Album: To the Loveless
Artist: Boom Boom Satellites
Continuing on from Thursday’s review of Embrace, I decided more BBS would be in order for this week’s MOTW. Because of how this band had just completely dropped off my radar at some point before 2009, I completely missed this album (which came out in 2010), only seeking it out and hearing most of these songs for the first time after hearing Embrace. But damn, I wish I’d known this music was out there this whole time. While the ratio of great-to-meh songs isn’t quite as good here as it is on Embrace, the ones that ARE great are right up there with Embrace’s best. As my favorite track on the album, “Drain” exemplifies this. Music just doesn’t get more badass than this.
The heavy guitar riffs used throughout (but most notably at 2:30) and the insane drum work are what really give this song its power. The chaotic, at times disjointed delivery of the lyrics, as well as the content of the lyrics themselves, convey a feeling of literally losing track of reality. The video reflects this, as well; it’s almost epilepsy-inducing in its use of shifting, flashing light patterns and unsteady camera work, creating this chaotic monochrome lens through which you watch the band perform the song. (Speaking of the video, I’d understand if that crazy visual style is off-putting, or even hard to watch, for some; in that case, just ignore the video and listen to the music).
I would describe this song as “electronic/rock fusion, with emphasis on the rock”, which sort of makes it the opposite number of “Drifter”. Those three songs together (“Drain,” “Drifter”, and “Embrace”) form the Triforce of Awesome when it comes to BBS, as my three favorite songs of theirs. They represent a neat overview in a way, too: you’ve got an intense, more hard-rock flavored song, a fast-paced, more electronic flavored song, and a slow, epic, symphonic styled piece.
Other standout tracks from the album are the hard-rockin’ “Lock Me Out”, the unusual “Undertaker” (at first the “talking” portions just seemed weird, but they grew on me because of how interesting the lyrics are, and the song’s refrain just soars), melancholy electronic piece “All in a Day”, and the slower, beautiful “Stay.”