RIYL: Squid, Daughters, Hella
Label: Rough Trade
It’s practically impossible to pigeonhole a band like Black Midi. Their comprehensive musical chops have taken them through the jungles of math rock, the bogs of post punk, experimental noise and back again, but noone sounds quite like them. The London 4-piece pounced into 2019 with a fully-realized sound, putting out the critically-acclaimed Schlagenheim and never looking back. This is a band that defies traditional harmonies for the less-explored tunnels and swamps from punk’s more eclectic subgenres. I don’t know what to call it, but I like it.
The two available tracks are a prime example of Black Midi’s range as musicians. John L is a frenetic whirlwind of string arrangements, pounding piano hits, crackling guitars and surreal spoken word. It’s frightening, it’s exhilarating, it’s challenging. It’s classic black midi. Despair, on the other hand, is carried by a simple acoustic guitar and chamber pop structure. If you took Georgie Greep’s singular croon off the track, this one could have easily been mistaken for a lost Bibio single. Again, the range for this band is f-ing wild. Who even knows what awaits our ears with the rest of the album.
Rough Trade has copies of the limited pic disc after the ‘buy’ link. No idea the quantity made for those, but I wouldn’t wait long. Their fanbase has exploded over the last few years and they’ve got a hunger for vinyl. Check out the music video for John L below and grab a pic disc after the ‘buy’ link. There’s also an option for black vinyl and an accompanying flexi disc that you can grab HEREÂ and a package with a comic book HERE, but I imagine the picture discs will sell out first.
The armory of additional instruments on Cavalcade includes (just to name a few) cello, sax, grand piano, accordion, violin, trombone, two bouzoukis, a late 19th Century zither called a Marxophone, flute, lap steel, synths, and yes, a wok.
Spend some time with Cavalcade and youâ€™ll acknowledge black midi are back with the biggest of bangs.
Listen on Spotify
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive