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Alexis Marshall (Daughters) and the nightmare of 'Hounds In The Abyss'

5 June 2021 | 4:46 pm | Alex Sievers
Originally Appeared In

The new solo single from the Daughters frontman is a terrifying, industrial noise-rock piece.

The new single from the Daughters frontman is a terrifying industrial-noise piece that dives deep into the psyche & uncomfortable fear. 

In 2020, Alexis Marshall dropped his first solo single, 'Nature In Three Movements,' a pulsing noise-rock composition of eerie shimmers, sporadic drums and manic vocals that sounded like a horror-movie chase motif. Now the Daughters vocalist is following that up with a new single and the reveal of his first solo LP, 'House of Lull. House of When,' out July 23rd via Sargent House.

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When I say that 'Hounds In The Abyss' is a nightmare, I don't mean that as a knock against it. Quite the opposite: it's one of the bleakest yet most gripping pieces of music I've heard all year. For it's genuinely a nightmarish track of unending paranoia. Like you should be looking over your shoulder while listening, locking your doors before you press play. A song that pulls from a well of uncomfortable feelings and horrible experiences. So much so that to even ask what it really means feels like prying too much.

'Hounds In The Abyss' is heart-pounding and utterly haunting. It's arranged with droning sounds and looped rumbling percussion, a fire that has gasoline poured on it as it develops, as Alexis croaks and groans "are you the one throwing rocks at my windows all night?", among other off-putting expressions. A family tale, inspired by a stalker, or a metaphor for something obscure, I shudder to think about the place that lyrics like "Are you the one waiting in the parking lot outside my work?" and "Are you the one letting the air out of the tires of my car?" originate from. A part of me doesn't want to know.

'Hounds...' definitely shares thematic and sonic similarities with Daughters last album, specifically that of 'Guest House' or 'City Song,' just with the rock parts replaced by a harsh environment of random, abrasive noises. (Actually, no, hang on, that's exactly like Daughters!) The song and its music video are only six minutes in length but they both feel so much longer, and that's not meant as a criticism. The quick editing and black-and-white filter only add to the paranoid visual world - directed by Jeremy W. - that this song exists within. As does Alexis' thousand-yard stares of malice and the jarring cuts to people with their heads covered by white bags like they're about to be executed. All of which increases the unease and tension of the track. And I love it. Watch the video for full palpable effect: