singer Davey Havok and guitarist Jade Puget had been working on songs for their electronic side project Blaqk Audio since before AFI
's breakthrough album Sing the Sorrow came out in 2003, it took a few years for the music to see the light of day.
The success of their group's major-label debut prevented the two from spending much time on Blaqk, though Puget still continued to bring programmed sounds into AFI
's repertoire, both on Sing the Sorrow and 2006's Decemberunderground. Finally, in early 2007, Havoc (on vocals) and Puget (on everything else) were able to complete what they began, releasing the all-electronic dance and goth-inspired CexCells on Interscope
in August of that same year. Combining an equal measure of influence from Depeche Mode
, New Order
, and Pet Shop Boys
, Blaqk Audio resurrected a distinctly nocturnal '80s sound for the aughts. Between albums, they contributed to soundtracks for the movie Abduction and the Batman: Arkham City video game. In 2012, the pair returned with a second '80s synth pop-inflected album, Bright Black Heaven. Four years later, a continuation of that same sound was melded with darker sonics on Material, which saw Blaqk Audio veer in an icier, more intense direction. ~ Marisa Brown & Neil Z. Yeung, Rovi