It’s no secret that I love metal. Hell, I cover it all the time here on BD, so the hint should have been picked up by now. But sometimes, I need to ease back and appreciate other styles and genres. In that love of exploring other styles and genres, I found Blackfield. Their first two albums are, in my mind, masterpieces of melancholic pop rock and I’m always excited to hear news about them. So when ‘Welcome To My DNA‘ was announced after four years, I was rather ecstatic. So, were my expectations met or did they fall flat? Check after the jump!
The first thing I noticed about ‘Welcome To My DNA’ after a few spins was that the album, while still having a melancholic feel, was quite angry. ‘Go To Hell’ is an example of this dichotomy where the music is eerily and sadly beautiful but the lyrics are rebellious and spiteful. ‘Dissolving With The Night’ follows the same pattern: haunting music with some surprisingly harsh lyrics. ‘Blood’ sounds like Steven Wilson still had the Orphaned Land experience under his belt. It’s easily the heaviest track on the album and is infused with Middle Eastern instruments and scales.
The production of the album is exactly what you’d expect to hear from a Blackfield album. It sounds crisp, clean and the various layers have that unmistakable Steven Wilson sound. What I loved about the production was that there were a few small character flaws here and there that gave the music a sense of “realness”.
A personal favorite track is ‘Oxygen’, which can definitely be attributed the ‘poppiest’ sounding song. It has a toe-tapping beat that evoked a sense of yearning. I had to play the song several times before I let the album continue.
The Final Word: It took me several spins to begin to fully appreciate ‘Welcome To My DNA’ but it was a journey well worth taking. Wilson and Geffen have crafted another beautiful album that will be appreciated by fans of the previous two albums.
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