Awhile ago, my parents brought me back a disc from the Czech Republic: Sunshine, a group out of the town of Tabor, and their 2007 release, Dreamer, on the Czech branch of Universal Music. Sunshine is the !!! (Chk Chk Chk) of Eastern Europe (or should I say they’re !z!z!z (Czech Czech Czech?). With tracks like “Top! Top! The Radio!” and “Ghetto,” they’ve got that live dance club sound although with a more electronic feel that !!! (perhaps, in that way, Sunshine is a bit more like Radio 4).
Thematically, though, Sunshine feels like Dead or Alive throughout the album. You’ll notice it on the first track, “You (In Your Head),” with talk of failing relationship and its ghost. Like Dead or Alive, talk of love gets combined with themes of darkness, violence, being alone, anger, witches, and vampires. “Macabre Interlude” has the creepiness of Dead or Alive in their pre-Nine Inch Nails way leading into “Dead Leaves,” Sunshine’s most NIN sounding song.
Because of those themes, there’s also some spiritual avenues to explore here. “You (In Your Head)” opens itself to a Bible discussion with the stanza:
You can’t eat, can’t sleep, your heart is bleeding
It’s such a mess, but the angels will hold you tight
No one listens, but I hope, you will take it anyway
Another crash, another tie to hell.
The song explores a hope for more and rescue from this life (through Jesus?) despite being very entwined in some very dark alleys.
On “Ghetto,” one line (“Your faith is turning to grey”) is great for talking about what happens when you’re hitting complacency in your faith.