect Halloween number: the lyrics portray a graveyard overrun by ghosts, ghouls, and zombies, evoking a sense of fear and imminent danger. There is a theme of confrontation and struggle against these menacing forces. There is no escape from this nightmarish reality, as symbolized by the walls breaking down.
Themes of darkness, destruction, and the masks we wear in society take centre stage in The Plague of the Masquerade. It portrays a world where the wounded are healers, and the cursed sight lies behind masks. The lyrics suggest a sense of desperation and inevitability, with references to carving names in blood and drowning in acid rain, symbolizing the destructive nature of our actions and the consequences we face. It hints at the futility of fighting against the gods or the past, as the toll of the future takes its course. There is a recognition of the masquerade we engage in, hiding our true selves beneath layers of illusion and pretense.
The EP is currently out on Bandcamp and soon all streaming platforms. Listen below to this darkwave treasure:
Twice Dark hosts a recurring event in Bloomington known as “Gallow Dance.” Scheduled on the third Friday of each month, Gallow Dance serves as a platform for up-and-coming talent from the Midwest. The lineup has included bands like Palm Ghosts from Nashville, Drekka from Dais Records, Kill Scenes, and The Feral Ghosts, both from Chicago, among others.
In 2022, Twice Dark showcased its curatorial prowess by compiling and releasing “Midwest Gothic.” This collection comprises mostly unsigned bands from the Midwest, demonstrating Twice Dark’s commitment to elevating emerging talent in the goth and industrial music scenes.
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