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A relentless machine gun style beat forms the basis of 'Anti Body', the lead single taken from Gazelle Twin's second record. Other sounds coagulate around it, but that simple beat remains a constant. It starts out as a distant, muted kick drum, before mutating into an aggressive synth melody in the song's final moments. Synthesisers buzz around like flies on a corpse, whilst Elizabeth Bernholz whispers over the top. She doesn't so much sing as spit the lyrics as though disgusted at herself for even uttering them. "When I was fourteen," she says, "I hid in this room / hoping I would sleep / never be exhumed." The macabre and the everyday converge into one nightmarish vision that continues throughout Unflesh.

'Anti Body's violent, claustrophobic imagery could hint at many things, but there is a very palpable sense of entrapment and desire for escape. That escape renders itself as death as Gazelle Twin makes reference to methods of suicide. Despite the subject matter the industrial beat and use of rising synthesisers twists this into track that, in some respects, comes off like the goth-influenced cousin of Factory Floor.

Unflesh is a surprisingly danceable record amidst all the dark beats, and this is thanks to the process Bernholz undertook whilst writing the record. After releasing debut The Entire City, Bernholz approached the follow-up with live performance as a key driver. This approach has resulted in an incredibly physical record (both tonally and lyrically) with a greater focus on percussion.

Huge industrial beats characterise many of the songs on the record, casting an antagonistic, almost oppressive tone. The title track utilises a distorted, militaristic stomp under an abrasive, buzzing synth, whilst 'GUTS' and 'Still Life' seem to sample the clang of machinery. These heavier, darker beats are offset with lightness from some of the synthesiser sounds. 'Unflesh' features a middle eight that's almost euphoric given what has proceeded it, but after a brief glimpse of Bernholz' breathy high notes we're dragged back down into the horror captured in the refrain "it's coming at me / it's coming at me." Coupled with a rising, almost wailing synth it's as though the hands of the undead grasp at your extremities, pulling you down with them.

'Child' might open with looming, oppressive bass rattles, but it quickly gives way to ethereal chords that whistle like the wind. Sitting midway through the record it's almost an idyll of calm, but even here at the quiet centre it is hard to fully relax. A chorus of voices surrounds the listener in the opening moments, offering up images of ritualistic cults. Bernholz' vocal meanwhile is pitched against just the whistling wind and distant voices, as though she's on the outside looking in. Like much of Unflesh there's a recognisable otherness. The reference points are all familiar - but there's something below the surface you can't quite put your finger on.

This is most apparent in 'Premonition', which immediately follows 'Child'. On the surface it's an almost charming electronic lullaby, echoing chimes bounce in and out of the track, with a rising and falling synthesiser. There's no beat and little bass, which puts the focus on Gazelle Twin's whispered vocal. Then the truth of the song reveals itself. 'Premonition' is about a miscarriage, knowing this suddenly throws a focus on to the musical elements you perhaps didn't notice first time. Those chimes, echoing as if being played in a bare room, the rather monotone, dehumanised structure of the song itself, and the lyrics themselves reveal an anguish that the singer hasn't even been able to comprehend.

As you dig further into Unflesh's lyrical themes it begins to reveal an emotional core that's desperate for catharsis. Bernholz' lyrics can sometimes tend towards the obtuse, but everything you need to understand the record is made available to you; whether that's through a particular phrase, or the music itself. 'Premonition' excels because it only says what it needs to. It doesn't try to be stirring, its sparsity reflects that of the subject's emotional state - consumed by an overwhelming sense of emptiness. Those lullaby chimes, once charming, now chilling.

The cathartic streak also comes from the record's more physical, industrial moments. Album highlights, 'Belly of the Beast' and 'Still Life' in particular, utilise this aggressive tone in different ways. 'Belly of the Beast' conjures up a confrontational stance, with a four to the floor beat and Bernholz' whisper twisting into a snarl of "I'll beat them all at their at own game, bite the hands and the fingers that feed." Of all the tracks on Unflesh, this is the most primitive and also the most liberating. Its obsession with anatomy (which follows a precedent throughout the record but take it to it's logical conclusion) and its thrilling chorus of glitchy percussion, a supermarket checkout scanner and abrasive synthesisers is hugely effective. Even hearing this on headphones makes you want to engage with this record on a more primitive level. It's infectious and before you know it limbs are flying, you've broken a sweat and you're freeing yourself of that darkness.

'Still Life' meanwhile, opens with an ominous bass riff and more ritualistic chanting. But the song's killer hook, a distorted male voice that yells throughout the track. It's the perfect counter to Bernholz' vocal and lends an antagonistic tone to the song. Here though there's a sense of triumph as well. There's lines about killing demons and shedding dead skin. A sense of putting the past behind you and stepping out new. In interviews Bernholz has acknowledged that she suffers from anxiety and phobias brought on by her childhood. Music, for her is a cathartic process and 'Still Life' almost seems to be her directly addressing this on record. It's really the only way Unflesh could end, acknowledging the process that brought the artist to this point, to this record and paving the way for the next phase.

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