Monday, January 30, 2017

A Ghostly Yearning: Passive with Desire by Choir Boy

The artwork for Choir Boy's Passive with Desire (released late last year on Team Love Records) features a pair of vampires with pale faces, black cloaks, fearsome fangs and blood-stained lips. One of them is eyeing you up hungrily, while the other twin appears to be in a state of near-orgasm as he imagines biting into your neck and bursting open your jugular vein.

Choir Boy mainman Adam Klopp - the man who dressed up as Dracula for those two photos - will offer you a dozen different explanations as to what the bloodthirsty vampires on the cover of his band's first album represent. They reflect the album's themes of death and depression and darkness, but there's also a nostalgic element to the image, which was conceived - at least in part - as an attempt to recreate a Halloween photo from Klopp's childhood. Then there's the way in which vampires, with their habit for feeding off of others, might be seen as a metaphor for abusive relationships, or our greedy capitalist society, or...

Yes, one can read lots of different things into the vampire imagery that adorns this album (and has also shown up in Choir Boy's gig posters, band photos, and a music video). But funnily enough, when I actually *listen* to Passive with Desire, I don't hear vampires at all - I hear a ghost.