We all have this image of “romantic comedy love” embedded in our minds – two people meet, fell for each other and then live a happy life. They do have their ups and downs, but still they manage to appreciate all those little moments that create their relationship. But this is only one of many faces of love. What if it becomes an obsession? So strong that you begin hurting the very people you love. If you’d like to know what it feels like, then I invite you to the nocturnal and depressing realm of FAUNTLET – a trio from Bucharest who released their debut “Fauna of the Heart Flora From Beyond”.
RELEASE DATE: 03 January 2014 | LABEL: Independent
It is hard to precisely describe the musical style of Faunlet. They write music which is a sophisticated mixture of shoegaze, goth and depression. If I was to compare their debut to anything, just to give you a better look, it would be a merge of True Widow and The Twilight Sad with a pinch of post-rock. Although Faunlet is a trio, they manage to create spacious and engaging musical landspaces. Despite the fact that sometimes tracks are a bit weirdly composed with some strange transitions, it doesn’t really disturb the listening and the album sounds like a coherent whole. It has its stronger moments like “The Boy Is Still Missing” which rushes forward in a Blonde Redhead-ish manner, but also oddly beautiful ones like “The Treehouse” with a depressingly tearjerking piano.
However music mostly acts as a powerful background, because without a doubt, these are lyrics and Peter’s Robert Smith-ish voice that make this album. Peter has a specific manner of describing a dark and sexualized world, full of death and debaucheries. He creates a reality which possesses some reminiscences of ancient Greek tragedy adapted into contemporary times, inhabited by murderers, madmen, reprobates and brutal lovers. However, contrary to Greece, Faunlet’s world is a godless one. People are left alone to be digested by madness and moral decay, bathed in blood and “cum, sweat and tears”. This is an album about humans living in a dehumanized world and about their failed attempts to live a normal life. They are scared and full of flaws, but carrying love on their mouth, just like the person on the artwork. There are however no happy endings and everything seems to be determined by a fatal fortune. People like “the poet and the whore” are trying to escape the overwhelming reality by deeply emotional, raw sex, which despite the love between these two, is still a bitter experience. The rest of inhabitants of this hopeless and dark place just give themselves in to despair which slowly but surely devours them.
What is the biggest irony of this album is that all that despair, murders and blood are the result of love. Love! The feeling of butterflies in stomach being slowly dissolved by acids leaving a pain deep inside that cannot be healed. Never was love presented so bitterly and pessimistically and sang about in such a haunting way, as Peter does. His voice reflects all the aspects of suffering that Faunlet present in their music. A lot of you might not like it though. Peter swears a lot, especially when he describes sex. All in all: “I am a human being, so nothing human is strange to me”. This makes his feelings and the world he tries to depict authentic ones. And such authenticity may scare off some people.
There is also something strange in Peter’s voice that actually made me want to live for some time like people he sings about. It is something kind of desirable to find yourself on the edge of madness, so that you can appreciate all these small things and moments later. And this album makes you visit these edges. This almost hourly piece of music is like a crash course in being depressed, hopeless and desperate, but unable to make a change.
A little curiosity for the end – faunlet is a male equivalent to a nymphet, a term created by a writer Vladimir Nabokov to describe an attractive girl in her pubescence. Seems like Faunlet love to shock in a subtle way, still remaining authentic. Their debut “Fauna of the Heart Flora From Beyond” is definitely the most emotional album of this year for now. I really can’t wait for another record and another occasion to visit the darkest corners of human brain.