Blaqk Audio‘s new record, ‘Beneath The Black Palms’, is a tart collection of tracks that could’ve been plucked right from the conception of such a dizzying genre, it feels that groundbreaking.
From the go, this release is like Marmite. ‘Consort’ and ‘Zipper Don’t Work’ are equally retro, blotchy with fuzzed-out beats and villainous vocals. There’s certainly an acquired taste feel here, and as ‘1948’ buzzes into being, it’s clear that this tone doesn’t fade.
Each track this far is obscure in its own right, wonderfully displaying the downright fearlessness of the band. They bring the traditionally strange elements of electronic music to the forefront of today’s scene and don’t care who hears it.
‘1948’ is a little slower and more pensive than those before it, but with the plucky ‘A Distant Light’ to follow, ‘Beneath The Black Palms’ is proving to be quite the experimental listen. The shock of the abstract dulls a little by ‘Burnt Babies Fear The Fire’ though, as the odd vocal tones and compressed beats feel more established by now.
Any confusion or apprehension towards this record stems from a misunderstanding of the genres that it is so chaotically built upon. For sure, it’s a bizarre release in its entirety, with ‘Fish Bite’ bringing a playful vibe that’s otherwise absent here, but there are drawings from styles everyone’s familiar with – the rock, the punk, the pop – and Blaqk Audio should be credited for breathing a new life into them.
You don’t have to personally be a fan of this type of record to appreciate it for its adventure. ‘Bird Sister’ is a powerful track regardless of your taste, and ‘Tired Eyes’ is a glorious portrayal of wondrous craftsmanship. By no means is the eleven-track a simple addition to your collection, but it’s a wild one if you fancy something a little out of your comfort zone.