Victorian Death Photos is a Houston-based post-punk/darkwave act that’s shrouded in a cloak of mystery: The Houston-based act features two anonymous artists, a man and a woman, who publicly go by He and She. The duo’s latest project can trace its origins back to a series of multimedia collaborations between the pair. Interestingly enough, the duo initially intended for Victorian Death Photos to be a metal album — but the best laid plans of mice and men, as they say.
Once they started working on original material together, they wound up zeroing in on a “haunted synthy post-punk electronic sound,” which wound up comprising their Victorian Death Photos debut, The Basement Tapes EP released earlier this year. “We went with it,” She says in press notes.
Back in July, I wrote about “Radium Girls,” a song, as the duo explained was based on a true story: In the early 1920s, female workers in watch factories, painted watch dials with radium paint. The women were repeatedly told that the paint was harmless. But after being around and ingesting massive amounts of radium, the female factory workers wound up contracting severe radiation poisoning: the factory workers wound up with their teeth falling out, and bone deterioration in the jaw — to the point of having bones removed.
Ultimately, the track with revealed the duo’s ability to craft a rousingly anthemic hook within a song that bearded a resemblance to Garbage‘s self-titled debut and Version 2.0.
The Houston-based act ends 2021 with “Home.” Centered around glistening synth arpeggios, skittering, tweeter and woofer rocking beats and She’s yearning vocals, “Home” is simultaneously a brooding and icy bit of post-punk/darkwave seemingly inspired by early Depeche Mode and an earnest ballad expressing profound heartbreak and longing over a relationship and lover, who was confusing and dysfunctional.
Shot in a gorgeous and cinematic black and white, the recently released video for “Home” begins by following a young boy, who dreams of being an astronaut and of space exploration. In one of his dreams, he lands on an Earth-like planet, where he sees a woman digging in the sand. We see the boy as he explores a forest. The video ends with the boy being flung out into space.