Violet Cold – Desperate Dreams – Album Review
Listening to the intro to Violet Cold’s “Intro: Lonely Universe” sets you up for something truly unique right away. I was listening to the album for the first time late at night…and the forlorn-tones and desolate atmosphere of the beautiful melody in this intro made for one of those real ‘late night’ feelings that only song many songs can really set the mood for. It’s subtle…and apparent very quickly to me that things on this album could potentially be about to switch into an even wilder ride; Violet Cold is after all, considered to be Euphoric Black Metal…and if I know anything about Black Metal of our modern day – things could just loud at any given moment.
Songs like “La Petite Mort” would be a perfect example of what I mean. Though it starts in nearly a pop-like vein – it isn’t long before Violet Cold springs into a whole other gear and begins to flex the growled-screams and storming drumbeats that pound through the backing of the track while the synth takes the lead. Complex by design…there’s definitely skill here that you can hear; music like this is a difficult one to really mix well…and I honestly love what Violet Cold has done here. I might not be the world’s biggest ‘metal’ fan overall by some-stretch…but Black Metal has managed to capture my interest many times…much of the reason being the incredible ways that it tends to borrow from post-rock/space-rock/noise-rock as well – all genres of which I love.
And I think that with songs like “La Petite Mort” and “Light Years Separate Us From Home” you can really hear that influence of those other genres…there are words still here in Violet Cold; but what I really love about them, especially on the mix of “Light Years Separate Us From Home” is how they fit right into the music as a virtual instrument and sound themselves. It’s extraordinarily well-done and textured; almost like they’re somehow screaming whispers. I’m not sure I even really realized you could scream a whisper before…but here we are! Of course I’m kidding – it is completely the genius-mixing done to bring the music/vocals into one on Violet Cold’s record that makes it that way – and it truly does sound awesome.
I’m thinking “Desperate Dreams” might have been one of my favourites right off the bat, no question. The guitar-work is incredible…”Desperate Dreams” has a more empowering-feel to the music and comes a little closer to the nature of space-rock as these sounds find themselves straight-out into the atmosphere and beyond. The chorus-ish part of this song is bright, bold and beautiful…the contrasting-sounds of light and dark all battle for dominance throughout “Desperate Dreams” and every moment has been worth the journey in taking. A real highlight on the album for me – there’s no doubt that this was a title-worthy track; whether you’re a fan of Black Metal straight-up, or bands closer to like…Mogwai or This Will Destroy You! – you’d love a song like this every bit as much as I do. Incredible emotion in “Desperate Dreams” and incredible skill in the writing to make it that way – 100% awesome.
The wild, cascading crescendos of “Endless Journey” make this track standout quickly as well; it makes for a solid follow-up to “Desperate Dreams” – though I’ll fully admit, I might have maybe just gone to repeat “Desperate Dreams” a couple more times through before allowing the playlist to continue on to “Endless Journey.” Shhhh – that’s just between you and me! Once I did get to “Endless Journey” I felt that tortured-atmosphere of Black Metal shine through a little more on this track…a little more pain & aggression in the melody of this tune. It makes a tremendous transition into “Stargasm” which I thought was a real continuation from where “Endless Journey” leaves off and naturally flows straight into the beginning of this next tune. “Stargasm” really does have that space-like feel to its widespread-atmosphere once again…the synth is a constant-one that drives the melody…it nearly sounds like guitar…it could be guitar with a synth-effect…but whatever it is takes the song into a real otherworldly melody that is both bright and beautiful as the stars while remaining just as dark as a black hole.
“I See The Air You Breathe” was even interesting just to think about from its title-alone – I thought the imagery in that idea gave me something cool to think about as this song begins its euphoric, amped-up energy to bring the record to a close, more or less. There’s still an “Outro” to follow, but before you’re at the final end…you get one killer final display of the best of what Violet Cold is doing straight away – “I See The Air You Breathe” is a vibrant display of serious dynamics that burst as brightly as fireworks do. Structured much the same as they are as well – each of these bright synth-melodies come shining through the background grind of relentless-drumbeats and the familiar, far-away growls of the vocals. A final switch in the final thirty-seconds brings “I See The Air You Breathe” to a crashing ending.
Proving once again at the end, that the modern-day genre of Black Metal is truly one that involves real ART – the “Outro: Euphoria” takes us back to where we started, on the beautiful piano…just for a final moment on less than a minute in length. But this would be what you call ‘full-circle’ – at by the time you get to the ending of Violet Cold’s new album – you’ll instantly want to keep it going just by keeping it on repeat; it flows perfectly from start to finish and from finish to start. If you’re not careful – you might never realize when it actually ends…you might get caught in the loop and just start listening to Violet Cold for forever…which really, would be a pretty kickass problem to have!
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