The first time I encountered this duo, was in a bar during the Incubate Festival in Tilburg (NL). Back then I really liked their music, which reminded me of something between Sisters Of Mercy, Echo & the Bunnymen, The Jesus & Mary Chain and so on. I wasn't the only one by the way. On my right was a guy dancing almost ecstatically and yelling 'thank you' after each song. Usually it's the other way around but hey, music is freedom.
After their show, I asked Nicolas if he had any cd's. All they had was one copy but they forgot it in their hotel room. We agreed to meet up later and so we did. I still got the CD and it's still being played often here, currently not as much as 'Of Desire', but that has a good reason as you will read soon. When 'Always Then' came out, we met again, at Trix in Antwerp this time. It was a good show and a great album. Hell, I don't even remember who headlined that evening...
Anyway, on to some days ago when I received 'Of Desire', perhaps one of the most anticipated albums in this household. We quickly unwrapped it and fed the disc to our cd-player. What came out was exactly what I predicted in Tilburg some years ago, a very strong album with great songs. An album that proves how a band can grow and evolve into a mature sound while still being loyal to their influences.
So yes, Kat and Nicolas have truly grown into their role as convincing musicians, delivering a number of tracks that can easily stand next to most of the 'New Wave Club Classix' compilation. Opener 'White Walls' is an immediate club hit. It reminds me of the gloomy sound of bands like A Flock Of Seagulls or even The Cure. 'Night Games' repeats that atmosphere, be it deeper and even somewhat darker.
'Lower Depths' is actually the first true surprise for me. In a way, I reminds me of Public Relation's 'New Beat Mind', driving on slow electronics and a monotonous bass lines. Above these, the subdued vocals and slashing guitars create something quite epic, a first highlight indeed. 'Never Enough' is another one, and once again a genuine classic. Here, I'm reminded of Suicide, another one of those cult acts from the eighties, and so is the stunning shoegazer 'In Deep'.
If you were a new wave fan in the eighties, if you have ever enjoyed attending those parties where every single person was dressed black and dancing to gloomy, obscure music, if you sometimes feel nostalgic or in a dark romantic mood, you need this album. 'Of Desire' is not only The KVB's best, most mature and experienced work, it's one of the best albums in the amalgamation of dark music we like to call 'new wave' in the last decade or so.