Listen To The Ropes' 'Sadness Is the Rich Man’s Drug’
The Ropes are very mysterious and they make intriguing music, on their Facebook page, they pretend to be from Antarctica (although they are really from New York city), they hide behind black hoodies, and play with paradoxical words in the titles of heir songs,… like ‘Fond Memories of a Terrible Life’,… ‘People Are Living Longer, but Dying Younger’… or ‘Sadness Is the Rich Man’s Drug’… isn’t a rich man supposed to be happy? The Ropes don’t think so.
The Ropes are a male-female duo with Sharon Shy on bass and vocals and Toppy on multi instruments, and they compose dark, shoegazing, atmospheric, electro-soundscapes with Sharon’s detached, unemotional vocals, which can go from ghostly-eerie (‘Sadness Is the Rich Man’s Drug’) to dreamy with almost-Nico-like intonations (‘Love is a Chain Store’). There is a lot of melancholia in these tracks, but it is a sleepy one, deprived of passion, like a blank stare to the world, a complete disconnection,… gone in the void.
They actually have been active for a few years, but became a duo in 2008 after finding out that working with other band members was ‘a living hell’, and if they have released a new EP a few weeks ago, the collection of songs on their Soundcloud page show how much music they have put out, despite being quite obscure.
But they should get the credit they deserve as one of their songs, ‘Love is a Chain Store’ was sampled by Tricky in their 2013 single ‘Does It’… this bass line is truly somber, and if Tricky gives it the Massive Attack treatment, the original song still stays on the bright and poppy side, with Sharon’s vocals and the right amount touch of darkness,… it sounds like a female version of Interpol or the Cure if they had listened to this new track by Belle and Sebastian.
The Ropes could be the next underground unsung post-punk heroes, and they even have a very weird and depressing video for their title song, showing a woman (Sharon) trying, in vain, to feed her puppet dog with chocolates, in a beige apartment,… some white rich woman’s problem?