Tuesday, 7 May 2013

The Great Artiste - At the Bridge of Dawn

EP review by kev@thesoundofconfusion.co.uk

There's something about the audio of a frantic military operation at the start of this EP that gets the heart beating sets the scene for the compelling shoegaze/fuzz-rock that follows. It's a great introduction. Kicking straight into 'The Nagasaki Equation' you realise that The Great Artiste aren't all sweetness and light, the French group are more about power, vitality and energy, and that track barges its way from the speakers like it's on a mission. 'From A Dead Star' in some ways resembles Spectrum's take on The Red Krayola track 'War Sucks' in the way it uses sound effects and distortion to create a sense of urgency, almost panic; it definitely gets the blood pumping, all eight minutes of it.

We know there's a revival of sorts going on with shoegaze (as much of a revival as there can be for a scene that was never mainstream and never really went away anyway), but this lot are bringing something different to the table; every song here sounds vital, as though it had to be made. That's the passion The Great Artiste have put into these songs. 'Blonde Greta' is all flailing drums and sheets of guitar, as though it's telling you that you have to listen. When we reach closer 'Song for A&E' it's almost as though the pressure has been let off. The weight that was on the band's shoulders has been lifted and we can relax just a bit, although it seems as much in recognition that all the effort can end up being in vain. Then part way through they change their minds, turn the switch to "happy" and sing that "it'll be alright". 'At the Bridge of Dawn' is much better than just alright.

The Great Artiste's website

Stream or download the EP

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