Trust + ERAAS at Lincoln Hall | Concert preview
Goth-poppers expel their dark-wave demons.
From its earliest appearance in ancient Roman philosophy to its current ubiquity throughout pop culture, the term alter ego suggests myriad associations. A second self has the potential to be heroic or harrowing, and in the case of Trust, the alter ego of Robert Alfons, it’s often both; the Toronto artist weaves heartfelt-yet-murky, synth-driven narratives that are both alluring and unnerving.
On his 2012 full-length debut, TRST, Alfons takes listeners to those chillingly familiar nighttime places that never fail to seduce, like a deserted highway or a seedy back-alley club. The androgynous singer’s baritone hiss is sensual, conjuring the spooky spirit of a mythical serpent-tempter, though the album’s 11 songs provide more than a mere taste of Alfons’s forbidden fruits. “You’re an act / You’re a card,” he proclaims in “Heaven,” a track that’s solemn but not overwrought, pulsating with the electro demons that haunt the frontman’s goth-pop stage persona.
The turbid timbre of ERAAS is a fitting introduction. The Brooklyn quartet’s dense, tribal textures and desolate vocals are the fog machine that fills the room for Trust’s dark-wave dance party. If Dead Can Dance and Swans had a pagan love child, ERAAS would be it. It’s not cute, maybe a little bit terrifying even, but you can’t help but be drawn in by the group’s ominous, captivating presence.