Ask the DJ: Living Dead Girl – Top 10 Sinister Songs w/ Unique Electronic Instrumentation & Style

14 September 2016 by

Living Dead Girl are a multi-instrumental two piece who produce layered, atmospheric electronica with a dark twist. Jonno Lloyd (guitar/bass/synth/programming/backing vocals) and Jessica English (lead vocals/synth/piano/programming) merge their unique styles effortlessly to create industrial strength pop with a delicate charm.

“As a band we’ve always had a shared interest in the contrast between beauty and darkness. This over time drew us to the style that we write in, which we’ve always referred to as Dark Electronic Pop. We see this not so much as a genre but a set of core principals, and one we’ve stuck with from our early demos to our latest single, ‘Autumn‘.

“We’ve put together a playlist of some of our favourite artists and songs that share these principals, songs that can be sinister and foreboding but still offer melody, harmony and undeniable pop sensibilities, all wrapped up in unique electronic instrumentation and style.”

1. Ladytron – ‘Soft Power’

Jonno: Standing waiting for Nine Inch Nails to come on at Brixton Academy, (The Carling Academy Brixton back then) Ladytron came on and kickstarted my love of electronic music. ‘Soft Power’ grabbed my attention as much that night as it still does now, it’s sinister and beautiful at the same time, wrapped in gorgeous fuzzed up electronics.

2. Lark – ‘Around Swings’

Jonno: I can’t even remember how I came to hear Lark, but everything they did clicked right away. Unquestionably unique, creative with their electronics in every single song and always powerfully concise with their songwriting.

3. ShirleySaid – ‘Merry-Go-Round’

Jonno: I’m really glad this is a video playlist for this one, the music video for this song is fantastic and fits the song so perfectly you couldn’t ask for better. The way ShirleySaid are able to do so much with so little for this song is incredible and still gets me when I listen to it now, the feel that synthesizer and subtle guitar line can give you (and all underpinning that great melody) is fantastic.

We’ve both been blown away by this band and are really proud to be sharing a stage with these guys at our launch gig on Friday 16th September at the Zigfrid von Underbelly.

4. The Knife – ‘Heartbeats’

Jess: The unique vocals are so great in this song. I love the very powerful raw energy that also instantly makes you want to move. I really dig the mood this song creates from the mix of slick electronics and emotive vocals.

5. How To Destroy Angels – ‘Ice Age’

Jonno: With the two of us both being such big Nine Inch Nails fans it was exciting to hear a new project coming from Trent Reznor but in a different style, this one more electronic but obscure at the same time.

Although still thoroughly Nine Inch Nails there are some really new and exciting moments all over their debut album, Welcome Oblivion, ‘Ice Age’ being one of our favourites.

6. Kavinsky – ‘Nightcall’

Jess: I first heard this song watching the film, Drive. I’d never heard anything like this before. I love how simple this song is, yet it keeps your interest effortlessly. It feels instantly nostalgic too. There’s a nice contrast between the ominous verse and more hopeful chorus. This definitely had an effect on the way our song ‘Autumn’ was structured.

7. Grimes – ‘Oblivion’

Jonno: Another great video for this playlist, Grimes’ music video pairs together as much modern masculine imagery as possible with a song that describes the sad reality of a woman struggling to have any kind of relationship with men after an assault. There’s real depth to this song within its lyrics and sense of mood, at the same time it’s undeniably pop, with fantastic electronics and production. Years on, still so, so good.

8. Kubalove – ‘Dangerous’

Jonno: Catchy, danceable and sinister. What more could you ask for. I was lucky enough to catch Kubalove live a couple of years ago and they grabbed me right away with their sound, I’ve kept coming back since for those hooks and straight-up great modern synth-pop. Really looking forward to whatever’s next from them.

9. Björk – ‘An Echo, A Stain’

Jonno: Björk at her most intimate, haunting and beautiful. Sat about halfway through her album, Vespertine, Björk takes the pop instrumentation and hooks from the album and turns it all on its head. Everything slows down, the instruments bleed into each other with an unsettling dissonance and Bjork finishes everything off with a deeply moving and dark vocal line.

Intricate and still effortlessly beautiful.

10. Depeche Mode – ‘Halo’

Jonno: Such an important one for me, Halo is one of the first Depeche Mode tracks I heard, and one that resonated with me so strongly. It was definitely involved in myself starting to create electronic music and I still hold it as a high-water mark to this day. Great Dark Electronic Pop.

‘Autumn’ is out on September 16th, following on from Living Dead Girl’s ‘Skylines’ debut.

Single Launch Party
September 16 – The Zigfrid von Underbelly

Living Dead Girl - Autumn

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