Music Reviews

Artist: Brian M. Clark (@)
Title: Songs From The Empty Places Where People Killed Themselves
Format: 12"
Label: Discriminate Audio (@)
Rated: *****
On looking at the title, my first impression was, 'well this should be a complete downer.' Here's how the label describes it: 'each song is an attempt at evoking a different suicide scenario and is named for the location in which the imagined suicide has taken place. To achieve this aim, Clark's compositions range from gloomy organ arrangements, to tempo-shifting heavy metal tracks, to echoey solo-piano works, and even frenetic multi-instrumental compositions with a feel of early 20th Century Modernism.' I'm not sure if knowing the background of the imaginary(?) rooms makes a difference, but there is certainly a kind of melancholy that runs through this album. This is an aural depiction of the sadness that brings people to the point where there really seems to be no other way out. There are melodies of organs and piano that weave their way throughout making it almost peaceful. There is one notable exception, which is track 3, entitled 'High school library, gymnasium and cafeteria (A fat nerd finally brings his guns to school.)' In this one, the anger is almost palpable. The guitar is harsh and determined. Overall this is an interesting album and takes on the subject matter in a much more interesting manner than I expected. I especially applaud the instrumental approach rather than just going for the easy way out with vocals or samples. This is a one sided 12' that comes with a download card for the album plus two bonus tracks with a total running time of 23 minutes. This is limited to 500 copies.

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