If you’ve ever gone to any given goth/industrial/EBM club night anywhere in the world, you’ve likely danced to either a Leather Strip song or a Leather Strip remix. Frontman and founder Claus Larsen started Leather Strip thirty years ago and has consistently kept up a diverse and notable musical presence with every release.
This latest EP is a collaboration with electronic artist Autoclav1.1, also known as Tony Young. The opening track, “Chasing Gods,” pairs Claus’s signature chant-like vocal delivery and chord progressions with glitchy rhythms courtesy of Young, who draws influence from IDM as well as industrial music. The arpeggiated synths on “I’m Just A Man Not A Disease” add even more power to its lyrics, which address stereotypes, stigma, and the desire to rise above bigotry. “If There Is A God It’s You” has serious dance floor potential with its rhythms derived from house and trance and its simple but catchy melody. It sounds very much like a classic Leather Strip track with a little extra grit from Autoclav1.1. The last song, “Victory”, really does in fact sound like a victory song and is equal parts hopeful and dark. In the chorus, Larsen sings of rising from fear and proclaims “the victory shines bright.”
While it’s not a political or concept album, the underlying lyrical themes are very fitting for the times we’re living in now and stylistically, it’s a refreshing combination of talents from two pretty different artists. I’ve always been impressed by Claus Larsen’s ability to work with just about anyone and write socially conscious and emotional songs which are just as catchy and club-friendly as they are introspective.
Find Commixture on bandcamp: https://leaetherstrip.bandcamp.com/album/commixture