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Bonjour Tristesse - Your Ultimate Urban Nightmare

Bonjour Tristesse
Your Ultimate Urban Nightmare
by Katharine Hassett at 08 July 2018, 11:37 AM

Starting in 2008 in Aichach, Bavaria, Germany, BONJOUR TRISTESSE is a one man band that began initially as a more depressive black metal act. On his second venture out, Nathaniel goes in a more atmospheric direction. The album immediately opens with intensity, fierce blast beats and melancholic tremolo picking punctuated with dreamlike melodies . "Your Ultimate Urban Nightmare" is as monstrous as it is beautiful with a bit of an interlude midway through that layers many hypnotic guitars over one another. "Like the Scythe in the Ripened Field" is a groovy, depressing track that employs spoken word and clean guitars that really help add to a hollow feeling. The tormenting screams are on par with the level of dread the passages of pure black metal evoke.

Things are toned down on "Alienation," coupling depressing melodies with spoken word and shreaks of anguish. Nathaniel clearly has mastered layering guitars of varying tones and it shows on this track. "Another Bullshit Night in Suck City" is a piano interlude with samples of a moderately busy city. The emotional intensity builds throughout the instrumental and quickly calms, sirens in the distance. "The Act of Laughing in a World Once Beautiful Now Dying" employs more melancholy and eases into more depressing chords and chaotic screams. "Blacktop Prison" is another piano interlude that has heavier synth and another sample of a city. "Wavebreaker" is certainly not a surf rock song and begins instantly with blasts and bleak chords, sprinkled with breakdowns with spoken vocals. The push for the atmospheric sound is shown in this song as well with more beautifully layered guitars.

The album comes to a close with much of the same elements employed throughout. BONJOUR TRISTESSE's second outing proves to be an all around solid one but fans of this genre may not find anything new here. Give it a try if you are identify with the translation of the band name, which is "hello sadness."

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Your Ultimate Urban Nightmare
2. Like the Scythe in the Ripened Field
3. Alienation
4. Another Bullshit Night in Suck City
5. One of the Ghostfolk
6. The Act of Laughing in a World Once Beautiful Now Dying
7. Blacktop Prison
8. Wavebreaker
9. The End of the World
Nathaniel - All instruments, Vocals
Record Label: Lifeforce Records


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Edited 31 January 2023

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