Having begun life as a bedroom project for then Southampton-based Nicholas Wood to experiment with ideas around minimal electronica and shoegaze, The KVB has grown with partner and collaborator Kat Day. The now Berlin-based productive pair have released four albums of woozy and immersive anthems since 2010. ‘Of Desire’ is The KVB’s most fully formed record to date, taking in influences such as Death In Vegas, Scott Walker and Roxy Music to create something that is at once familiar and yet inventive and original. Steeped in musical history, it’s an album that hums with devotion and captures a band ready to emerge from the underground and embrace an ever-growing audience. “Being able to produce from home meant we weren’t restricted.” Wood says remembering The KVB’s early days. Many of the songs on ‘Of Desire’ date back to these earliest bedroom recordings, including lead single ‘In Deep’. “It’s about longing,” he adds of a song powered by a motorik beat and distorted blasts of icy guitars.” There’s definitely a romantic undercurrent to the record.”
Now Berlin-based duo The KVB land on Geoff Barrow’s Invada label for the first in a series of releases. Mirror Being differs from most releases from The KVB as the pair’s deep set vocals, a key component of their sound, are largely absent from the 10 tracks but their reverb soaked mastery of guitars and analogue gear is still very much evident throughout.
The latest release for The KVB comes via Ample Play, a London label that’s best known for releasing the music of indie rockers Cornershop. The two-track Run Away EP sees the duo on form once again, with more curtailing synths, straitlaced drums and vocals clear as mud. Both tracks on the EP are somewhat contrasting, the title track being dancey and melodic, while “436” is a grungier version of sounds you could expect from Tropic Of Cancer or HTRK.
London-based “dark wave” duo The KVB are a productive lot. Somewhat remarkably, this is their sixth album since 2011. It further explores there trademark distant, discordant, murky sound, blending barely-audible vocals and shoegaze guitars with fuzzy tones, clandestine moods and atmospheric grooves. While they can do full-throttle noise – see the growling “Dominance/Submission” and “Something Inside”, which push reverb and multi-layered guitars to their limits – they’re actually at their best when exploring less intense pastures. There’s much of this on Minus One, with the wide-eyed “Passing By”, dreamy “Endless” and clandestine “Kill The Lights” standing out.
Cititrax presents remixes for The KVB by Regis, Shifted, Silent Servant, In Aeternam Vale and Worn.