The salvation of Pinkish Black | Slim's Downtown | Clubs & Concerts | Indy Week
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Pinkish Black

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Pinkish Black

The salvation of Pinkish Black 

When: Mon., Nov. 16 2015



SLIM'S, RALEIGH—October 30 must have been a bittersweet day for the Texas duo of Pinkish Black. On one hand, singer Daron Beck and drummer Jon Teague, who surround their basic instruments with rays and walls of synthesizer, issued Bottom of the Morning. The third and best LP of the pair's career, the release represented an arrival of sorts. On its first two albums, the tandem skipped between labels both big and small—the esteemed experimental indie Handmade Birds, followed by the recent Sony acquisition Century Media.

But Relapse, a metal bastion with time-honed tendencies for pushing the limits of the genre, drafted Pinkish Black for album No. 3, and you can hear the assurance of the deal in these confident, ambitious songs. The band's 2012 self-titled debut felt angry but apologetic, its throbbing keys and theatric vocals shrouded in a web of effects that receded just slightly for 2013's Razed to the Ground. But Bottom of the Morning is unabashed from start to finish. Opener "Brown Rainbow" is a march to victory, with sinister keyboard lines casting an ominous glow over Teague's doubling and tripling rhythm. Beck croons his way into the song, his voice setting a hook as strong as any in the band's discography. He practically speak-sings his way through "Everything Must Go," an out-of-business advertisement that scans as existential resignation. During the "Master Is Away," Beck and Teague close their eyes and drift through an instrumental wonder that inverts the colors of M83's romantic radiance. Bottom of the Morning is the sound of a band that intuitively understood how its mix of post-punk, horror scores and doom metal should sound from the start, now embracing the theoretical without hesitation.

That might have something to do with the other release Teague and Beck offered through Relapse on October 30. Five years after finishing it, the pair issued The Trouble With Being Born, the arching and aggressive second album from the pair's previous trio, The Great Tyrant. Not long after it was finished, bassist Tommy Atkins killed himself at home in Fort Worth; as a sort of morbid tribute, Beck and Teague took the "pinkish black" color of the blood-splattered bathroom walls as a new name, though they abstained from issuing the album until now. The songs suggest Pinkish Black without the near-stoic restraint they've since developed, making the release feel like an exorcism of sorts, a way to move forward by letting out the past. With King Buffalo and Beneath the Monolith. 9 p.m., $7, 227 S. Wilmington St., Raleigh, 919-833-6557, —Grayson Haver Currin

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