Spotlights return with new album, Alchemy For The Dead

Photo by John Pope

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Spotlights occupy the space between a push-and-pull of jarring metallic catharsis and sweeping distortion. Even as either side vies for supremacy, neither extreme ever completely tightens its grip, allowing waves of melodic vocals and expressive sonic sorcery to breathe in the middle. This deft balancing act has enabled the trio—husband-and-wife Mario Quintero [guitar, vocals, keys] and Sarah Quintero [bass, vocals] joined by Chris Enriquez [drums]—to carve a singular lane. Armed with an uncanny ability to wield darkness or light, the trio’s fourth full-length offering, Alchemy for the Dead [Ipecac Recordings] is a work of gothic grandeur and arrives on the 28th April.

“For me, the song has a religious theme to it,” Mario adds. “It touches on the story of resurrection and afterlife in this one narrative, while wondering, does any of it really matter?” That narrative, one of death, the resistance and acceptance to one of life’s most secretive aspects, is a lyrical theme throughout Alchemy For The Dead.

Alchemy for the Dead finds the band exploring something we all face, yet few embrace.

A preview of the nine-song collection arrives today with the release of the Oleg Rooz-created lyric video for “Algorithmic.”

“One of the major parts of our lives, is the fact we’re all going to die,” says Mario. “Most people are terrified of it, some people learn to look forward to it, and some see it as a way out of their misery. Various cultures view it differently. There isn’t necessarily a story to the album as a whole, but each song deals with the theme of death. It could be fantasy such as bringing a loved one back to life or darker moments like suicide and deep depression. Then, there are thoughts about death overall in terms of the entire human race. The “Alchemy” part plays more into occult themes such as seance and crossing the threshold between the living and the dead, or religious rituals that humans use to connect with lost loved ones.”

Mario Quintero shares the band’s mindset while writing and recording Alchemy For The Dead: “Our focus when making this record was to not repeat ourselves. I think we achieved our goal. Though we’re proud of all our releases, making just another ‘Spotlights’ album wasn’t an option. Pushing our own boundaries while creating something cathartic, yet strangely suffocating, with new sounds and textures as well as more personal and self-reflective themes, this album feels like a new fork in the path for us. Hopefully the listeners will follow.”

Spotlights are one of the hardest working new bands out there – plugging away on tour after tour, earning every fan they have, whether its Chino Moreno of Deftones, or the bartender at a local club. Having carved out their own niche, now cement their status with a vision like no other.

“If you’re an artist, I hope our music inspires you to make art and push the envelope,” he leaves off. “If you’re not, I hope it inspires you to think differently, and get your mind off the day-to-day bullshit. Even though the themes might seem morbid and dark, as always we hope our music creates positivity. We all need to care for one another and all living beings on this planet, while we can.”

Album pre-orders, which include two 2LP vinyl variants: a standard black version and a limited-edition gold edition available exclusively via Vinyl arrives on the 4th of August.

Track listing

1 – Beyond the Broken Sky
2 – The Alchemist
3 – Sunset Burial
4 – Algorithmic
5 – False Gods
6 – Repeat the Silence
7 – Ballad in the Mirror
8 – Crawling Toward the Light
9 – Alchemy for the Dead


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