Kiss Kiss's self-titled debut EP delivers emotive vocals amidst a soundscape of breathtaking violins, wind instruments, synthesizers, Wurlitzers, and Harmoniums. The songs are infused with dark undertones, desperate yearning, and manic angst. It's as if Placebo, Portishead, and Stravinsky met in a dark alley to create music that blends eeriness and unpredictability with the string-driven rock frenzy of D.C.'s defunct Smart Went Crazy.
The electric violin is the centerpiece of Kiss Kiss’s orchestral rock: always seductive and intriguing, at times brazen and bold, with an uncanny ability to be demure and mysterious. The violin's versatility creates a beautiful complement to lead singer Josh Benash as he seamlessly shifts from tormented wails to purring melodies.
"Drifts and Pulls" is a chilling and beautiful duet that allows the listener to eavesdrop on an intimate conversation as it crescendos from despondent whispers to a tumultuous tête-à-tête. In "College Film," the score sets a beautiful stage on which Benash performs a drama filled with hysteric distress. "Killing the Son" is a delicate but full-bodied lament, with captivating interplay between the guitar and violin that permeates the song with dynamic tension.
Kiss Kiss recently embarked on a whirlwind tour of the Northeast and Midwest and plans a random stop in North Carolina. The tour crisscrosses the map as their EP traverses a breadth of musical and emotional terrain, from touching acoustic lullabies to cacophony with fierce, frustrated vocals. Check out the calendar on their MySpace profile to see if they're making it to a town near you.