Sub-Genres: Black Metal, Shoegaze
Label: Nuclear Blast
Non-Airable Tracks: N/A
Blackgaze pioneers Alcest from France are returning with a new album scheduled for release on October 25th. The first single released in promotion of the album was “Protection”, a song that continued the sound Alcest explored on their last album, laying somewhere between the firm black metal/blackgaze of their first two albums and the dream pop/anti-metal of their second two. This new single, “Sapphire”, confirms the new album will be taking from the direction of that last album. The single is good for its atmosphere and for its progressive-rock like structure though much of the dreaminess comes from the production and not from the playing itself like Alcest used to do. The last aspect removes one of my favorite parts of their music, how they were album to capture the essence of dream pop and shoegaze with clarity by using black metal tremolo picking. For this single, there is more reliance on reverb which removes the clarity for a more artificial setting. Still, the song plays great and leaves me anxious to hear their new album.
Sounds Like: Alcest, Deafheaven
Recommended Tracks: Sapphire
Reviewer’s Name: Bryan
Date of Review: 10/9/19