A Place to Bury Strangers
Pinned


3.0
good

Review

by Dewinged USER (42 Reviews)
November 19th, 2018 | 66 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Dethroned but not forgotten.

A guitar flies through the stage and smashes against the amp while feedback fills the place like a monumental mass of negative energy. Ackermann is a happy man. He knows exactly what he's doing. He feeds on chaos. If something goes wrong on stage, he never misses the chance to turn the obstacle into a museum of horrors, and the band gladly plays along. Those were the days though: "A Place To Bury Strangers, a.k.a. The Loudest Band of New York". Following the demise and foreclosure of Death By Audio, the DIY batcave where the thinking head of APTBS lived, created and crafted his own effect pedals, things changed. It's present day and Ackermann has moved into a new place. In his new apartment, he sits on the bed and plays with a drum machine, not too loud though because you know, the last thing he needs right now is scaring the neighbors. It's in this unexpected and almost sad fashion that APTBS's fifth album, Pinned, is born.

The latest release of A Place To Bury Strangers is not that loud anymore, or at least not the loudest, but it surely clutches to some of the elements that made them the deafening force they once were. Before the recording of Pinned, Ackermann and co. were lucky enough to cross paths with the explosive drummer Lia Simone Braswell, formerly of Le Butcherettes. Not only she bangs the kit like a maniac, but she also works double duty as a compliment to Ackermann’s lifeless singing with her own vocals. Honestly, Braswell is a spark of life in the cadaverous shadow that APTBS had become years after they were recognized as the saving grace of noise rock, and it’s partly thanks to this newfound, weakly beating heart that the band led by Oliver Ackermann breathes again.

Since hogging the limelight with their atrociously produced self titled debut and their sophomore effort, Exploding Head, an album that remains as one of the genre’s beacons, A Place To Bury Strangers have known decay in full splendour. Worship and Transfixion were already signs of a band burnt too fast trying to cover uninspired songwriting and almost inexistent musicianship behind walls of noise and sluggish drum machines. The gang needed to re-evaluate.

Fast forward to 2018 and here we have the latest incarnation of APTBS. Far from the tempestuous mayhem of the glory days, Pinned struggles to become the new vessel for the band, but it somehow expects to do so with half the attitude. “Never Coming Back” opens the album unabashed, sticking to a couple of notes and a post-punk beat. The drunken melody loops: (“I get so high / when I get so low / and I get so low / when I get so high”). Ackermann’s forte never was writing lyrics but drooling them until they become an ecstatic mantra. The opening number erupts towards the end with a flare of distortion, showing off some of Ackermann’s sonic crafting and noise worship, one of APTBS’s unquestionable strengths. “Execution” rides a racing electric beat while battling a disturbing monster of ecstatic and god knows what. “There’s Only One of Us” and “Situation Changes” pacify the mood for a while, the latter flourishing with goth vibes and Ackermann’s and Braswell’s voices seemingly comforting each other. “Too Tough To Kill” is a simple but effective track, but it certainly reigns above the rest of the songs that conform Pinned.

The album’s second half plays extremes. “Frustrated Operator”, as its title so proverbially states, suffers the calvary of going through a momentary identity crisis, easily the hardest to traverse, although it’s quickly aided by the gracious serenity of “Was It Electric”. At this point, it is time to decide if it's worth pushing onwards to the end or throwing the towel, because the last four tracks that wrap up Pinned are just an extension of everything that was on store. Nothing more, nothing less. The band makes its way out by inertia, as if they knew that no matter what they add or subtract, nothing will change the dragging apathy that bleeds out from their most recent creation.

When remembering the old days, nostalgia can play mischievous tricks in your head, but when the ashes blow through the speakers and go straight into your ears it’s difficult to ignore it. A Place To Bury Strangers may have seen better days, but the present still retains some of that essence which proves that the band is far from finished. They may have been long dethroned but Pinned may as well be all they need to start rebuilding the kingdom.



Recent reviews by this author
Two People First BodyYou Tell Me You Tell Me
Festerday IihtallanJohn Garcia John Garcia and the Band of Gold
Thou InconsolableEx:Re Ex:Re
user ratings (29)
Chart.
3
good


Comments:Add a Comment 
Dewinged
November 19th 2018


13748 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Well, this is awkward. I wonder why they would use my avy as the cover for their latest album.



Bandcamp has 3 tracks available if you still haven't jammed this and want to give it a shot out of curiosity (it was released back in April).



Aaaand that is one off the list.

Digging: Two People - First Body

Relinquished
November 19th 2018


38837 Comments


didn't hal have that same av before too

Dewinged
November 19th 2018


13748 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Who? halifax? Naah, don't think so.



Sup Wolfe?

BigPleb
November 19th 2018


56478 Comments


That is one badass band name/album cover.

Divaman
November 19th 2018


3245 Comments


Just finished my Procol review, looked up, and saw my old friend Dewinged has been keeping himself busy this morning as well. Nice one. I've got a pretty busy list of upcoming things to review, but might jump over to your list later and put in a claim -- there is one I've kind of had my eye on, but I just gave it a first listen, so I'm not sure I'm ready to commit to it just yet.

Digging: John Whelan - Celtic Fire

CugnoBrasso
November 19th 2018


435 Comments


Exploding Head was pretty good but I've never been a huge fan. I saw these guys back in 2012 for their Worship tour, they were selling t-shirts, albums and marijuana, and I remember wondering if that was legal.

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
November 19th 2018


24306 Comments


Only a 3 for your av album??

DoofDoof
November 19th 2018


1707 Comments


eye eye?

Digging: Bobbie Gentry - The Delta Sweete

Minushuman24
November 19th 2018


1865 Comments


I wish this album was as good as it's album cover.

Zorg
November 19th 2018


175 Comments


Great live band.

SteakByrnes
November 19th 2018


14163 Comments


oh hey it's you :3

Good review boi have a fat pos

TundraL5Z
November 19th 2018


2190 Comments


So uh, you rate your own avatar a 3? lol

sixdegrees
November 19th 2018


4924 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

hes not reviewing the album cover

Dewinged
November 19th 2018


13748 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

What Six said.



Thanks for the pos's people.

SandwichBubble
November 19th 2018


8965 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Put this man on trial for crimes against hum-avi-ty

Digging: Cassiber - Man or Monkey

Dewinged
November 19th 2018


13748 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Hang the motherfucker!

SandwichBubble
November 19th 2018


8965 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Will be checking this after I try out Transfixiation, not sure if I ought to be scared or excited seeing the averages and now this review.

Dewinged
November 19th 2018


13748 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

For what is worth this is better than Transfixion imo. Even better than Worship I'd say. But you won't find the energy and songwriting of Exploding Head, that i guarantee thee.

SandwichBubble
November 19th 2018


8965 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

That's really a shame. I just finished listening to Worship today after skipping it on release and it wasn't bad. I'll try to remain optimistic if that's the case

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2018


18319 Comments

Album Rating: 2.4

just got this on Vinyl Me Please's Thanksgiving sale



hope this is good

Digging: Pet Shop Boys - Behaviour



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy