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Featured The Blanche Hudson Weekend Release:
You Always Loved Violence
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"You said you liked guitars, went crazy for pop music, got your kicks from dancing.....and You Always Loved Violence"
At the end of last year, The Blanche Hudson Weekend released a compilation CD entitled Reverence, Severance And Spite. It featured all the single tracks up to that time, plus a bunch of brand new and exclusive recordings. That wasn't supposed to be their debut album, however... because this is their debut album.
You Always Loved Violence takes the fuzzed up, lo-fi pop of The Blanche Hudson Weekend and pushes it that little bit further. Never a band wishing to simply repeat themselves, this album will still be very much recognisable to anyone familiar with what The Blanche Hudson Weekend have come up with so far, but given the freedom to stretch out and experiment over a full long player, the band have certainly grabbed the opportunity to do so.
People expecting the usual heavily fuzzed up guitars shredding the eardrums may be surprised. They're still present (of course) but they're now poppier sounding. Caroline McChrystal's vocals have never been better. Instead of burying the tracks in layers of noise, the songs now shine out. Familiar live favourites like Union Square Blackout and The Last Ride have been re-recorded, brand new tracks such as The Bitterest Clash, Coming Home and No Contest are perfect examples of the kind of pop that The Blanche Hudson Weekend serve up so well. River's Edge and Getting Faster are raw, pounding slabs of sonic fury. But there's also a darkness hanging over some of the album. Screen Test brings to mind the intimacy and stark beauty of Chelsea Girl era Nico, Then You Tell Me is like one of the more melancholy tracks from the 13th Floor Elevators Easter Everywhere, and One Last Kiss is lyrically the most personal and open the band have ever been. It's all powerful stuff. The album closes on a disturbing and experimental note with Blue Exit Down, where metallic objects clatter against one another and the ghosts of one of The Blanche Hudson Weekend's previous recordings, So Sick, are well and truly resurrected.
Forget trying to label this band. OK, at their most basic they're "pop", but just like all the very best bands, they're constantly wanting to take things forward, try out different sounds, keep people guessing as to what is coming next. On You Always Loved Violence, consider all these things well and truly achieved.
Released: Monday 10th October 2011