Saturday, July 04, 2020

Jehnny Beth - To Love Is To Live [Caroline International. / Universal]

Coming in lately from the Caroline International label is "To Love Is To Live", the new solo album by Savages singer and center piece Jehnny Beth which has been put out on the circuit on June 12th, 2k20 after being delayed - like many other releases - due to the COVID-19 madness that hit the world. Announced on these pages via the official video for "Flower" in early May, 2k20 the full length piece holds a menu of 11 brand new songs, starting out with the cinematic, haunted Spoken Word meets vintage broadway piece "I Am" which epicly sets the tone for things to come, followed by the intense, brutal and Industrial-leaning "Innocence" which is anything but innocent even when it becomes more melodic in the chorus part - and therefore a reason to buy this one album without further exploration - whilst "We Will Sin Together" provides more large scale vocal drama atop modernistic, urban beats, not without providing a kind of silver lining and a feel of dawn evoked by carefully arranged piano motifs. "A Place Above" comes in as a short poetry skit of highly romantic, emotional and touching nature, "I Am Man" somewhat evokes memories of high octane Alternative Rock groups like Skunk Anansie mathematically squared, "The Rooms" employs collage'esque, partly even score'esque Field Recordings paired up with smokey, classy Bar Jazz pianos as a backdrop for the most tender, natural ballad on "To Love Is To Live" before "Heroine" speeds things up heavily for advanced, yet once again haunted PostPunk dancefloors, driving each and everyone crazy with its highly detailed, cut up synth motif and multilayered vocal arrangements. Furthermore "How Could You" is pure anger and insanity channeled alongside the lines of ever spiralling synth modulations and a seductive, kerosene-fueled Future Industrial vibe, "French Countryside" harks back to full on piano-led romanticism and the final cut "Human" waves goodbye on a dark'ish, brooding and distorted Alternative / PostPunk meets late night Jazz vibe. Great stuff. Recommended for a reason.


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