Bleakness Life at a Standstill LP
What can you say, the French love their cold goth post-punk and so do I. From the same label as the excellent SYNDROME 81 is BLEAKNESS with their second LP, Life at a Standstill. While the former plays it straight with the post-punk iciness, BLEAKNESS is far more dramatic, opening the album with a lone piano that gives the proceedings a dramatic flair that permeates throughout the album. The vocals especially stand out; they have a pained warble that feels authentic. While all ten tracks are solid, two stand out above the rest: halfway point “Refuse Their Reality,” a hypnotic spoken word deathrocker that has an evil BAUHAUS vibe, and “19061924,” a beautiful and surprisingly sweeping instrumental that, if pushed, could almost go into MOGWAI or even PELICAN-like territory. I’ve got to say, it really left me wanting more of that sound. I’ll be excited to hear whatever these guys come up with next.