A L B U M R E V I E W
'It Only Ends Once' by ‘Dharma Police’
‘It Only Ends Once’ is the third album released by ‘Dharma Police’, a project of ex-Hamiltonian (now Auckland-based) Dan Satherley. Musically, the album has an ‘80s synth-pop vibe, reminiscent of early Depeche Mode – or, more obviously, Satherley’s other project ‘Anecdata’ and its predecessor ‘Radio Over Moscow’. However, this project differs from his others, in that the lyrics revolve around events from the television show ‘Lost’ – something you may have already guessed based on the album or project titles, if you are a fan of the show.
Not having been a fan of Lost myself, I approach the song titles and lyrics as something of an outsider. A little like how I imagine that dog felt when its Michigan owner took it to a Furry Convention earlier this year. What is meant by titles such as ‘We're Not Going to Guam, Are We?’, ‘Fish Biscuit’ and the title track ‘It Only Ends Once’? To a Lost fan these questions may be obvious. What I love most about Satherley’s (other) Anecdata project is that it is educational, covering topics including conspiracy theories, the supernatural, sci-fi and American politics; subjects I can relate to. Here, unfortunately, I can't. But then again, does it matter? Do I understand what the lyrics of most of the songs I hear mean?
Overall, if you fit into the intersection of a Venn diagram depicting Depeche Mode and Lost enthusiasts, this is the perfect album for you. Then again, if you are a fan of ‘80s synth pop alone, this may also fit your bill, if you don’t get caught up in the knowledge that the lyrics are about a TV show you are unfamiliar with.
Visit the Dharma Police Bandcamp Page here:
- Ian Duggan