Review Summary: The Swedish heavy purveyors with a sound that is not easy to categorize spanning a few things from screamo to post-rock.
"This is a call for an uproar, to shake off the bonds of abuse and oppression. For when a government has become so destructive that life is nearly impossible, the people must alter its way.” So goes the proclamation by The Blue Collar Army, a Swedish quintet for their debut album Norrland (they are actually located in the north of Sweden in a place called Skeleftea).
If you think these might be just big words, think again. These five guys that go under the names of The Englishman, The Old Man, The Party Bear, The Pig and Baron von Horst, are certainly not joking. Tracks like “This is the link between the past and the future” and “We will burn your cities to the ground” certainly live up to their titles - big, excruciatingly booming sound, with loud guitars and screamo vocals, as if they are really trying to bring everything down!
But then, that would be an all too a simple description. TBCA actually come up with a left-field combination of the dystopian post-rock visions of Godspeed! You Black Emperor, industrial/heavy metal stylings of Neurosis, more ambient rumblings of sunn o))) and some more melodic leanings found with their Norwegian neighbours Motorpsycho (in their heavier moods, mind you).
Guitarist The Englishman (who actually seems to be one) and the guys come up with an interesting and truly heavy musical concoction that at the same time does and does not sound like anything else. They are able to move from heavier post-rock (the opener “Welcome to NORRLAND”) to full-fledged heavy screamo (“BD”), to heavy ambient of “Hostis humani genris”. They are even able to throw in a more melodic respite of “Intermission”.
If you can discern the vocals, they do seem to go with a very dystopian vision quite suitable to the music they come up with, which, actually could very well serve a soundtrack to a quite scary horror movie. It would certainly strengthen the message.