Friday, December 13, 2019

Strvngers : " Death is the Only Way Out"

"Amor/ Noir" was one of the decade's best albums so the bar is high for this one. Echoes of it still haunt this one. The biggest shift comes from having a different theme than the "Amor/Noir"   There is a more electronic feel. It's spacious mix with very clean synth sounds. More emotive than your average dark wave band,if you compared it to the last album  the first few songs fall closer in the sonic zip-code  to modern dark wave while still shunning the conventions of the genre. "Frailty" is more up beat once again picking up where the last album left off.  The slick production of today's pop is sets the stage for sounds that pull from the 80s. The vocals hooks are dialed in on this one and everything click into place perfectly, shedding the shadow of the previous album. Rock guitars come in on "Misery" before the beat carries the song way.  Suicide is once again the topic with "Prison of Flesh" .  Albums can be heavy in a the metallic sense , or heavy sonically, this one is heavy lyrically.

"976 Evil" more on the metal side when it builds up from the more hip hop feel. It's a weird song though not out of the range of what you might expect from these guys. What is a much different feel is the music to "Crucifixxx". It owes more to modern electronica, but works really well. When the chorus comes in we are back in more familiar territory.  The beat is hard to to dance to as I type this.  "Necormancer" deals with death in a more Halloween manner. "La Petit Mort" gets darker than Halloween. It is the kind of pulse that I want from them. The vocals work well with this groove. "Swan Dive" finds the pace picking up , as they get more aggressive.  "My Black Queen" is kinda like their "Closer" , a song they covered on their last ep. Though there is more atmosphere in this one than popular Nine Inch Nails song. It begins to work more off the chant of "I'd sacrifice my life, I would die for you".

My favorite song on here is "Intransigent" . It pulls from both metal and hip hop. This is about suicide but from another perspective. There is no way a suicide heavy album like this would have floated in the 80s, based off all the trouble Ozzy and Judas Priest go into.  "Futility" is more of a loner anthem and less overtly death worshiping. The title track that closes the album  is an ode to suicide, that finds a smooth croon pondering  this. This one might be the most emotionally honest song on the album.One thing this album has in common with "Amor . After a few listens the album grew on me and I can round it up to a 10.


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