Album review

Boxstep - The Faces All Look On

Boxstep record with Shellac's live soundman, Bill Shibbe. As such, he's helped furnish brooding gothic ballads with enormous mettle. Rolling grand pianos, menacing violins and shards of guitar make this sound like a cross between The Bad Seeds and Godspeed You! Black Emperor's gale force ebb and flow.

It's an imposing, imperious album, but Boxstep's cerebral approach means impassioned crescendos rarely teeter over into melodrama. Thankfully, any quiet-to-loud dynamics are shelved in favour of clarity and coherence.

Rating: 4 / 10


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Very taken with Africa Express' version of "In C", by Terry Riley, this week. I have a few takes on the piece (50 years old this month, incidentally), the latest being one by Portishead's Adrian Utley from a couple of years back, though I still probably default to what I think is the original...