L.W.E.D. are a London-based band who are beginning to gather rave reviews for their haunting music. Their lead singer, Andrea, kindly sent me a copy of this demo album (which I believe was recorded in 2002).
On some songs, Andrea's voice sounds almost impossibly fragile and delicate and is accompanied by only the sparsest of electronic backings, producing an unsettling effect. Other songs such as Demon in the Wheels have a fuller sound and a stronger vocal performance echoing bands like Queen Adreena. The stand-out track has to be Horsemilk with its infectious tune balanced by Andrea's almost ethereal vocals.
The band have avoided over-production or drowning out the vocals (2 things which can occur in this genre) to produce perfectly balanced darkwave music that really is as pure and disturbing as a fresh snow fall over an inner city. This mood of unsettling purity is echoed in their CD packaging which features an all-white CD cover with a razorblade taped to it. (The band did actually perform at a benefit to raise awareness of self harm).
I've heard good reports of their live gigs and Andrea has an incredibly striking image. She often wears only torn underwear or boned corsets that further emphasise her extreme thinness --- once again, this image of the distressed Victorian madwoman does remind me of Katie Jane Garside of Queen Adreena. Although their name and image have led to L.W.E.D. being accused of being a freak show, they should not be dismissed so lightly. Andrea has a brilliant voice which is showcased by some great electronic music to produce an unique sound.
NOTE: The band released their debut EP, "White Like Snow" on Something To Listen To Records and they also supported the likes of Psychic TV and Whitehouse. The band also changed their name to Colt.
Originally published in December 2004.