Bad Powers - Bad Powers - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Bad Powers - Bad Powers

by Steve Reynolds Rating:7 Release Date:2012-09-18

Bad Powers - who the fuck are they? A four-piece out of Brooklyn and this is their self-titled debut album. The band aren't fresh-wet-behind-the-ears musical virgins; they carry with them some pretty notable experience and knowledge. Comprising of former Made Out of Babies members Matthew Egan, Brendan Tobin and Eric Cooper, they have brought in Megan Tweed of Seattle band The Family Curse on vocals.

The record has a pulsating beginning with 'New bruises', with stripped, bare-bones bass and goth-inspired drum patterns. Tweed launches right into the vocal, switching between Siouxsie-style singing and a shriek akin to something from a death metal band. It's a caustic and quite darkly frightening opening gambit. The onslaught continues with the driving 'Hit Sniffing Dog', and the rather low-key production adds some familiarities to Kim Gordon vocals from their 'Thousand Leaves' LP. They definitely have a grunge feel to them and, mixed with the whip and snarl of Big Black, it makes for an uneasy but pleasing listen.

The haunting, fragmented cello lead on 'Eves and Eyes' is a slow and seedy slither as the strings drop in and out, complimenting the guitar perfectly. It's got some hefty guts, weighing in at nearly six minutes. 'Black Alf' puts Tweed out on her own again, the pummelling drums sitting perfectly against her doomy and belligerent vocal delivery. Tweed has the ability to switch her vocal style, adding some real value to the album with her multi-octave delivery. They keep it eerie with 'Chineseish', but this time show a few shades of what make Cocteau Twins so important to alternative bands of the modern era.

This album really pulls its influences from the dark side of music, mainly swarming around gothic rock and dark metal. I can imagine Bad Powers being holed up in some scary castle up on a hill putting this together, with only a bunch of bats and creaky floor-boards to keep them company, therefore immersing them in character to deliver such a powerfully dank album.

I like this album; it's pretty straight ahead with its guitar, drum, bass setup but the focus on all things nocturnal and blackened makes for an captivating and charming listen.

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