Artist Spotlight

Review: The Black Ships, “Dead Empires”

No Comments 6 December 2015

Review: The Black Ships, “Dead Empires”

Dead Empires marks the return of dark and twisty dreampop. The heavy bass-driven melodies and soulful delivery allow The Black Ships to steer themselves into deep musical waters.”

Artist: The Black Ships

Album: Dead Empires

Genre: Shoegaze/Dreampop

RIYL: Bauhaus, New Order, Jesus and Mary Chain, Morrissey

The Black Ships Dead Empires

The title track of Saratoga Springs quartet The Black Ships new album, Dead Empires, comes thundering out of the gate with a heady confidence and heavy bass-driven beat. It’s a startling contrast to the multitudes of singer-songwriter folk rock that pervades the current musical landscape, and it’s a welcome throwback to the heyday of a British shoegaze/goth scene that included the likes of Lush, Suede and Blur. But The Black Ships have taken a darker romantic turn and turn on the dramatic drive of bass driven rock that falls easily in line with The Cure or Bauhaus.

The band is at its best on Dead Empires when it’s pushing a mercurial melody and driving beat with assertiveness. Again, it’s worth mentioning the title track as a wonderful introduction into what this quartet has to offer musically. Another strong track is the heavy duty “Sarin,” a quick favorite that goes straight for the sonic assault. “Twice Born” sounds like it dropped right off an album soundtrack sandwiched in between New Order and the Jesus and Mary Chain. The gorgeously dark and satisfying “When the Rain Falls” is another strong contender, a slow burning and dreamy track that moves with swagger.

Dead Empires marks the return of dark and twisty dreampop. The heavy bass-driven melodies and soulful delivery allow The Black Ships to steer themselves into deep musical waters. The dense and supremely opulent sound captured on this record is a distinct departure from what’s currently trending in music, and that is a very good thing. To produce such a singular signature sound that more than holds its own melodically and creatively shows forward-thinking music making that draws from some of the very best (and highly prolific) artists of the past. This is a trend that will come around again, and The Black Ships will be leading the charge.



The Black Ships website: http://www.theblackships.net/

 

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