Picks and Pans Review: World Outside

updated 10/14/1991 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/14/1991 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Psychedelic Furs

Psychedelic Furs music sounds full of angst. Mired in depression. Enveloped in moodiness. And these are its positive qualities.

This is a band that loves misery's company, and seldom has it sounded more at home than on this eighth Furs album. Which means it's one of the group's best. World Outside harks back to the early '80s and the first Furs albums, when gloom was in and pop posturing was out. After that, the group seemed to stretch for that ever-elusive hit single and lost its morose edge. From the opening drone of "Valentine," though, you know this is the record where the Furs are redeemed.

Not all the songs are downbeat. In fact, such tunes as "In My Head" and "There's a World" have relatively upbeat hooks. Still, most of the music floats along like a dark rain cloud on the horizon, one big bundle of negative energy ready to explode.

The thundering thump of the music is perfect moping-after-midnight material, and vocalist/lyricist Richard Butler's raspy moan has never sounded more sincere. While the dark tunes are distant, though, his singing keeps them inviting. Depression is rarely so enjoyable. (Columbia)

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