TOUCHE A MORE – ” Skyscraper “

Posted: November 3, 2017 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
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I don’t know who it was that once said “From moments of sadness, moments of destruction, moments of grief, from those moments beauty can spring forth like a rare flower that only blooms once a year in the coldest snow and darkest night.” Actually, I do know who said.

‘Stage Four’ by Touché Amoré. Lyrically it’s an album that details the treatment, suffering and final days of vocalist Jeremy Bolm’s mum, before she passed away from cancer in 2014. And what a fucking album it is. I was Completely blindsided by how emotionally raw this album is. They’ve always dealt with some heavy issues, but this one just blew me to bits. Remember last year when Sufjan Stevens released the heart-wrenchingly incredible ‘Carrie and Lowell’, an album all about his absent mum and her passing? Well, take that album, but instead of Sufjan being sombre and sad, he’s really, Really angry. That’s ‘Stage Four’. I can’t even begin to comprehend the emotional pull this album must have on all the band, but especially Bolm. The loss of a loved one is a hard and trying time for anyone, but to then be brave enough to get on stage and spill your heart out about it and how you now feel about it and all your fears and insecurities .

Just go and listen to it. Every song reveals a new unforgettable detail about Bolm’s mother’s treatment, his inner mental health and his constant wrestling with grief and depression. Bolm easily cycles through the stages of grief at least 27 times repeatedly throughout the album. Lines such as “I took inventory of what I took for granted and I ended up with more than I imagined” and “She passed away about an hour ago when you were onstage living the dream” are utterly shattering and they’re peppered throughout the whole album. There are parts of songs that Bolm sings in clean vocals, in a voice that almost sounds as if it’s on the very edge, creeping closer to completely letting go, and I was right there with him.When you listen to it, don’t you dare tell me you listened to ‘Skyscrapers’ without welling up at all. I almost blub every time I hear that song. Bolm’s uninhibited howls of pure grief at the huge climax sends shivers down my spine. That isn’t singing, it’s pure emotion and the weight of the loss washing over him, and by an easy extension me. And then her final voice message plays, and your heart is broken all over again.

It is a knockout punch of emotion, a raging sea in the midst of a storm, Please go and listen to it. Bring some tissues.

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