P.S. I Love You, Death Dreams

Ian Gittins

By Ian Gittins

on 05.23.12 in Reviews

The Kingston, Ontario, duo P.S. I Love You sound versed less in musical theory than chaos theory. They major in a strain of volatile, dense noise-pop that sounds constantly on the verge of falling in on itself, and Death Dreams, their second full-length, finds them determinedly upping the freneticism. Drummer Benjamin Nelson appears to take his musical cue from Animal from the Muppets but the band’s fulcrum is Paul Saulnier, who layers fuzzy thrash guitar, erratic organ blurts and semi-feral vocals into one reverb-laden noise-ball and fires it out of a canon with the volume knob cranked.

Volatile and dense noise-pop

Augmenting the all-consuming air of fertile chaos is the fact that Saulnier is a wilfully obscurantist vocalist, hiccupping and swallowing his words until they are almost entirely unintelligible. “Sentimental Dishes” is yelped not unlike Bryan Ferry on Roxy’s Pyjamarama and appears to be about trying to avoid doing the washing up: on “Don’t Go” — where he claims to be a love freak with a gun in his hand, whatever that means — he approaches something like a hyperventilating meltdown. Yet Death Dreams is strongest when a degree of discipline undercuts the anarchy: the strident “Princess Towers,” which recalls the twitchy urgency of early PiL. Nothing makes chaos go over smooth like a judicious pinch of order.