Before post-punk and darkwave became, surprisingly, a common place for so many new generation bands, some pioneers of the Barcelona gothic scene already anticipated this resurgence, seeing that sooner or later the darker drum machines and the most gloomy minimalist cadences would once again regain their pertinent place on the podium. Among these names of imperishable experience and incessant talent, the figure of Raúl López emerges, craftsman of the most industrial beat and alma mater of the project. Suzie Command, which, and after his signing by El Genio Equivocado in 2020 for the publication of his “Corazón o Plomo”returns in 2023 with an EP of six songs that summarize with brevity and precision the best of his usual sound: “The Last Blows.”
Quite wisely, precisely these six immediate impacts reach us, warning us of how this baggage accumulated by Raúl over the years manages to emerge perfectly in a direct and direct format, where we are shown clearly and concisely what the sound of Commando Suzie has meant in these almost two decades of existence. A tone with hints of yesteryear, that does not strive to sound current or disguise itself as what it is not and that evolves through human lyrics close to discouragement (“He’s 20 years old, he’s depressed / He stays in bed, Human Tetris and Motorama are playing”), faithfully indebted to a recent present that has marked so many of us (“He wants to go to a concert with his new girlfriend / they are not vaccinated, they are looking for a passport, he feels clautrophobic”continues singing in the opening cut, “Black Tide”) and sustained in space and time by López’s disturbing voice, atonal and impassive throughout his apocalyptic and somber narrative.
The gloomy veneer of his story does not prevent it from also ending up with the fine irony of this artist from Terrassa, always attentive to lowering the value of his verb into everyday life more than just walking around the house: “You’re wearing an Adidas tracksuit, it looks nice on you, Dorian’s t-shirt from the last album”sings in the peculiar “The Girl in the Tracksuit”; which, in some way, passes the baton to the no less sordid “Mistress”, whose duet chorus with the backing vocals of Eva Grace becomes one of the most notable peaks of the EP: “All the pain I could feel now I’m sorry and I don’t even tell you about love and pleasure.” Another of those highlights, without a doubt, is the opportunity to enjoy various deviations in the instrumentation of their cuts, in charge of the plucking of Èric Palaudàries, who goes from that forceful and industrial sound at the beginning of the EP to a friendlier and more dreampop. luminous, sometimes completely ideal to frame the romantic idealism of the lyrics (“Other life”).
However, above all, those storytelling skills of its vocalist govern, who is capable of enveloping us in just six songs with the dynamics and rawness of a breaking latest news of love and habit, framed between tubular winks of techno sound and sensual reminiscences of “Living Your Life” by Godard. A discreet but enjoyable romance that continues to successfully remind us of López’s valid and valid record.