Sometimes, something comes along, and it truly captures a time, or a place, or a feeling. It doesn’t need to be expressed through words, or literature, or even any visual markers. Its very essence speaks to you, takes you, and makes you really think about everything around you.
It could be the way a piece of music reminds you of a person, or a relationship perhaps. Maybe it forces you out of your comfort zone, and into territory you’ve never been before. Possibly it forces you to stop, and take note of just what we, as a race, are doing to our planet, and will encourage a deeper thought process on just how much we damage the very place we live, by the thing that we do.
Well, the debut album by French band BRUIT ≤ does exactly that. More than just a collection of songs, this is a musical monologue, a wakeup call, to see just what’s been done, before it’s too late. When I came to this incredible work of art, initially I was thinking, well, its four songs, it’s an EP more than it is an album. I was expecting structured songs, verse, chorus, verse, with a beginning, middle and an end. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
It dawned on me by the third track that this wasn’t just a random series of instrumental set pieces, but so much more. It’s actually a progressive story, told through music, over the course of the whole album. It doesn’t need long passages of dialog, as the story is told eloquently, via the music alone. Yes, on one track, there is a small narrative passage, and in another a short burst of dialog, but for all intent and purpose, this just short of forty minutes of emotional, thought provoking music. It’s been expertly designed to create a response, without being heavy handed, or overly abrasive in the process.
I could go into detail, and dissect the whole thing, and speak about each individual track independently, but I think that if you’re looking for an experience, a truly unique aural experience, then the best thing to do would be to source this out, and listen to it for yourself.
It isn’t heavy, you aren’t getting death metal vocal, and thunderous blast beats of drumming. What you are getting is a sonic experience, by this post-rock outfit. It’s designed to make you think harder about our environment, and to take note of the natural world. It’s about the destruction we’ve caused, and still cause, trying to further our own needs.
The whole experience is so beautifully captured, and its emotional attachment really takes hold…
It does remind me of two other projects I’ve reviewed over recent months, and those are Witnesses, and Lament Cityscape. The tone is ambient, and reminiscent of a movie soundtrack. It has an eerie, supernatural euphoria, which surrounds everything, and this never really drops off. There are light and airy moments, especially over the first two tracks, and it’s especially noteworthy that it feels like a summer’s day in the countryside. It feels weightless, and at peace with the world.
This changes over the course of the second track, and by track three there’s a far more somber tone to it all. This is where things really begin to invoke a feeling of time and destruction. The added beauty of this whole venture, is that nothing is rushed, and it gives us, as the listener, time to reflect on the world, and what we’re doing to it.
Track four, The Machine is Burning, really pushes the sense of despair, and the lightness of the opening is long gone, replaced with a darker feel completely. By the midway point, it’s truly thunderous. It has a dark pulse running through, destroying all in its path.
As a whole, this is a wakeup call, whether it’s heard or not is a different matter completely. The whole experience is so beautifully captured, and its emotional attachment really takes hold. To have this level of accomplishment on a debut is very rare, but just shows just how competent the artists are, and seeing where this journey takes them next will be very interesting to follow.
In a time when everything is so disposable, and everyone wants to be heard over the chaos of everything else, this little sapling of hope in the dirt, truly is a beauty to behold.
Scribed by: Lee Beamish