Psyche

Legacy

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AllMusic Review by

The combination of dark lyrics and synth pop that defines the darkwave movement is too precious for some. To them, the lyrics and dramatic delivery are borderline silly, and nobody with black lipstick can convince them otherwise. It's a shame they'll ignore this wonderful collection of the great Psyche, lovingly put together by the goth-friendly label Metropolis. Singer/songwriter Darrin Huss is the main drive behind Psyche's 20-year career, a career he calls his "imaginary life" in the charming liner notes. With the help of Metropolis he's compiled the band's grandest moments on Legacy, stuffing the disc with 78 minutes of atmospheric melancholy and pacing the set wonderfully. Plenty of songs play up the death and dark to the point no one new is going to be won over, but the band's three top songs are worthy of consideration by all those not threatened by sunlight. "Exhale" has a better construct than Psyche's cottage industry should allow. It's thrilling, twists and turns musically, and should be added to Annie Lennox's dramatic songbook any day now. "Angel Lies Sleeping" is the superb dance number that put the band on the map back in late '80s, but it's the cover of the obscure "Goodbye Horses" that steals the show. Huss and Per Anders Kurenbach -- the other member till he handed his synth duties over to Remi Szyszka in 2001 -- nail the tune, a tune that's most known for Buffalo Bill dancing to it in The Silence of the Lambs. Picking obscure tunes out of serial killer movies, gushing about the band Sparks on their website, and offering up that darkwave is more "imaginary life" than real life are some of the things that make Psyche special and worth hearing. Neglected for too long because they were lumped in with all the lessers, Legacy gives Psyche the props they deserve. It's an easy and portable way to introduce the skeptical to darkwave's greatest treasure and a monolithically important release for the faithful.

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