Thursday, June 18, 2015

Tidemouth : "Velvet and Stone"

The trend in the maturation of hard core kids seems to be pulling out Nick Cave and Echo and the Bunnymen albums. This could be due to the interest in vinyl these kids took a few years back which might have caused them to stumble over these old 80s albums. I am fine with this as long as they do no become to slavish in their devotion only to Joy Division. I love Joy Division , but I do think dark music begins or ends with the. in the they do not abandon their hard core side. It is put through a darker filter when they roar out into "Vaccinate". They marry the two sides in an emotive manner than find them treading closer to more organic introspection characteristic of Brand New. The tender melancholic tone that opens "Memories of You" is closer to the conventional goth that emerged out of the 80s before it is pounded into a more angered demeanor. It carries an angular jerk in some ways like that of At- Drive In, but with more malice and dissonance. They make you think they are always on the verge of  returning to a more melodic nature. "Clearing the Forest" its dips and drags back and forth like a bi-polar tug of war. The tightly picked guitar work add a creepy slink to the songs drugged momentum.

The first song that their more punk roots takes time to grow on me is "Sunlight Sonata". The almost sung break downs in the verse helps to smooth this over for me. The tension reaches more metallic proportions on "Abyssal Blessing" that gives more of a dirty chug to things and finds them taking on a more Black Flag like anger. It took a few listens to distinguish "Pepper Tree" which finds itself wedged in between to other songs like an interlude. The vocals are more amorphous as this ditty doesn't fit neatly into what you might expect from a song. There is a jazzy slink to the sleazy punk narrative of "Downtown". The brings things down to a crawl with "What's Needed". It  balances melody with the angst.

This is an incredible album that gives me just what I needed , they blend the "gothy" elements in a very fluid and natural manner similar to how Atriarch does this with metal. Each listen the more hard core emoish parts grew on me. It's one of those albums that becomes more enriched the further you dig into its grave. I'll give it a 10 no problem. Worth your time for sure if you like dark and heavy music, these guys got the balance right without trying to hard.


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