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Identity Crisis

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There are multiple artists known as Identity Crisis.


#1:Doom-laden drums, murky synths, Middle Eastern rhythms, dreamy guitar riffs, and ghostly vocals: The Identity Crisis had the style and soul of a mid-’80s European band on the dark 4AD record label. However, they weren’t from Europe, and 4AD never touched their music. Formed in Manila, Philippines, in 1986, the Identity Crisis had an aura of mystery; most of their lineup even withheld their last names. The band originally consisted of Lenny Llapitan (keyboards), Resty (guitars), Buddy Boy (vocals), Bogs (bass), and Marvin (drums). New wave radio DJ Carla Abaya, otherwise known as Cool Carla, eventually joined the band, her Siouxsie Sioux-ish gothic vocals highlighting the group’s enigmatic pop on their 1988 debut album …Tale of Two, on Dyna Records. In Manila, tracks such as “Imagining Oktober” and “My Sanctuary” leapt onto radio play lists saturated by the sullen rock of English artists like the Cure and Joy Division even before the album’s release. In concert, the Identity Crisis seduced fans with their elegant new wave outfits and ethereal sound. The group paid homage to their foreign post-punk influences by covering new wave radio hits such as Xmal Deutschland’s “Matador” and the Adventures’ “Two Rivers” in concert; there were even quotes from Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s “Happy Hi” on “Whispering Castles” and the Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go?” on “My Sanctuary.” But the Identity Crisis’ hybrid of gothic rock, Middle Eastern and classical music, jazz, and new wave wasn’t built for mass consumption. The band recorded one more album, Water Came Running, before drifting into the shadows…

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