Black Light Burns
I am: Wolfpack
What has happened to the world of music when a ex-member of Limp Bizkit has found his way into my stereo? I’d almost rather not even tell you that Black Light Burns is the brainchild of Wes Borland, maybe then you’d give it a more fair listen. Instead, I’ll just throw it out there, let it sink in and hope that you (like me) can forget that little fact and press play on Cruel Melody.
BLB began as a introspective solo project — Borland in his bedroom, basically — but evolved into a full-fledged industrial-tinged electronic band (with drummer extraordinaire Josh Freese on board, along with Nine Inch Nails bassist and album producer, Danny Lohner) thanks to the subtle urging of Trent Reznor whose input on early demo recordings was to the effect of crank it up.
Reznor’s influence, or perhaps the presence and production tinkering of Danny Lohner, is all over this stunning debut. BLB sounds a lot like Nine Inch Nails. Think of them as NIN-lite. Whispered vocals that break out into painful, searing choruses on tracks like “Mesopotamia” make the comparison inevitable, but lucky for Borland he doesn’t sink into the dirge too deeply. “I Am Where It Takes Me” is a haunting, beat driven duet with Concrete Blonde’s Johnette Napolitano. Not only is the ballad a gorgeous standout on an otherwise uptempo, testosterone driven release, but the inclusion of the amazing Napolitano is enough to make me take notice!
Closing the album is an 8 minute instrumental outro that neatly closes the book on a debut that should forever forgive Borland for his nu-metal sins.
Black Light Burns: www.blacklightburns.com