"we're rehearsing a tableaux."

In 1989, Chris Isaak spelled out the damage and decadence, flame and fury, indecision and reluctance of romance with "Wicked Games," detailed in an iconic glamorous black-and-white video on a frozen beach in the dead of winter. 24 years later, The Weeknd detailed the current state of romance and relationships with "Wicked Games." With Abel Tesfaye, the flame is long past burned out, (much like Tesfaye's dopamine receptors) - more like cold, dead ash in the hearth. The Weeknd's love is nowhere to be found - he's all alone, but still captured in crisp, Ultravox-like neoclassical b&w.



Tellingly, London's Plested is a scant 24 years old, meaning he's lived nearly his entire life between these two romantic bookmarks. With one wing steeped in the neoclassical romantic swoon of Chris Isaak, particularly in the shivering, emotive vocals, steeped in a canyon of reverb, but perhaps reacting to the nihilism, existentialism, and decadence of The Weeknd, Plested offers a unique insight of the plight of the modern romantic.

Musically, Plested is blending the modern, the classic, and the futuristic, with the barest hints of trembling garage guitars, a la Santo And Johnny's immortal slowdance "Sleepwalk" and adorned with deep, cannon-like post-dubstep electronics. "Habits" is the sound of the digital void, alone in a darkened room, staring at a flickering screen and dreaming of connection. It's also the sound of putting down the phone and having a real connection. We Are: The Guard encourage you all to do the same. Let's get real!