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The Shining Tongues – This Body Of Mine Will Disintegrate
The Shining Tongues, spearheaded by Daniel Knowler, return with their sophomore album "This Body Of Mine Will Disintegrate," a follow-up to their eclectic debut "Milk Of God." Formed in 2020, Knowler and bassist Sam McLaughlin bring forward their experience from previous projects like The Infinite Three and Cindytalk, weaving a tapestry that blends post-punk, gothic folk, drone-rock, and psychedelia. This new album stands as an evolution of their sound, offering a meditative exploration of impermanence through a complex mix of genres and influences.

Track-by-Track Review:


1. The Field: Opening the album, "The Field" immerses listeners in a rich soundscape of ambient drone and gothic folk. The track's slow build and expansive instrumentation create a feeling of solitude and introspection. The haunting vocals, layered with reverb, add a ghostly quality that sets the tone for the rest of the album.


2. Sleeping Breathing: This track introduces a rhythmic urgency reminiscent of the band's post-punk roots. The driving bass line and precise drumming propel the song forward, while atmospheric synths and guitar effects create a dense, textured backdrop. The juxtaposition of energetic rhythms with moody melodies encapsulates the band's unique style.


3. Visions From Pig: As the album's lead single, "Visions From Pig" captures the essence of The Shining Tongues' sound. The dark, brooding atmosphere is underscored by a hypnotic beat and swirling guitar riffs. The cryptic lyrics and psychedelic undertones evoke a sense of otherworldly visions, making it a standout track that lingers in the mind.


4. Muscle: "Muscle" is a more experimental piece that pushes the boundaries of conventional song structure. The dissonant chords and minimalist arrangement create a tense, almost disorienting experience. The repetitive rhythms and ethereal vocals contribute to a meditative state, inviting listeners to contemplate themes of physical strength and vulnerability.


5. Forgive: This track shifts the album's tone towards introspection and melancholy. The acoustic guitar and soft, haunting melodies convey a sense of sorrow and longing. The lyrical content delves into themes of forgiveness and reconciliation, making it one of the more emotionally impactful songs on the album. Notably, the use of piano in "Forgive" adds a delicate, introspective layer, enhancing the song's emotional depth.


6. Ladder Of PerfectionWith its gothic influences, "Ladder Of Perfection" builds a dark, immersive soundscape. The song explores spiritual striving and existential reflection, creating a narrative that is both compelling and thought-provoking.


7. Wonderful Pig: An intriguing title for a track that blends folk and ambient sounds, "Wonderful Pig" stands out for its serene yet unsettling atmosphere. The gentle and sensitive singing paired with subtle ambient noises creates a sense of calm that is tinged with unease. This track encapsulates the album's overarching theme of impermanence, inviting listeners to reflect on the transient nature of life.


8. A Sun Which Leaves No Shadow: The closing track is an expansive, almost cinematic piece that brings the album to a powerful conclusion. The combination of ambient drone and psychedelic rock elements creates a vast, immersive soundscape. The song's slow build and dramatic crescendos leave the listener in a contemplative state, pondering the themes explored throughout the album.


Instrumental Highlights:


The instrumental performances on "This Body Of Mine Will Disintegrate" are integral to its haunting and eclectic sound. Sam McLaughlin's idiosyncratic bass playing stands out, providing a distinctive groove and depth that anchors the album's sonic landscape. Willie Nash's punchy drumming injects energy and precision, driving the dynamic shifts and maintaining a compelling rhythm throughout. Robin Jax contributes nuanced guitars and backing vocals, adding texture and harmonic richness. The acoustic and electric guitars weave intricate patterns that complement the album's ambient and psychedelic elements. Additionally, the use of piano on "Forgive" introduces a poignant, introspective element, highlighting the song's emotional core. The album likely features other instruments common in progressive folk-rock, psychedelic rock, and art rock, such as keyboards and various percussion instruments, further enhancing its rich and layered sound.


Overall Impression:


"This Body Of Mine Will Disintegrate" is a profound journey through themes of impermanence, personal reflection, and spiritual exploration. The Shining Tongues successfully blend a wide range of influences to create a cohesive and immersive listening experience. Each track offers a unique sonic landscape, making the album a rich and rewarding listen for fans of gothic folk, post-punk, and psychedelic music.


Daniel Knowler and his bandmates have crafted an album that not only builds on their previous work but also pushes their sound into new, uncharted territories. The production quality is high, with careful attention to detail in the layering of sounds and textures. The result is a mesmerizing and thought-provoking collection of songs that linger long after the final note fades. This album is not just a collection of tracks, but a unified artistic statement that challenges listeners to engage deeply with its themes and emotions.