Band Review: Life on Venus

Life on Venus is a Russian shoegaze band formed in 2015. It is composed of five members: Dmitry (guitar, vocals), Oleg (guitar), Marat (bass), Alina (vocals) and Gulnara (drums).

While listening to Life on Venus you are propelled into another world. You are instantly carried away by the reverberated guitar, the calm and soft voices, and the 80s/90s inspired sound of the band. Their music is wrapping you up in a cotton ball and invites you to contemplate the vastness of the universe.

They release their first EP Distant Lights in 2016 and it laid the foundations of the band’s musical identity. In 2017 it is followed by their first album Encounters (Shelflife Records), which is in line with the first EP. The ambience is dreamy and atmospheric. Then in 2019 the second album Odes to the void is released. We can already feel an evolution. The voice is more assumed, less hidden, instruments are rawer, melodies are darker and more melancholic.

One can’t help but notice inspirations such as the classical shoegaze bands such as Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine. Cocteau Twins also comes to mind, as well as the early The Gathering albums, especially with the track What Lies Beneath.

Life on Venus music is both distant and comforting. Even if it feels like an oxymoron, it perfectly describe the strength of the band, being able to gather such different and ambivalent feelings, but with subtlety.

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