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Blacklab - In a Bizarre Dream

In a Bizarre Dream
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 05 October 2022, 3:26 PM

Doom/Stoner Metal became a reality when acts as CATHEDRAL, TROUBLE and KYUSS started to recover the psychedelic, organic and filthy appeal of the past into their musical works. It’s obvious that such a musical path existed due the footprints left by BLACK SABBATH on its three first albums, but these three (and some others) took the genres boundaries far than they previously were. And it’s good to see the genre evolving in many countries, as can be heard on the work of the Japanese duet BLACKLAB on their latest release, “In a Bizarre Dream”.

The band uses a filthy and organic approach on the genre, something that’s common and it’s not hard to deal with. But on this ‘noisy’ approach (that’s, as said before, is usual to Stoner Metal acts), the band’s music shows weight and life, even with such musical model used so many times before (the band isn’t rewriting things), with slow paced tempos and abrasive guitars, and agonizing screams contrasting with clan voices that fill all the spaces. Once more: the band’s music isn’t something new, but’s full of energy, and with many nasty hooks, what makes the duet’s work high above the norm. The sonority of “In a Bizarre Dream” is really abrasive, organic and filthy, respecting the models of sound qualities used to the genre (with overloaded distortion on the guitars). But no one can deny that things were recorded, mixed and mastered in a way that allows the band to sound in a Stoner Metal way, but in a form that everything can be understood. And the band has Laetitia Sadier as guest on “Crows, Sparrows and Cats”.

The album is really a very good choice for the fans, especially due songs as “Cold Rain” (a ‘sabbathic’ lesson of weight with a psychedelic and seductive feeling, with very good vocals that goes from harsh tunes to silk ones), “Abyss Woods” (this one is filled with many melodic hooks under the abrasiveness of the guitar riffs), “Dark Clouds” (a shorter song that shows some Punk Rock and Hardcore influences due the speed of the riffs), “Evil II” (a deeper and melancholic song that has many resemblances with BLACK SABBATH’s early works, but with a very good set of melodies), “Lost” (that brings some elements of the 90’s Stoner Rock that can be found in acts as MONSTER MAGNET, with a solid and strong work from bass guitar and drums), and “Monochrome Rainbow”, the right set to start with the album.

The work of BLACKLAB has a clear tendency of growing more and more in the future. But for now, taste “In a Bizarre Dream”, and enjoy it!

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 7

4 Star Rating

1. Cold Rain
2. Abyss Woods
3. Dark Clouds
4. Evil I
5. Evil II
6. Crows, Sparrows and Cats
7. Lost
8. In a Bizarre Dream
9. Monochrome Rainbow
10. Collapse
Yuko Morino - Guitars, Vocals
Chia Shiraishi - Drums
Record Label: Independent


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