Batavia’s sound is something of its own creation entirely. Batavia are a husband and wife duo along with Terri & Ed Cripps from Jacksonville, FL. While primarily rooted in Gothic Industrial, the group have utilized the genre as a vehicle to incorporate a span of influence ranging from Dream Pop to Noise Rock. In doing so, they create a unique musical palette of their very own. By invoking the namesake of the wreck and mutiny of The Batavia, they have made a point to utilize their music to tell the darker stories lost to history.
The duo’s name and indeed the title of this latest release “Mailman”, even the artwork, suggest perhaps a Goth rock or Noise Rock outpouring will occur as you press play. However, assumption is the enemy of creativity, and what you actually get is something incredibly melodic and uniquely crafted.
At the same time as being surrounded by this euphoric meeting of the industrial world and the perhaps more natural one, which, in itself, is often enough to keep a listener contained, the music here develops and enthralls you with every beat and every moment that passes. You’re not simply contained or surrounded by the sound, you’re captivated by it, provoked to think more deeply, to explore your own imagination as the creative production subtly yet surely directs you through this manic yet blissful world of audio.
Listening through headphones, high quality speakers, or in the car, is the best way to get something real out of this. The intricate detail involved in the crafting of this music is phenomenal, and yet as a complete release the soundscape has this mesmerizing and beautiful atmosphere, so whatever it is that you choose to focus on, whether it’s the musical build up, or nothing but your own thoughts and feelings as you experience and react to it – the result is pretty hypnotic. The Mailman in itself is a stunning project and well worth a download, but for those with only a few minutes free to escape or to make a decision – Mailman is a sensational place to start.
There are some notably gentle moments within the release that create a powerful contrast with the more bold sounding ones. The lyrics are simple yet each one of importance is repeated just enough times to make it really sink in. “Mailman” is the first to hit hard, the feeling multiplied by the surrounding music. Then the hook, the questioning nature of the lyrics here provoking certain ideas and adding to that mysterious element that the soundscape comes with. The leading vocal is beautifully on point throughout the song, the singer’s range adds a level of appeal that is not always found in rock music, and it works well. The band are doing their own thing entirely, and the sound shines brightly as a result.