Eleven years after Wil Fancis and his band, Aiden, exploded into the consciousness of emos and goths worldwide, and with 6 years since he unveiled his new project, William Control, the world sees another outing by his self-titled suit. This time it’s with the elegantly gothic title The Neuromancer.
An album that oozes with Goth, worlds away from the punk, guitar-heavy influences of Aiden, the lyrical content is somewhat exotic. With song titles like The Filth and the Fetish, and lyrics like “I want your pussy, I want your body bruised and bloody”, the album definitely has the lyrics that go with lots of black clothing and plenty of electronica. There’s also the use of the sound of a woman screaming and the sounds of someone being hit. It’s a very specific style of electronica erotica.
A lot of the album sees Wil Francis successfully channelling his inner Edgar Alan Poe with spoken word segments. Price We Pay becomes a highlight because it’s one of the few times he indulges us with a catchy chorus. There are plenty woah-ohs in his back catalogue, and this latest output seems to try to be more challenging. Instrumentally, it sounds like Depeche Mode at their darkest, occasionally singing lyrics that Trent Reznor would find a bit racy.
Unfortunately, there’s still nothing as catchy and memorable as William Control’s magnum opus, Beautiful Loser, and nothing to match Aiden songs like One Love and Die Romantic, a comparison it’s hard not to draw. Casual fans might be underwhelmed, but The Neuromancer is definitely an album that William Control fans will love.