Melodrama is the name of the game on Wax Idols latest record. Naturally, we expect this from the post punk goth rockers who’ve written their name on the wall in kohl eyeliner. So the fact that in the face of tragedy they’ve produced their poppiest record to date may surprise a few.

During recording a fire swept through Ghost Ship in Oakland taking the lives of many, a frequent haunt of Wax Idols they lost those close to them and this affected the album deeply. Lyrically fixated on death the ironically named Happy Ending has anything but. Vocalist Hether Fortune’s content swings from the existential ponderings of ‘Belong’ to the deeply personal ‘Scream’ which sees her bellowing the name of a loved one and begging for “just one more chance.” It’s a solid first single and is sure to win them some new fans with its washed out indie hooks and poetry references. This dissonance between the angst of the vocals and the oft-catchy charm of the sound on tracks like ‘Too Late’, which skitter from scuzzy reverb to head-nodding bass and radio friendly riffs at the drop of a hat, is what makes this record so fulfilling to dive inside.

Finale 'Missed Call' is a lonely midnight voicemail. Stripped away is the bands reliance on feedback and what’s left is a raw and revealing ode to love and pain. Hether’s vocals are the star here and as she croons “this ain’t a conversation love, its just one more goodbye,” the cracks in her voice are given room to breathe and let you bathe in her (and likely your) insecurities.

Elsewhere it’s a goth pop dream as Hether wails “I’ve organised my grief by numbers” and poses the delightfully upbeat “everybody loves to hear a killer misanthropic story” which you can’t help but agree with, especially when it sounds this good. The steady beat and 90s influenced riff come at you like a graveside party.

Happy Ending is a record that takes on a lot and while it may take a few listens to draw you in, once it does you’ll be glad you persevered. It’s both a familiar comfort and a new exploration which hints at what Wax Idols are capable of more than any of their albums that came before it.