Album Review: Paint It Black - 'Invisible'

15 April 2013 | 2:21 am | Staff Writer
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Fast-paced, aggressive and melodic, an impressive return for the band.

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It has been a few years since forward-thinking hardcore/punk group Paint It Black delivered 'Amnesia' and 'Surrender', the band's 2009 EPs, and their last releases before new 6-track EP 'Invisible'. The title makes sense, it's understandable that in the band slowing down and keeping a little further off the grid, they may have slipped the consciousness of some fans. With 'Invisible', however, Paint It Black demonstrate why they're a band that deserve the complete opposite of invisibility.

'Invisible' kicks off with 'Greetings, Fellow Insomniacs'. A short, sharp burst of aggression, it's an apt reintroduction for those who've been out of touch for a while. The band are as vicious as ever, with new father Dan Yemin's voice jagged and harsh in a way that entirely compliments the instrumentation. The anger isn't gone from the lyrics either - “We are breeding, multiplying, in the space between the walls. / What you call living feels more like dying, if it feels like anything at all”.

'Greetings, Fellow Insomniac' leads into 'Headfirst', heading into far more melodic territory that would feel incredibly poppy were it not for the sheer coarseness of Yemin's howl. The way in which Paint It Black have been able to explore such a diverse range of sounds within the broad umbrella of “punk” and “hardcore” has been a consistent edge to the band, and it's a quality in full display on 'Invisible'. The confrontational 'Props for Ventriloquism' slots in seamlessly next to 'Little Fists', a downright adorable letter to Yemin's young daughter that displays a softer side to the typically vitriolic vocalist. Closers 'D.F.W.' and 'Invisible' come full circle – heavy, resounding and meaningful. The rhythm section of Andy Nelson on bass and Jared Shavelson are highlighted on 'Invisible', proving both proficient and with flair; the same goes for guitarist Josh Agran.

With 'Invisible', Paint It Black paint a portrait of a band that has maintained the ferocity and awareness of their earlier work while bringing something fresh to the table. The time away has served Yemin and co. well, with this EP firmly cementing the band as one of the most interesting and engaging modern hardcore bands active.

1. Greetings, Fellow Insomniacs
2. Headfirst
3. Props for Ventriloquism
4. Little Fists
5. D.F.W.
6. Invisible