Dangerous Muse, who I first blogged about last November, recently released their second cluster of original material with their "Give Me Danger" EP. It's brilliant. Not only did they maintain the high standard they set with the first EP, but upped the ante by providing an even more consistent set of songs.
Electronic pop in the US is often dismissed by the uninformed with the oft repeated "that sounds just like Depeche Mode" and interestingly Dangerous Muse chose to take that potential insult and give it a giant bear hug. Musically I would think they would be far more influenced by Eurodisco than the doom and gloom of Depeche but for some reason all of the three songs on the EP reference the Mode. I had previously mentioned the title track using a sound that is remarkably similar to the lead synth on "New Life" and that's just the beginning. "Break Up" lacks any obvious musical cues that I've caught, but they quote the "I heard it from your friends" line from the Music For The Masses track "The Things You Said" with a reading that suggests the Depeche melody. "In This Town" is the most obvious example of the duo paying tribute to the Mode because it borrows the distinctive bass and uses sampled breathing to recreate the drum track from Some Great Reward's "Lie To Me". Given that none of these songs actually sound like Depeche Mode, with the obvious exception of "In This Town", I find it strange that they would do a whole EP that references them. Well, they do share the same initials and now there's reason to believe that's more than coincidence.
Two of the EP's tracks can be streamed at Dangerous Muse's myspace and Arjan has a stream for the other track so check them out. They really are a fantastic band that are my favorite discovery of the past year even if they just released a dodgy amateurish video for "The Rejection".