ALBUM REVIEW: LEAD by Lead Blocks

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WRITTEN BY: Vince Barreras

This record serves as release 001 for the Label of Goods, Lead Blocks-Lead. The darkwave project from New York announced this project only at the beginning of March and released this debut a week later. NYC based artist Logan Brennan travels into the shadows to deliver a record that finds itself in between a darkwave and postpunk sound combining different synthesizer sounds and echo heavy vocals. It’s a real effective take on the genre and serves as a great debut for the project and the label. 

“Sex Knives” with its industrial electronic drum pads, Brennan’s almost inaudible vocals and chilling atmosphere set the tempo for the project. It is dark, it is washed with reverb and echo, and it is here to take the listener on a journey throughout the recesses of the artist’s mind. “Nite Duty” relies more heavily on an upbeat synth that’s much brighter than the previous track, but once the bass line kicks in, it conforms back to the shadows. The track is minimal, and subdued, but chilling. “Association” once again shows off the minimal instrumentation needed to carry this track, with a vocal palet that does all the talking for you. “Perfect Hair Forever,” comes in at an eight minute run time that begins utilizing a robust set of synthesizer and industrial influence which continues throughout the duration until Brennan’s haunting vocals washed in reverb and echo come into the fray. The back end of the track makes use of really strange effects that eventually die down until silence is left over what could have been a foggy landscape or even the recesses of a basement show subdued within fog.

“Scheherazade” with its full sounding drums, blends well with the synthesizer for a classic sounding darkwave song. “Eyelash Moon” carries more of a synthwave style feel, that’s more earnest sounding, and somewhat isolated. It’s nice but depressing all the same. “Birdcalls” utilizes the atmosphere the record has created until this point to deliver yet another really dark sounding track. “Daisy is Depressed” with its spacey keys, the distant sounding drum pad, and the echoey vocals come together in a grand finale. 

For a record and a label that have just kind of sprung up out of nowhere, this is a record that people should not pass by. With not much of a following at the moment, people should do all they can to share and support this project, and more importantly the label, so they can continue to put out weird and experimental sounding projects and records. On the labels official bandcamp are a few t-shirts that people should consider supporting. This is yet another nice darkwave record for 2020.

For Fans of: Lunacy, Child of Night, Joy Division

Tracklist:

  1. Sex Knives
  2. Nile Duty
  3. Association
  4. Perfect Hair Forever
  5. Scheherazade
  6. Eyelash Moon
  7. Birdcalls
  8. Daisy is Depressed

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