This morning we heard news of Steven Jones + Logan Sky stepping forward with an eerie new single to give us something new to hear that reflects our current zeitgeist. “Shedding My Skin” is a 3-track download made during the weirdness. Given that one of the things we miss so much from the 80s was the joy of a good 12″ single, I’m more than down with their release of a “non-LP A-side” for our delight that comes complete with B-side remix and a spectacular dub mix as well.
Steven Jones + Logan Sky: Shedding My Skin – DL 
- Shedding My Skin
- Toy [Boxed]
- New Skin
“Shedding My Skin” came with differences that were immediately apparent from the first note with Jones’ lonesome expression vocals sounding very eerie and windswept against the grinding synths and modest beatbox. The lyrics were a well-considered turn by recent collaborator Kevin O’Dowd who also gave some lyric to their last new album, “Rotating Angels.” The response of the individual to covid-19 as well as the greater role that the environment and even the surveillance culture play all existed here in a dance of anxiety to the minor key shards of synth that Mr. Sky brought to the table. The vibe was subdued and uncertain, like we all have been. At the end of the song the thematic précis that Jones’ haunting backing vocals brought to the program were a new sort of atmosphere for the duo who seem to be leaving behind their days of synthpop like a discarded first stage booster.
A remix of the song “Toy” from the “Rotating Angels” album fit right into the vibe here like a missing puzzle piece. Some times a B-side is a weird wildcard that didn’t fit anywhere else, but in this case, the repurposed song was definitely of a piece to the A-side it was mated with. And the spectacular dub mix, “New Skin,” stripped away all of the lead vocals and rhythm to substitute delicate synth arpeggios and some truly spectacular guitar from Henri Voltaire, a player I’d never heard of before but will be interested in hearing more from. This was a crystalline piece of dark beauty like shards of obsidian tumbling through the night sky, catching glints of starlight. I was thrilled to see the pair enlisting Jan Linton on their last work, and here Mr. Voltaire certainly matched the high standard they had already established for guest guitar most capably. This is haunting, elegant work by all concerned.
The Post-Punk complexity that they had begun with the last album has continued here with this new single, which is available for listening and as a free download below, but of course we pay for nice things. Their new album is still in the oven but this was a welcome piece to have them share with us in this weird period.
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