Maria & the Mirrors

Maria & The Mirrors appeared in Deptford one night in 2008 following years of studying the Netto style of shamanic drum invocation in the Siberian islands of Novaya Zemlya. Eyewitnesses reported sequins, seashells and the unmistakable smell of Elnette wafting right down the high street. This style originated in the 1950s as residents of the town of Belushya found the only way to cope with the frequent atomic testing was by coming together and going drum crazy, inducing trance-like states within the polyrhythmic din. The Mirrors update this traditional style, influenced by the likes of Hanatarash and Throbbing Gristle, treating all sounds electronically and fused with whirring concrete tape sounds harvested from around London Town like Pierre Schaeffer on a bad day. These combine with visceral double drum attack and nagging vocal melodies recalling Yoko Ono and Gang Gang Dance --- Netto Disco Sound! Complemented by a luridly glamorous/tropical visual and sartorial look inspired by the likes of Kenneth Anger, Roxy Music, Sister Sledge and Justine Frischmann.


Since that fateful Deptford evening Maria & The Mirrors have undertaken many live demonstrations including a decommissioned nuclear research reactor in Minsk and a warehouse in Bow without a roof - luckily in didn't rain - winning admirers and support slots with the likes of Health and OOIOO. In the meantime Mirrors recorded an album with Throbbing Gristle engineer Sherry Ostapovich and found new jumpsuits at Kilburn car boot sale.


Maria & the Mirrors follow up 2010's Omar with the Travel Sex EP on Parlour Records. Fresh from playing with the likes of John Maus, Faust, MEN and Hype Williams, Travel Sex is a true document of their visceral live shows where pounding dancehall rhythms combine with nagging vocal melodies and bursts of pummeling power electronics; influences include Throbbing Gristle, Gang Gang Dance, Prurient, Girl Unit and Capleton.


All photos by Tom Moran