Loyalists will recognize Louche as former front man of industrial rock heavyweight Chemlab. After abandoning the drug-addled combo for a life on Wall Street, Louche returns with an album of covers. Enduring frequently misguided and incoherent reworkings, Roxy Music, Iggy Pop, AIR, Leonard Cohen, PIL, LOVE and Frank Sinatra get the techno-art once over on Covergirl.
Those prone to such analysis and pretension will call this “deconstruction.” And at the end of the day that might be the humorless truth of it all. More cynicism than irony, Covergirl is peppered with rock-headed vignettes like, “Come back to my place and I’ll show you destruction.” For my dollar such blatant and bald-faced attempts at depravity seem a bit too, you know, affected. With Chemlab, Louche presided over something, for all its stuck-in-the-moment hipness, unique and creative—perhaps even a bit dangerous. Here, he’s traded creative for glib. And smug shit like the “goodnight, fuck you” before the clumsy faux-live version of Cohen’s “Famous Blue Raincoat,” doesn’t just fuck up Covergirl‘s credibility—it reveals it’s nihilism to be an irritating pose. Debauchery can get away with stupidity but it’s never allowed to be boring.
Covergirl‘s brightest moments are clouded under a frustrating barrage of sound effects and soundtrack schtick. The record has no confidence and no vision. It’s lost sight of it’s own strengths and tries to posit it’s weakest ideas as it’s strongest (the opening “In Every Dreamhome A Heart Ache” and closing “Summer Wind” are ghastly). Too often Louche’s “compositions” fall into carelessness—abandoning not just the details of the originals but their spirit as well. Still, Covergirl doesn’t always fail. Iggy and the Stooge’s “Search and Destroy” (look out we’re using technology) is a brief glimmer of what the Louche’s project could have been: raw, edgy and a foot in the ass to purists who hold these originals sacred.