Genre/Influences: Alternative rock, dark-rock, cinematographic.
Format: Digital, CD, Vinyl.
Background/Info: I can’t remember to have heard of this French formation before. Bärlin features Clément Barbier, Laurent Macaigne and Simon Thomy. They’ve released a few productions and this year unleashed their newest full length album featuring seven songs.
Content: This album has something really special. You can define the band’s music as dark-rock driven, but it clearly sounds intimate and characterized by clarinet play. It all sounds like the clarinet has replaced the guitar. It creates a particular atmosphere you’re not used to hearing on other rock-driven works. The songs are progressively built up. I also noticed a few passages making me think of pure film-noir music.
+ + + : The use of a clarinet is a challenge, but the least I can say is that it works! This instrument injects some magic into the work, but it also makes the originality of this album. The dark-rock approach of Bärlin became something personal and intimate. But there’s much more than simply the use of an instrument you don’t expect. Several tracks also reveal great song writing; the tracks being progressively built up. It sometimes needs several minutes before you hear the first vocals, but here again it appears to be efficient.
– – – : As I already mentioned this album also has something atypical, which remains a challenge to catch the attention of a wider audience. The album is maybe just missing a hit song!
Conclusion: This formation is clearly thinking out of the box and I can only, but encourage them to move on this way!
Best songs: “Black Heart”, “Glasshouses”, “Pagan Rituals”.