Given the unruly and eccentric sonic universe that the Brooklyn quartet Gang Gang Dance have inhabited these past 5 years, it seems fairly fitting that they'd title their new, fourth album after a patron saint of the abject and afflicted. Specifically Saint Dymphna -- the martyred Celtic pagan princess who protects those who suffer from a variety of mental illnesses and neural disorders, epilectics and sleepwalkers, as well as victims of rape, incest and sexual abuse; blesser of families and institutions who strive to shield or heal the damaged from the psychic shocks and traumas of life.
With Saint Dymphna, GGD have taken a few steps toward what some would consider "accessibility." Gone are the avant jaunts into abstraction and the subsuming reverb-drenched haze that murked up some of their prior recordings. Instead, the band's sounding much more polished and linear - offering a new batch of material that twists along on serpentine, trans-global rhythms, foregrounded melodies, and awash in shimmering synth textures. And while the album is being touted as the band's "pop" or "club" move, at its core one finds the band still traveling along the arc of their own delirious and celebratory Fourth-world urban psychedelia.
Gang Gang Dance are currently touring to support Saint Dymphna, a tour that'll probably prove extensive given that the group was recently picked up for international distribution by the prestigious UK label, Warp Records. They're playing the Empty Bottle this Monday night, headlining on a bill that also features touring companion and Kill Rock Stars recording artist Marnie Stern. Tirra Lirra get things started in the opening slot. 1035 N. Western Ave. Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door, and it all gets underway at 9:30 PM.