Saturday, May 21, 2016
Beelzefuzz - The Righteous Bloom
Aaah, Beelzefuzz are back with their sophomore release, and I couldn’t be more stoked. Obviously, I was concerned what it would sound like, which I always am when a favourite band are about to unleash a new recording. I think that’s only normal since you, as a supporter, want your main squeezes to emulate their previous work, at the very least. Any inkling shadow of a doubt I had, however, was firmly squashed. Instead, Beelzefuzz took me, and still takes me, on one of the most amazing music journeys I’ve ever had a chance to partake in. The band has gone through some changes since last time which has played a huge factor in the creation of this amazing wax. Greg Diener from Pale Divine has been brought in on lead guitar and vocals and Bert Hall from Mangog, Revelation and Against Nature is the new bass player. And their presence has allowed Dana Ortt(vocals, guitar, effects) and Darin McCloskey(drums) to create something truly celestial, yet dark and spaced out. This is music, never heard by man before.
Before playing ‘The Righteous Bloom’ for the first time, I was told it might take a few spins to grasp it since it apparently is a “difficult” album. After that first listen I shot that sentiment down right away because I loved what I heard immediately, thinking there’s nothing difficult about it at all. However, once I began writing this review I started to pull my hair in frustration. Why, you ask? Well, simply because this album is a chameleon. What I mean is that with every spin all the songs have changed character somewhat, bringing something new to the table. And I love that because it shows the beauty and the magic the band creates in full. But from a reviewing standpoint? Don’t know how many times I’ve rewritten many parts after reading them flabbergasted that my words didn’t represent the music at all. Eventually the songs fell into place and I think I found a silver lining. So here it goes, waveriders. Read on and marvel at the amazing world of Beelzefuzz and the journey of the mind and life they are about to take you on!
As we take off, ‘Nazzriff’ and ‘The Soulless’ are the catalyst and the ignition that guides us into the realm and other-worldly state of mind that Beelzefuzz wants us to experience, a journey of life, if you like. Fat riffs, thunderous bass lines, groovy and heavy-hitting drums make the entrance smooth and quick. No sooner has this new dimension closed its doors on us, when the journey really begins. Acting as a bridge between the initiation and the descent into the soul cleansing stage of this expedition, ‘Hardluck Melody’ digs deep into our souls and sits perfectly between these first two steps. ‘Rat Poison Parfait’ slowly, yet swiftly starts the process of pulling our psyche apart piece by piece. Burrowing deep within, nasty dark matters are unearthed that have been left lurking in the shadows for too long. Now the task falls on us listeners to deal with it. Hitting the bottom of the abyss – our minds – with ‘Eternal Waltz’, Beelzefuzz shines a guiding light by allowing us to mellow out, as well as giving glimmers of hope. Leveling the tempo also stops the decent and this continues in ‘Within Trance’. The only difference is that now you can feel yourself getting stronger, your resistance is not only pushing the dark matters aside. It annihilates it.
Having conquered the inner struggle, ‘Nebulous’ catapults us back into life. Soaring, floating, pushing, the song leads us on as stronger, new individuals. The title track, ‘The Righteous Bloom’ explodes in a cascade of millions emotions as the reborn – us – reenters life with clear, conscious minds. We’re in full bloom – no pun intended – and have a calmness of unknown qualities about us which heightens the sensations this new world brings. As the title implies, ‘Sanctum And Solace’ is about contentment. After absorbing the wonders of ‘The Righteous Bloom’, we are now at ease with who we are, who we’ve become. After rebirth, the end of life is drawing near but fear is gone and we embrace whatever the cycle of life throws our way. It’s time for another journey. All the preparations made during the first trip comes in full use in ‘Dying On The Vine’. A tumultuous, yet serene second adventure brings a lot of comfort as we die in the world as we know it. But despite all the preparations, uncertainty lingers since we really don’t know what lies ahead…if anything does. There is no need to worry though as the final step, ‘Peace Mind’ eases us into a new, brilliant kind of existence. It’s a place of sheer peacefulness where those of us who made it through, can forever relax and take in the peace of mind ‘The Righteous Bloom’ represents.
The band’s progressive and psychedelic leanings goes into full bloom on this, their second release. Since Greg is now taking care of the lead guitar parts as well as most of the “regular” rhythm playing, this is where Dana’s experimental side blossoms. Playing keyboards and organs with his guitar through pedals and effects, his partnership with Mr. Diener gives so many dimensions to the music that wasn’t possible before. Also, Dana’s vocal performance is beyond words. At the same time, Darin McCloskey and Bert Hall feed off their partners’ newfound freedom by holding everything together with a tight, yet relaxed and joyful rhythmical foundation that oozes class and total freedom. Oh, almost forgot…listen to Greg’s solos. They are outer-worldly and probably the best I’ve ever heard him play. Truly amazing!
To me, Beelzefuzz is a deity of unrivaled proportions in the world of music. Their brand new album, ‘The Righteous Bloom’, is an omnipresence and clearly shows that timeless, eternal music, free of any shackles or restraints, is still alive, well and very prosperous. Don’t ignore one of the best albums that has been released…ever. It’s that damned good!