Seemingly every time an obscure release from decades past gets afforded a new lease on life via a reissue, it gets branded with the “lost classic” tag. While this gets tiring to anyone trying to keep up with all of the music coming out, sometimes one of these releases seriously makes you wonder why it was lost in the first place. Ashrae Fax released a few homemade CD-r’s during the late ’90s/early ’00s, but broke up after recording this album, which was released as a CD-r in 2003 and is now finally being released on vinyl. Apparently before the vinyl reissue, this album was even available as a free download on Bandcamp for a while. For once, here is a case of an album that seems too good to languish in obscurity and truly deserves another shot at immortalization.
Supposedly earlier Ashrae Fax recordingss were more noisy, but this one nails an early ’80s post-punk new wave goth-rock sound, with early Cocteau Twins and Siouxsie & The Banshees coming to mind, but perhaps not as gloomy. Soaring vocals, strong guitar and synth melodies, and sturdy drum machine beats. Each side of the record opens with a minute of bassy drone and industrial noise, respectively, but the remaining 6 tracks are just perfect goth/post-punk. Maybe this sort of thing wasn’t in vogue 10 years ago, but now it just sounds timeless. Regardless of when it came out or how trendy it may or may not have been, it’s just seriously good and worth hearing.