Top positive review
17 people found this helpful
on 7 May 2013
This is a fantastic debut album and it's great to hear from a band with such ferocious passion in an age where most artists seem rather indifferent to what they are doing. Silence Yourself even has the band's manifesto written on the covers and its message couldn't be anymore relevant in our age of constant distractions and babbling.
So they have the substance and thankfully, the talent to match it. Savages built their reputation on their ferocious live performances and it is only a minor quibble that the album doesn't live up to that. But again, bands that are stronger live than on album are another rarity and this album is excellently put together.
You can hear right away the influences behind the Savages music, but Jehnny Beth's wail is out of this world, completely original and surprisingly diverse; she has an excellent way of phrasing words that really separates her from the herd. For the most part she uses her voice like the music behind her, to confront the listener, to demand them to hear what she has to say, which brings me onto the lyrics, which are quite excellent and biting.
For the most part, the album does have a unified sound, which is deliberately confrontational and sparse, with no fancy showmanship to detract from the band's message. Most of the songs are lean, harsh, some, like Strife and Hit Me, even suggest an almost metal-head influence behind the band, which isn't that hard to believe. But even this album has its moodier pieces, the first coming right in the middle of the album with Waiting For A Sign and the Instrumental, Dead Nature. It is a very sudden change of pace and while Dead Nature is pretty meandering, it gives the listener a breath before they continue with the onslaught with She Will, rounding up the album with their best tracks, like Hit Me and the Patti-Smith esque, Husbands, particularly when Jehnny Beth repeats the title.
The album ends on another moodier piece, the Gothic Torch song Marshal Dear, whose outro includes a sudden outburst of Clarinet. It is a peculiar choice but it works and hints that the Savages can be a little experimental should they choose to be.
Overall this is a worthwhile album and strong contender for best debut of the year. The Savages show excellent promise and hopefully they will only improve.