Baroness "Yellow & Green" Album Review — 5 out of 5 stars
Tue, 14 Aug 2012 12:27:39
Every once in a while, an album comes along and galvanizes rock music for the better.
It's usually off the beaten path. It usually doesn't fall in line with what the zeitgeist is currently embracing. It usually causes some head-scratching. It's usually unequivocally revolutionary for the artist behind it and the larger cultural sphere within which it exists. In heavy music, we've seen this happen with Tool's Ænima, Mastodon's Leviathan, Nine Inch Nails's The Downward Spiral and Metallica's Master of Puppets.
For 2012, that record is Baroness's two-disc opus, Yellow & Green. While maintaining the intrinsic heaviness of past records, the group dives deeper down the rabbit hole crafting poetic, poignant, and powerful psychedelic soundscapes that crush while they captivate. "Take My Bones Away" cruises on a chugging riff, airy lead, and potent percussive backdrop. The hook emanates raw emotion, while the guitars mirror that exorcism fittingly. "March to the Sea" commences with a swirling clean melody before drifting into more distorted bliss, while "Cocainium" is every bit as paranoid and haunting as the title may or may not imply. That's the beauty of Baroness. They keep their cards close the chest and don't reveal too much. Mystique is a lost art, but its return is welcome.
Just when you think you've got the band peg, they slide through a buzzing haze on the elegy for youth, and album standout, "Back Where I Belong". The sense of longing comes across on a literary scale as vocals echo effusively with a sense of regret. The tempo reaches another highpoint on the starkly heavy "Sea Lungs".
On the second half of the journey, "Board Up The House" proves eerily comforting in its psychosis, "Psalms Alive" builds brilliantly into sonic madness, while "I'll Forget Thee, Lowcountry" might be the most gorgeous conclusion to any album in recent memory.
From top to bottom, you have to experience Yellow & Green. It's a landmark in Baroness's career and a landmark for rock music. This is like Pink Floyd's The Wall or The Dark Side of the Moon for the Facebook generation…
Have you heard Yellow & Green yet?