Nun’s sound flows from sinister drone-orgy and hyperkinetic synth-punk to saturated new wave worship by incorporating huge, gnarling basslines, shimmering analogue synthesiser, punishing drum machine and the most malevolent vocal presence since the Dalek.
From the first few seconds of opening track ‘Immersion II’, it is clear that the lean minimal buzz of their debut 7” Solvents (on cult Melbourne label Nihilistic Orbs) was merely one sparkling facet of a much more monstrous body of work. Their debut album veers from perfectly crafted electronic pop to intense industrial noise, with singer Jenny Branagan’s scathing lyrical vision always rising to occupy the central point of focus.
Song structures are simple, considered and direct - everything is fine-tuned to ensure maximum sonic devastation. Synthesisers spit juddering sequences over a dark melodic backdrop that alternates between sinister atonality and serene melancholy, while insistent percussion cracks time beneath Branagan’s formidable vocals which range from sweet 1980s pop and detached gothic intonation, to a terrifying yell as the music requires.
Nun’s unrelenting aesthetic sense penetrates every aspect of this record, resulting in a remarkably cohesive work of art. The music is danceable and poppy, it’s sad and incisive, it’s fun, aggressive and heavy as hell. Most impressive of all is its immense force; the effortless delivery belying an overwhelming sense of something very heavy and unpleasant looming just beneath the scintillating pop surface.
Recommended If You Like: Chrisma, Kas Product, Total Control, New Order, Second Layer, Grauzone, Black Bug.