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Beastmilk – Climax

Becci Stanley

Triangle

As the year begins to wind down and everyone’s mind is on Christmas, what better way to blast through the festivities than with a dark and brooding gift all the way from Finland? Well its better than a lump of coal by anyone’s standards.

Opening track Death Reflects Us almost sounds upbeat for a section of time with A sunny and almost pop-punk introduction before winding into a haunting and atmospheric dirge, carried expertly by vocalist Mat McNerny and his angsty choir-boy vocals contrasting starkly against the cacophony below.

Genocidal Crush and You Are Now Under Our Control revive the New Romantic era in these heavily nostalgic tracks with a slight hint of contradictory punk influences traceable in the fast finger work of the guitars and a much more audible, booming drum beat than usual, beneath the electronic metallic feel of the echoing vocals and solemn lyrics.

Nuclear Winter and Surf the Apocalypse take these dark, punk urges further transforming Beastmilk’s usual meandering, gothic tunes to a fist-thumping, heart-pumping assault that the likes of The Misfits would have killed to have written with grungy bass lines that make the heart flutter and sink, spine-tingling guitar riffs and warbling, powerful vocals that punch through the usual angst-ridden crooning of the bands releases.

Closing track Strange Attractors is a slight anti-climax in this album of two halves. Although it begins with a promising, hair-raising introduction with drums pounding like a heartbeat and single guitar chords and feedback slowly rising, it rises to the same sound that has been relayed throughout the album. There are interesting little highlights within the track that still excite the eardrums nonetheless like eerie, high-pitched, moaning vocals and dampened instruments and vocals heavily evocative of Nirvana meets The Cure and various vocalists blending together to create a layering of psychedelic meets gritty realism.

Despite a disappointing end, there is no reason why this band should be as underground as they are with the talent, diversity and utter weirdness that they display on this thoughtful and clever debut album. It is safe to say that we will be hearing a lot more about this band if this is the first offering they have relayed to us.

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