Pause any song on Dove Lady’s excellent new EP E, fast forward 30 seconds or so, and try to guess where you’ll end up. Press play and listen for the sound of your expectations shattering. Five releases into a 26-EP project, Dove Lady only seem further away from solidifying their sound, and even less inclined to drop an outline around the white-hot plasma of punk, noise, ambient, and prog fueling their remarkable chemistry.
Barring the closing noise improvisation of “Eye Against Eye,” each song on E is a breathless sprint across genres. Opener “DZ Theme” comes slithering in on a mournful reversed guitar loop, grows a skeleton to the tune of martial drum triplets, and promptly implodes into fuzz-fried punk ferocity. Dove Lady have the attention span of the “SCAN” function on your radio. Songs unfold like a series of brief, dramatic love affairs. They might swoon over delicate, folky falsetto at the beginning of “Slapback,” but they’ll leave you in the lurch if you catch feelings while they flirt with hip-hop breakbeats and a smooth, surf-inspired interlude, only to leave the scene with a titanic, crashing alt-rock outro.
Given how recklessly catchy they remain throughout, it’s hard not to get attached to any one of these sections. Each suggests a track that would be tremendous on its own; as far as I’m concerned, the spectral R&B groove on “Can’t Be Sad” could go on forever. However, the beauty of E is that it constantly works to subvert that false sense of security while keeping you thoroughly entertained. If you love the chase, open your heart and give it a spin.