Sunday, February 12, 2006

Steve Gilmore Reviews: Black Zarak - Delightmare

Artist: Black Zarak
Title: Delightmare

According to the boys in the band (Thomas J and Patrick of Melton Mowbray fame) Delightmare is their hit single. Alrighty then.... Taken from the album Daddy Long Legs, it features Thomas on computers and Patrick on guitar. Just in case none of this is making any sense to you let me point out that both of these artists have doings outside of Black Zarak; Thomas J with SFI and The Men From San Deigo and Patrick Mowbray.

Oh, and experimental is a good word to throw into the argument right now too...

The first thing that may register on your mind when you fire this up is that it's almost seven and a half minutes long. I have to say whenever I see tracks of this length my heart sinks. There aren't that many indie artists who can sustain your interest over that span of time - whether you like the genre or not. Unfortunately, Delightmare cannot do it either because a) it's too lightweight and b) because its not a very interesting instrumental. Moreover, it has some serious (and I mean SERIOUS) volume issues where the organ lead lines completely overpower the track, your ears and - as a byproduct - blow your damn speakers. Surely to God, I ask myself, Thomas of all people should have grasped this essential fact by now.

Judging by this sample, apparently not.

If I have to be truly honest in my description of this track I would be compelled to write that it is pretty much an instrumental jam between that organ lead and some guitar noodling. All in all, although it may interest the players I doubt very much whether it is going to impress many listeners at all. However, all nit picking aside the main problem with this track is the increasingly irritating (and completely unacceptable IMHO) volume levels which merely serve to make the listener so mad, they will probably turn the track off rather than subject themselves - or their speakers - to any more abuse. I had much the same problem with the last track I reviewed from this band, this playing around with volume controls business as well as the instrumental noodling. Jailhouse Cock (December 2005) was also an extended jam with some serious volume issues and I was forced to state - quite baldly - that I didn't like the track. The same goes for this track. Either I don't understand it, or I do and that's the reason I can't even get anywhere near close to it. Doing things like this track MAY sound clever to you (the artist) but to me (the listener) it's nothing but a pain in the butt. It isn't clever, it isn't funny, and it certainly isn't anything like I would consider experimental. It's just painful.

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