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Blank Realm — Go Easy (2012)

 Blank Realm — Go Easy (2012)

Blank Realm — Go Easy
If you are listening to it, your tape isn’t broken.
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Album release: October 16, 2012 (Vinyl)/April 16, 2013 (Fire, CD)
Record Label: Bedroom Suck Records (AUS)/Siltbreeze (US)/Fire (UK)
Duration:     38:54
Tracks:
1. Acting Strange      (5:19)
2. Cleaning Up My Mess      (7:11)
3. Working On Love      (4:14)
4. Growing Inside      (4:06)
5. The Crackle, Pt. 1      (2:50)
6. The Crackle, Pt. 2      (2:00)
7. Pendulum Swing      (8:41)
8. Go Easy      (4:33)
Members:
♣  Daniel
♣  Sarah
♣  Luke Spencer
CREDITS:
♣  Blank Realm  Primary Artist 
♣  Spencer Clark  Artwork 
♣  Lawrence English  Mastering 
♣  Jamie Potter  Artwork 
♣  Slice  Producer 
♣  Luke Walsh  Engineer 
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/566347849/music
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Blank-Realm/243765150618
Email us at: blankrealm@gmail.com
REVIEW
By Marc Masters; November 16, 2012  Score: 7.3
♣  The music of Australian quartet Blank Realm is pretty shambling, and that's a big part of their charm. They often stick raw jams and abstract sounds between crafted tunes, and even their sharpest stuff has a loose, wandering quality. Think of it as structured chaos-- or as member Daniel Spencer (one of three siblings in the group) explained in 2008, "It's something we have control over but also kind of don't." The results can be tedious, but more often they’re engaging, and sometimes even moving.
Along the way Blank Realm have also hit on some melodic gems. Last year they released an infectious, Clean-sounding single called "Falling Down the Stairs", tightening the screws without losing their personality. Go Easy furthers that intriguing development, resulting in their best, most coherent album yet. Blank Realm still sound impulsive and unruly, eager to noisily color outside lines. But everything here fits together snugly, and most tracks are grounded in classic rock and post-punk, evoking the way mid-90s-era Royal Trux (see Cats and Dogs) made rock sound primitive while still mining its history.
♣  It's clear from the start of Go Easy that this is a bigger, bolder Blank Realm. Opener "Acting Strange" sprints from the blocks with a chunky, hardcore-ish bass line, then adds engine-rev guitars suggesting Sonic Youth soundtracking a biker flick. A slower bass at the end drifts into follower "Cleaning Up My Mess", a bluesy waltz in which Sarah Spencer's snarl hits Jennifer Herrema levels. That pair of tunes sets the album's template: churning rockers bled into slower swings, both dipped in guitar fuzz and punk sneer. But that sneer is more world-weary than rebellious: Go Easy sounds like it's been around the block a few times. All the thick atmospheres and heavy sentiments have a gravity that's stronger than mere attitude.
♣  Yet despite that heft, Go Easy is pretty entertaining, too. Much of the album flies by in an excited rush, as the band smartly fills the stereo space with sparking, fired-up sound. Even when they dip into something farther out, as in the disembodied echo of "The Crackle, Pt. 2", they follow with their most enervating tune, "Pendulum Swing". As that track moves from simple pound into guitar pyrotechnics, it's clear Blank Realm are still chasing that sweet spot between controlling their sound and setting it free.
That goal becomes explicit on Go Easy's closing, slow-boogie title track. "I was smoking in the passenger's seat/ I was listening to the radio," the Spencers hum wistfully over big, dusty riffs. "They don't ever play the songs I like/ So I learn to just let it go." That simple scene could actually be a Blank Realm manifesto-- except on Go Easy, the songs they like and the ones they let go turn out to be the same thing.
Fortaken: http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/17403-go-easy/
In french:
♣  Un groupe australien de Brisbane qui propose un rock alternatif tendance post-punk. A découvrir.
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REVIEW
By Tom Hughes
♣  guardian.co.uk, Thursday 28 February 2013 22.59 GMT
Score: ****
♣  Over the course of five years and more than a dozen releases, Brisbane art-rockers Blank Realm have veered in and out of sonic focus, sometimes going all in for abstract, hiss-smothered synthscapes, sometimes weird, clattering outsider pop, and various places between and beyond. ♣  Go Easy is by far their most accessible yet, balancing the arty with the party beautifully to make for a set of danceable, hook-filled songs that bubble and bloom with an almost biological rampancy, shooting out tendrils of strange, snaking melody in every direction like vines enveloping a ruin. Acting Strange opens the album with a wriggly little riff twisting through a swirling cloud of noise, somewhat reminiscent of cult art-punks Chrome; Cleaning Up My Mess slows things down to a lilting, sunny lollop and adds some sweetly frazzled chants and an enormous, gorgeous spiral of a chorus; Working on Love is an irresistible wonky stomp that grabs and won't let go. It's one of a few great Australian albums getting a well-deserved wider release on Fire; Lower Plenty's devastating Hard Rubbish and Two Weeks by Scott and Charlene's Wedding are both highly recommended, too.
Fortaken: http://www.guardian.co.uk/
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Also:
By Adrian P.
:: http://www.adequacy.net/2013/04/blank-realm-go-easy/
By Alexander Bennetts on November 20, 2012
:: http://crawlspacemagazine.com/2012/11/20/blank-realm-go-easy-lp/
By Jennifer Kelly
:: http://www.dustedmagazine.com/reviews/7700
Review by Heather Phares  Score: ***½ 
♣  One of the most accessible releases in Blank Realm's prolific catalog -- and not just because Fire Records reissued it for wide release six months after it was initially issued on Bedroom Suck -- Go Easy feels like the culmination of all the noisy cassettes and CD-Rs the band made in the five years before it. Some of that noise has been stripped away -- it doesn't feel like a coincidence that there's a song called "Cleaning Up My Mess" -- and what remains has been focused and harnessed, but not to the point where things ever feel too predictable; the aptly named "Pendulum Swing" oscillates between tempered verses and guitar freakouts for nearly nine minutes. Relatively speaking, these may be some of the band's tightest songs, yet the joy of hanging out and jamming resonates throughout Go Easy and especially on songs such as the garagey "Working on Love." Indeed, there's an easygoing looseness to many of the album's best moments, particularly the aforementioned "Cleaning Up My Mess," a shuffling, seven-minute strut that has the DNA of the Velvet Underground and Pavement in its riffs. Like fellow Antipodean indie rockers Popstrangers, Blank Realm revel in putting their spin on classic sounds that are local and global, at times recalling Flying Nun's woolliest moments and at others incorporating farther-flung influences like Sonic Youth (whose dense riffs and deadpan vocals populate "Acting Strange" and "The Crackle, Pt. 1") and Television (whose bruised punk balladry informs the title track and "Growing Inside") into their music. At times, it's tempting to wonder if Blank Realm would sound even better if they focused more, but Go Easy is so likable that it would be a shame to sacrifice any of the band's charm in a quest for perfection.
:: http://www.allmusic.com/album/go-easy-mw0002418835
INTERVIEW
By M. Hugh Steeply · May 2010
♣  ” I think if there is hell, they’ll just hand me a printout of every stupid opinion I’ve ever expressed, that’s really the worst thing I can imagine.”
♣  “I love discovering weird records that I have no context for and trying to work out what motivated these people to make this music, and I kind of get a kick out of the idea that someone might listen to our record and think, ‘What the fuck are these Australian yokels doing?”
♣  “The pub had a sign up behind the bar that said, “If it has tits or tires, it’ll give you trouble.”“
Fortaken: http://www.tinymixtapes.com/features/blank-realm
Growing Inside: Blank Realm Interviewed
♣  by Angela Garrick on January 31, 2013
:: http://crawlspacemagazine.com/2013/01/31/growing-inside-blank-realm-interviewed/
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Blank Realm — Go Easy (2012)

 

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