Plebeian Grandstand

False Highs, True Lows

Written by: MIN on 14/09/2016 16:04:20

These last few years, French label Throatruiner Records have laid house to some pretty impressive bands. Personally, both Birds in Row and Rodeo Idiot Engine stand out, but also the French hardcore/black metal band Plebeian Grandstand has caught my eye after a friend introduced me to their previous album “Lowgazers”. Their newest album “False Highs, True Lows” is a maniacal trip into the darkest abyss where blast beats and howling shrieks are highly dominant, and honestly it’s hard not to be impressed by the pure evil that’s being spawned.

After thirty seconds of what sounds like a drowned-out air raid, the album’s second song, “Low Empire”, kicks off with whiplashing drums and dissonant guitars that give the image of heavy rain falling. Vocalist Adrien Brouè sounds like a tormented soul that’s trapped in hell, screaming for release. Similar bands like Hexis and Omega Deathspell come to mind in this maelstrom of hatred. The songs change tempo so fast and so often that you barely notice that by now you’re already listening to the album’s fourth song, “Volition”, which finally offers some kind of break. The guitars in the intro screech while retaining the image of hopelessness and utter misery, and suddenly, after three minutes, the drums kick back in and throw you back into the relentless turmoil that “False Highs, True Lows” have to offer.

Most fans of chaotic hardcore and black metal will probably find something to their liking within Plebeian Grandstand’s latest album, but unfortunately it’s sometimes hard to tell the songs apart. While listening to the record, sure, nuances and changes are highly evident, but once I stop listening to it, it’s hard to remember any of the elements that made me like it so much in the first place. Almost every track gets your heart pounding faster than a panic attack (except for the overly long “Tame the Shapes” which features seven minutes of noise) and they will have you thinking “holy shit” several times due to the incredibly fast tempo changes and sinister content, but unfortunately the album’s overall sound ends up as a tad homogenous.

“False Highs, True Lows” is an impressive display of chaotic power and is a thrill to listen to, but it fails to get a higher grade because of the short time it stays with me despite many repeated sittings by now. Surely, the band members are excellent musicians, and I can’t think of many bands able to follow this kind of songwriting. But ultimately, the album’s frightful hold on the listener is unfortunately too short-lived, like a nightmare that’s easily forgotten the morning after.

7

Download: Low Empire, Volition, Eros Culture
For The Fans Of: Hexis, Omega Deathspell, Rodeo Idiot Engine
Listen: facebook.com/plebeiangrandstand

Release date 29.04.2016
Throatruiner Records


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