Review Summary: Because I want you to.
Along the years, a lot of people learned that there was more to Wes Borland than his monolithic riffs with occasional spacey detours present on Limp Bizkit albums. Black Light Burns is the product of his imagination let loose and after a 4 year gap since Cover Your Heart And Anvil Pants Odyssey
, Borland came back with an entirely new lineup and an expansive new record that is The Moment You Realize You're Going To Fall
Much like Queens Of The Stone Age's Songs For The Deaf
or Nine Inch Nails' Fragile
, The Moment You Realize You're Going To Fall
is an insular record that if understood, can be better enjoyed on its own. There are some catchy songs that are clear highlights and easier to get into, such as the drivingly mechanical "I Want You To" or the sparse and quiet "The Colour Escapes", but the majority of the record is a grower that flourishes when listened to as a whole. Even the preview tracks, "Splayed", "Scream Hallelujah" or "How To Look Naked", that have been released to the public sound a bit odd outside the frame, but they really find their place here.
Musically, Borland gathered his influences and molded them here to create a 65 minute odyssey. While some of the tracks are influenced by punk, such as the manic "We Light Up" and the fuzzy "How To Look Naked", odd metric Zappa-like rhythms and detours found on "Torch From The Sky" (that breaks from a scorching riff to a mellow, spacey guitar solo over an almost lounge background), "Because Of You" and "Burn The World" (this one being more similar to Tool's dynamics) or more exotic influences, like the bouzuki accompanied "The Colour Escapes", everything here is tied up by an overall industrial tinged feel akin to the aforementioned Nine Inch Nails or Marilyn Manson (most evident on the slow burner "Bakelite", that boasts a bass led rhythm reminiscent of 2003's Golden Age Of Grotesque
's "Para-Noir"). Whether the ambient touches or hard hitting riffs of these two bands, none of the tracks on The Moment...
feel out of place and that's a positive aspect, because at its length, the record might get a bit exhaustive.
The production is dense and features a lot of keyboard trickery that accompanies the overall guitar led melodies, creating a brooding atmosphere, especially on the title track that slowly grows from eerie synths to rather dissonant guitar solos and epic choir chants. Also, for those who are interested, the band has released a really cool trailer featuring an edited version of "The Moment You Realize You're Going To Fall" that is worth checking out.
Borland's schizophrenic vocals also add a lot to the nature of the record and will easily divide opinions among fans and newcomers as well. Ranging from a whisper to a Manson-like high pitched outing, he intentionally sings out of key at times, adding some theatrics and eccentricity to the tracks, often working really well. Some examples are the sprawled and noisy "Splayed" or the aggressive "Scream Hallelujah", that would easily fit on Nine Inch Nails' 2005 effort, With Teeth
. However, this isn't necessarily a bad thing, because Wes easily manages to create something of his own, so the songs aren't carbon copies of others.
Overall, this is a really interesting and fun record to listen to, but at the same time it can easily be dismissed by those who don't have the patience to give it a few spins (or Limp Bizkit haters that won't even bother checking it out). Wes should focus full time on Black Light Burns and release more records under this moniker, because this band offers a lot more thrills than his main one does.