For Against – Black Soap

January 01, 1970

(Words On Music)



The first in a series of archival releases, Black Soap presents a pair of unreleased
early songs and a remix from Nebraska’s veteran post-punk combo For Against. Recorded
on 4-track cassette in 1984 prior to the release of the trio’s 1987 debut album
Echelons, “Black Soap” and “Dark Good
Friday” show a band with a clear debt to Joy Division, but also a vision of its
own working its way through the cloud of influence.


Guitarist Harry Dingman III weaves crystal droplets of
arpeggios through the gloom, while singer Jeffrey Runnings’ boyish vocals shine
just enough light to allow the band to walk through shadows instead of in complete
darkness. The disk is rounded out by “Amen Yves (White Circles),” a remix of a
fan favorite early tune that sounds even more like Closer-era Joy Division than the other tracks. Black Soap is the portrait of a band in transition even it began,
smart enough to hit “record” only after its own identity began to emerge.


Good Friday” “Black Soap” MICHAEL TOLAND

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