Alex Riggen

The House Flies is the name of the side project of the members of the goth act Murnau. This side project is a different endeavour from their main band, as it takes influence from post-punk, goth rock, and deathrock. The first release from this new project is the four-track EP entitled “Glimmer”, which I had a really pleasant experience with, so allow me to dissect it for you.

The first track is entitled Hounds and while I know the inspiration was goth, this track has some really strong post-rock vibes. The dissonant and added harmonies that the guitar plays at intervals (and sometimes in the background) between the synths here are pure gold. The synth line is very exotic and melancholic and the bass line backing it up is a goth-rock dream come true. Moving on to the vocals, they are your perfect mix of compression/throat singing and soft airy head voice. At first, I thought the vocalist was going for a Marilyn Manson approach of predominantly singing with vocal fry, but then I found a merge of multiple styles that brings the right amount of both substance and style to this track. The second track, Sequin, begins with a more thunderous bassline along with distorted guitars and raw-sounding drums which gave me a lot of Sisters Of Mercy nostalgia. The vocals are still highly emotional and show some nasality which is once again part technique-flaunting and part goth aesthetic-conforming. It’s deceptively simple to compose a song such as this one, where the genre is familiarly goth rock and no more gimmicks are to be found, but the music still manages to maintain its uniqueness and memorability. The third track, Blue, begins with a 70s-sounding bass line and then proceeds with the guitars and synths to be a relatively faster/mid-tempo track than the previous ones. The vocals are dreamy and passionate during the verses, which suits the extended synth line and the great bass line behind them sets a foundation that makes the track sound large and very consistent. The fourth and final track, Apple, instantly reminded me of the late Peter Steele with the effects added to the bass guitar. This track is the strongest, in my humble opinion, when it comes to the guitar lines and vocals. I could hear some added percussions that sound like the ones in the previous track, which helped conceive the sound print of the project and the particular style of this EP. 

In conclusion, this project succeeded in paving a new path with a new sound and a different approach from that of Murnau and that’s the best aspect of it. This short but neat project would be the perfect find for any post-punk fan or goth enthusiast who wants a sound that’s reminiscent of Bauhaus, Siouxsie, The Cure, and all the bands of that golden era. Following some similar footsteps of those great classic bands, The House Flies managed to balance being on point in terms of genre and unique in terms of style.