BLACK MIDI – ” Schlagenheim “

Posted: June 25, 2019 in ALBUMS, MUSIC
Tags: , , ,

When a Black Midi song blares, it’s like an impossible mountain climb—as soon as you find a ledge to grasp, it’s an electrifying triumph, but once you’ve gripped it, it crumbles off and you’re left hanging above a frightening abyss. With Black Midi, it’s all about the pursuit. You’re on a mission to find a more bewildering moment than the last. Their unconventional time signatures, breakneck guitars, propulsive grooves, Geordie Greep’s eccentric vocals and Morgan Simpson’s exceptionally agile drumming results in these devious, indeterminate rock squalls that make them so enamoring. Following a much-hyped run at this year’s South By Southwest, Black Midi are unleashing their debut album, “Schlagenheim”, via Rough Trade Records on June 21st. It’s misshapen, unpredictable, and at times murky, other times freakishly precise. It’s an experimental rock carousel with both a charming craftiness and menacing grandiosity. When Black Midi were on tour in Paris. they spoke about the band’s songwriting process with Geordie Greep, their slippery sound and the polarizing reactions to their music.

It may be hard to write about, but Schlagenheim is a record you feel more so than anything else. Case in point: First track “953” features one of the hardest hitting lead guitar riffs in recent memory, an opening salvo that makes you want to drop everything. Within mere seconds of hitting play on their debut album, Geordie Greep and Matt Kwasniewski-Kelvin make their case as two of our most inventive contemporary guitarists, all while you try your hardest to keep time with a beat that will still elude you after 10 listens. There’s a high barrier to entry for Schlagenheim, a record by a band who refuses to meet you halfway. Pedantic and pretentious all the way through, Schlagenheim showcases why black midi are generationally great instrumentalists despite our inability to follow what they’re doing and why. Schlagenheim is like Captain Beefheart’s Trout Mask Replica in this way—it doesn’t always sound aurally pleasing, and it’s often tough to keep up, but it rewards those who try. By the end of “Ducter’s” anarchic pandemonium, you won’t know what hit you, but you’ll find yourself quickly returning to “953” for another go around of an album that showcases some of the most talented musicians around, coalescing behind an experimental, genre-less and extremely noisy sound to exceptional results. Schlagenheim is beyond weird. Schlagenheim is a legitimate one of a kind record. Schlagenheim is a masterpiece.

album ‘Schlagenheim’ is out now:

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