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HARDWARES

BEASTMILK

Climax

(Svart)

Reviewed by : David Perri
Rating : 9.0

Wholly inspired by the brand of darkness that encases the lands of KATATONIA and KILLING JOKE circa its mind-altering Night Time, Helsinki's BEASTMILK understands, fully, that rage and despondence are the but different sides of the same coin, as the lonely frozen moons of DARKTHRONE so nostalgically attest and confirm. With Climax, its debut full-length, Beastmilk has written what is one of the most immediately listenable melancholic records since Katatonia's Viva Emptiness was released a decade ago, and that's not hyperbole: in a 2013 that has seen an absurd number of candidates for album of the year, Climax has stood out through the affecting qualities only grey days can bring, this LP a well-written testament to urban alienation and a sense of generalized malaise that draws heavily from Manchester circa 1980 and then hints at a vaguely familiar, post-apocalyptic future where Beastmilk is the house band at only the bleakest of underground goth clubs.

JOY DIVISION's death disco and THE CHURCH's blackened spires are also huge catalysts here, and Beastmilk effectively uses its obviously very deep record collection to its advantage, this group the most elite students THE CURE's Robert Smith ever schooled (i.e. the album is called Seventeen Seconds, and if you've never heard it you must immediately). Isolating Climax's highlights is a useless endeavor due to this album's strength and fortitude, but let us speak highly of 'You Are Now Under Our Control' and its soaring chorus, an apex moment that is wide-eyed, electric and cathartic, Beastmilk knowing exactly where it wants to take the listener and how to get there, everything else be damned. The only negative element associated with this project is the terrible band name but, hey, VOMITORY and GOATWHORE aren't exactly tributes to poetry either, and they're favorites around these parts.




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