BARONESS — Purple (review)

BARONESS — Purple album cover Album · 2015 · Stoner Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3/5 ·
bartosso
They only brought their shield...

Even though there's some charm to the claim that Purple is in fact a blend of the first two Baroness releases - Red Album and Blue Record - there's not much truth to it in terms of how the album actually sounds. Not gonna argue about the way colors blend, but sound-wise, Purple is first and foremost a step forth from Yellow & Green, a step towards accessibility.

And yet, some elements of the old Baroness sound have remained largely untouched - quite distinctive, shouted although less aggressive, hardcore vocals and pounding rhythmic sludge riffs to name just two. It has never been a very niche band to begin with but they had enough personality going for them - especially their baroque pop sensibilities - to stand out from the post metal crowd. What's always made them somewhat unique, was their ability to mix the American punk background with strong interest for art-rock and adventurous, post metal experiments. Often reminiscent of Mastodon - here more than ever before - Baroness has always been different enough to avoid unflattering remarks in regards to their artistic identity.

Purple is a very focused post-metal record, way more focused than its predecessor, and therefore it has never overstayed its welcome. Still, the streamlined nature of the album exposes the band's leanings towards skillful, yet often banal, songwriting. While by no means deprived of charm and creativity, Purple feels shallow and definitely more suited for a brief love affair than a long-lasting relationship.
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more than 2 years ago
I always love the artwork. But yeah, my overall impression is that this is a power rock album. That's how I feel the music can be described. Good thing it's only 42 minutes long.
bartosso wrote:
more than 2 years ago
Thanks. I loved Try to disappear and Shock me at first, but as a whole the album feels one-dimensional. The artwork though... really awesome.
more than 2 years ago
The final sentence: very well-stated.

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