Texan duo Pinkish Black originally formed in 2005 as a three piece doom/jazz project called The Great Tyrant; however the tragic suicide of bassist Tommy Atkins in 2010 put a halt to the production of the band’s first album. Remaining two members Daron Beck and Jon Teague continued under the moniker Pinkish Black, producing music that refuses to be pigeonholed into anything genre specific. Fusing synth, industrial, doom and Krautrock, Pinkish Black are certainly not afraid to break the mould and latest opus Bottom of the Morning (Relapse) depicts their visionary approach to music.
This is not an album that resonates instantly; the complexities require time and thought but once deciphered come with great reward. Predominantly synth based, hypnotic swirls of sound consume the record, alongside monotone chant style vocals, creating mystery and intrigue. ‘Brown Rainbow’ radiates a horror movie soundtrack vibe with unsettling keyboards, while ‘Special Dark’ explores their more industrial side with a thumping bass line and clattering of harsh cymbals. ‘I’m All Gone’ is ethereal and hypnotic, drawing upon a more gothic influence. Instrumental conclusion ‘The Master is Away’ demonstrates a mesmerising juxtaposition of fuzzy distorted bass, psychedelic synth and elevating melodies. The variety of influences imbued and unorthodox approach to music is what makes Bottom of the Morning a fascinating record, however the vocals do start to wear thin after a few tracks, eventually, unfortunately, bordering on the monotonous.
Pinkish Black clearly approach their music with intelligence and progressive creativity, and Bottom of the Morning evidently embodies that, nevertheless a great deal of patience is required to really appreciate the multifaceted elements that form their soundscape.
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