[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS
(41:14, Progressive Promotion Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Isolation 7:50 2. Memorial 6:10 3. Ashes to Ashes 5:49 4. Under a Black Sky 2:00 5. Absolom 5:58 6. Cosmic Dust 9:56 7. Left Behind 3:31 LINEUP: Jeremie Grima - vocals, guitars, keyboards Sebastien Bourdeix - guitars Frederic Motte - bass Tommy Rizzitelli - drums
Prolusion. French band THE BLACK NOODLE PROJECT has a history that goes back to 2001, initially a solo project of band leader Grima but over time developing into a band venture, albeit one with more of a floating line-up. "Divided We Fall" is the band's seventh studio production, and was released through German label Progressive Promotion Records at the tail end of 2017.
Analysis. The Black Noodle Project is a band that for many appears to be a unit that needs to be mentioned within a Pink Floyd context. And at least in the case of this latest album of theirs, I find that this is indeed warranted this time around. Not in a negative manner though, and it should also be noted that the greater parts of this album are instrumental at that. What we do get, apart from a token acoustic guitar based interlude that serves as a careful breather track, are two types of songs. Or perhaps three types, depending on how you listen to music. At first you have the material where The Black Noodle Project stamps their own identity a tad harder than elsewhere. Material with a foundation, or connection perhaps, to Gilmour era Pink Floyd, but where the intensity is kicked up a notch or two. The guitars are hard, even gnarly on a couple of occasion, the riffs are firm and dominant, and the intensity is strong. High impact material in many ways, pretty much like Pink Floyd on steroids. Then we have the songs that hone in closer to the popular Floydian sound. Atmospheric laden guitar solo overlays, backed by acoustic and electric guitars, while organ, keyboards and the occasional Mellotron details fills in the gaps and the contrasts to create a soft, layered and majestic landscape. Dark, warm and alluring. The optional third set of material are the ones that feature vocals. Optional third because the only detail that sets them apart is that element, otherwise they can be counted in as residing firmly within the second category of material outlined. The main and moist distinct identity mark of this band, as I experience them at least, is that they opt out of the blues-laden guitar solo runs Pink Floyd are famous for, and choose to go with textured ones instead, adding a post-rock touch to the compositions. Most often by way of hovering, atmospheric laden textures, but when needed also seguing out towards the more intense, nervous motifs that is commonly found in the post-rock scene. An approach that does give the material of this band a unique identity, even if it is only a relatively small detail that is markedly different. A modern day update on the most popular Floydian landscapes if you like.
Conclusion. "Divided We Fall" documents that The Black Noodle Project are still very good at doing their thing, and while perhaps coming a cross as a bit more Floydian on this album than on their previous couple of studio albums they maintain a strong by how they opt to use guitar solos and effects with more of a textured mode of delivery. An album for existing fans of the band, who will not be disappointed, and one that fans of late 70's Pink Floyd should take note of and check out at some point.
Progmessor: May 27th, 2018
[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]