There’s both a quiet cool and a dark tension that permeates R. Missing’s EP Unsummering. Even in their promotional material it says “You won’t find love songs here. You’ll find unloved songs. You won’t find summer, you’ll find Unsummering.” Now if that’s not enough to convince you of something dark and mysterious what will? Maybe a bloodied, severed ear that would accompany the record? You know, cut off your ear to spite the record? Anyways, severed body parts aren’t needed because Unsummering stands on its own. It’s cool, calculated, dark, and foreboding like a night of sexual delights that you know will only lead to you alone in your bedroom on a Saturday night with The Cure’s Pornography playing on repeat. Phone off the hook and empy pizza boxes surrounding you like monuments to heartbreak.
I had to look. “Unsummering” isn’t a real word or adjective for that matter. It seems to be a doomed romantic ode to all things shiny and good going to shit. It’s the moment on a bright sunlit day when the black clouds roll in and hide that bit of brightness, turning everything a shade of melancholy. Who is R. Missing? The band consists of She and He Missing, and according to an Impose feature about the band “they’re ready to fight you.” Despite the faux mystery and possible threat of bodily harm they make beautifully doomed electronic music.
“Unsummering” seethes with dance floor promises, but this duo isn’t about release. They’re about holding those desires in and letting them eat you from the inside out. I imagine Wednesday Adams really getting into this song as she detracts any advances from unsuspecting boys. “Kelly Was A Phillistine” is delightfully groove-filled. Cold Cave wishes they could sound this good. Elements of Depeche Mode and New Order make this quite an addictive piece of ear candy. She Missing, whoever She may be, has a smokey voice. It’s dark and alluring and I’m sure will bite if you get too close. She adds just the right amount of charcoal grey to the proceedings. It accentuates the dark electro synth vibe in the music department. “Deeper Holes” has the vocals sounding slightly more vulnerable with the music having a nicely aged analog vibe. The mix of organic and processed works well.
Elsewhere, R. Missing pushes 80s nostalgia with “Birthright” while “Mostly Back” lights up slightly with a Chairlift vibe. “Mouser” closes out this biting EP with a sound like a pared down Human League.
Despite all the mystery and possible threats of fisticuffs, Unsummering is mostly bruise-free. R. Missing’s EP is an enticing shot of electro gothic synth pop. It veers on the darker side, which makes it all the intriguing. You may not find any love songs here, but you’re sure to find some songs to love.