02 October 2008

Bohren und der Club of Gore – Dolores


(2008, P.I.A.S.)

Today was the first time I noticed the browned, fallen leaves on the floor. They have probably been around for a while, but it was only today, as the increasingly encroaching dusk kissed a sweet goodbye to a day defined almost solely by its maudlin glaze of drizzle, that I became aware of them. At around the same time, Dolores – new album from German veterans Bohren und der Club of Gore – osculated my ears equally softly.

Once a heavy metal group, Bohren are such no longer. That recent FACT description confused this writer initially, wondering if the inordinately mellow early tracks already heard were mere preparation/false security for some form of metal meltdown a la Hyatari or John Zorn’s I.A.O. They weren’t. In fact, like a far sweeter version of Lustmord’s recently brooding [OTHER] set, the relative stillness of the music herein is likely to unsettle listeners waiting for dramatic events to unfold.

Making a fantastic soundtrack for moody walks, during which the listener may fancy himself in a TV film from the 1970s in which they sell his laugh to a humourless millionaire, plangent electric piano notes chime sonorously, solemnly, while sustained organ tones lull the unwary meanderer into near somnambulism. In fact, those listening to the album lying on a field (unlikely in this dank autumn) are likely to drowse, due to the way the albums reverie evokes such delights as Manual’s ethereally still ‘Wake’.

At an hour in length, the uniform tone of the album could frustrate, as one song ends and the next begins in similar style and tempo. Dolores is mellow music with a minimalist percussive bite that adds spice. While some grand narrative-style progression would have elevated it to the next level, this is nevertheless a lovely mood piece for those who might find themselves longing for L’Altra or Low circa 2000.

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I know it's a bit soppy and sentimental, but I like to vary my style from time to time - even if it doesn't work. I like to think this one did in places, and the album is very nice. Rather reminiscent of 'Treefingers', or () without the bombast. And not at all heavy metal. I like to reflect what the music makes me feel in the writing, rather than merely describing how it sounds. Hopefully this piece put that over to an extent, but it's clearly just the first step in what's ideally gonna be a decent bit of development.

P.S. Hi to those people who turned up here from that Chris Morris Facebook group and decided to click around. I'm clearly no Charlie Brooker, but who is?

P.P.S. Hey Warp - sort me out with some promos please. FACT sent me a copy of their Squarepusher one, which was great stuff.

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Post #200! Not that I'm counting...

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