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Yes, the black metal darlings of Pitchfork are back with their answer to Stereophonics' Language. Sex. Violence. Other?, and thank goodness. They follow up New Bermuda with their first LP for ANTI-, offering a more romantic, smitten sound than ever that we hope will chug at least somewhat. 

Vinyl Double LP £20.49 8714092758214

180g black vinyl 2LP on Anti, housed in a gatefold sleeve.

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CD £12.49 8714092758221

CD on Anti.

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Ordinary Corrupt Human Love by Deafheaven
1 review. Write a review for us »

9/10 Greg 14th January 2019

No two of Deafheaven’s four albums sound alike, but somehow their mood is immediately identifiable. Combining the tortured shrieks and blast beats of black metal with the immersive tones of shoegaze, you’ll be surprised to know just how beautiful, complex and accessible their fourth album ‘Ordinary Corrupt Human Love’ sounds, with sophisticated melodies, panoramic textures, and landscape dynamics being put to good use. After the soothing sounds of the ocean tide, the first instrument you hear on the opening track “You Without End” is a piano, followed by a sunny, reverbed slide guitar, followed by spoken-word vocals that reads a short story before frontman George Clarke’s Clarke's scathing rasps comes in over a “Layla”-esque piano melody. Normal business resumes on “Honeycomb”, which has the band’s signature triple-threat of frenzied blast-beats, triumphant black-gaze riffs and Clarke's demonic howls, then all of a sudden it slows down a bit into an upbeat rock & roll song, then downshifting again into a chiming indie-rock coda.

Tracks like “Canary Yellow” and “Glint” are like three different songs in one, both adopting a heaven-collapsing-into-hell approach, starting with a languid instrumental before exploding into an onslaught of visceral black metal for most of the song’s length before concluding into an ecstatic celestial conclusion, and somehow they make these transitions sound so seamless. They do find time to slow down the pace with “Near” and “Night People”, both songs that ventures into haunting ballad territory. “Near” finds George Clarke trading his devastating rasps for conventional melodic singing over a slow, post-rock surrounding, while “Night People” is a haunting, pulsing piano-led dream-pop ballad that features Chelsea Wolfe on guest vocals. With ‘Ordinary Corrupt Human Love’, Deafheaven have brilliantly chosen to go wherever they please without being restricted to one genre, with a sound that pretty much feels like California; full of sunny reverberance and warmth mixed with oceanic malaise and the gloom of ageing, adding bright washes of colour to the preferred monochromatic palettes of black metal. After all, pastel is the new black.



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