Blag’ard – Black Faced Clocks (CD)

“Black Faced Clocks” starts out in a very deliberate way, but when Blag’ard gets into the meat and potatoes of “Monk”, one can hear that the band is still tremendously reverent of the early nineties. The band plays a brand of alternative rock music, but this is the style of alt rock that was big during the days of The Pixies rather than The Raconteurs. In fact, there is nothing present during this track that would date Blag’ard to any year newer than 1993. But is that a bad thing? I can understand that some bands like to meander around their musical sound scape, but a track like “Monk” is almost too disjointed; the band has almost made an ox bow lake by the tie that the track ended. While the first track on “Black Faced Clocks” ay only be three and a half minutes, the band’s reliance on the same arrangements to fuel the track makes listeners weary, as the song feels doubly long as a result.

The second track, “Losty” has more of an energy to it. The band is able to succeed where they were weak before, in the fact that they invert their style. Instead of meandering with their vocals as they did on “Monk”, the band allows the instruments a chance to meander. The result is something much more safe than the previous track, and the overall track sounds much more purposive than their first go on this album. The interesting modification of the guitar during “Peaches In Cream” will keep individuals in their seat, but the band does keep some constants on this album. For example, the tracks all could still be on some demo tape from 1993; the band does not desire to update their sound and go for big money.

One has to praise them for that, even if the allure of the band may be lost on the younger set of listeners. While “Peaches In Cream” is the serviceable single from the EP, I would like to hear where Blag’ard goes in the next few years. There are some nagging problems that keep the band from succeeding wholly, but by the end of “Jenny G”, the act is in much better straits than they were at the onset of the disc. The band is able to shine without having to rely on past successes of prior bands, and time will be the one who tells if the band is a success or not.

Top Track: Peaches In Cream

Rating: 6.0/10

[JMcQ]

Blag’ard – Black Faced Clocks / 2006 Pig Zen’s Pace / 5 Tracks / http://www.blagard.com / Reviewed 16 September 2006

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