CHVRCHES ‘Screen Violence’ Review – Horror Never Sounded So Euphoric

The first time I heard of CHVRCHES was in 2016 through video games of all things: “Warning Call,” the soaring theme for Mirror’s Edge Catalyst. I was one of, like, 10 people who wanted a sequel to Mirror’s Edge so this kind of stuck. Then, while cruising past some fools in Forza Horizon 3, on came “Clearest Blue” and that Depeche Mode-style beat drop poured in like confetti. And I haven’t even gotten to their fiery collaboration with Paramore’s Hayley Williams.

As a band, I never knew what to make of Chvrches. I only liked 3 songs off of Love Is Dead but was otherwise infatuated with their elegant covers. Once I heard the tie-in song to Death Stranding, I started listening INTENTLY. (Any group that can make Hideo Kojima cry has my undivided attention.)

The moves they made in the leadup to their newest album definitely piqued my interest. The Cure’s Robert Smith lends some guest vocals on the LP, plus a dual collaboration with horror maestro-turned-composer John Carpenter. Now THOSE are some power moves for a Scottish pop-trio you thought you had figured out by now. With Screen Violence, Chvrches defies barriers and expectations, traversing a sci-fi horror synth-scape with the sunny optimism of a John Hughes movie. It’s no wonder they turn to film over video games for inspiration. Their sound has blossomed into something unbearably cinematic.

Continue reading

Halo Infinite – 343’s Redemption Song

Last month we finally, FINALLY, got our long-awaited peek at some Halo Infinite gameplay. I gotta say, I like what I’m seeing: that familiar, winding ring curving into the strata, a taste of some exciting new guns, a freakin’ grappling hook addition, and, best of all, Brutes throwing grunts at you like the most insane kamikaze EVER. At the onset, it appears developer 343 Industries has taken much of the criticisms of previous Halo entries to heart and put their money where their mouth is to deliver a promising return to form for the series. That tribal-heavy score, my dude, had me shedding nostalgic tears.

But color me cautiously optimistic. Because we’ve been here before. Continue reading