Imperial Leather – Something Out of Nothing (CD)

Imperial Leather – Something Out of Nothing / 2006 Profane Existence / 13 Tracks / http://www.communichaos.com/il/ / http://www.profaneexistence.com / Reviewed 02 March 2006

The two-tiered vocal attack that opens up the disc during the title track showcases the chaotic approach of the band that inexorably links the vocals to the music of the band. What is most interesting about Imperial Leather is the fact that they can create the 82 type of punk sound and tie it together to the very Scandanavian brand of post-punk (think Refused) to create something vital and thriving. “Picking Scabs” showcases a brilliant brand of production in which the vocals hide out at times to really allow the brilliant drumming to be showcased, without really changing the tempo of the disc in any perceivable way.

“Unsound Opportunities” is a perfect patchwork quilt for the band, as what sounds to be a very clean type of punk rock is in reality a heavily-layered track in which the band really brings a dizzying array of material to the table. The vocal duties are really back and forth throughout the majority of tracks on “Something Out of Nothing”. A song like “Busting My Seams” really shows it and contextualizes it to an arrangement that brings forth guitar, bass and drums at different times during the track. While each of the songs on “Something Out of Nothing” seem to have the same general sound, there is enough in the way of differences made on each of the track to keep listeners’ attention from waning. Imperial Leather throw a lot of material at the listener during this disc; “Something Out of Nothing” tops the scales at 32 intense, punk-packed minutes.

The guitar starts really attacking individuals’ ears during songs like “Destined for the Warehouse”; this is not the result of someone just trying to connect the vocals to the drums but is really calibrated to create the maximum impact. The band really shines on tracks like “Destined for the Warehouse” not only because of the additional effort of the instruments on the track but through the inspired vocal arrangements, which add another dimension to the track. Coming back to a more simple, deterministic sound for “Try Everything Twice”, Imperial Leather continues the newer tradition of bringing the vocal harmony to the fore. The second half of “Something Out of Nothing” is really a step up from the first half. While this is not to say that the first half was necessarily lacking something, everything from “Destined for the Warehouse” on is destined to be the next wave of punk hits to be shouted out loud throughout the world.

Top Tracks: Destined for the Warehouse, Try Everything Twice

Rating: 7.5/10

[JMcQ]

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