‘Bronze’ is very much a marker in the very long road of Crippled Black Phoenix; Joe Valk and Karl Demata are long gone, as are the comparisons to Pink Floyd. Justin Greaves’ riffs have headed down a path of stoner groove. The sound of ‘Bronze’ is massive – not just in terms of heaviness, but in how much there is to get your head around. Ten tracks span more than an hour, all with distinctly different sounds, meaning the first few listens can come across as messy and overwhelming. There are none of the signature melodies, it’s almost as if the entire band has fallen into a deep depression and taken their sound with it.
After investing some serious time into this record, you’ll start to see the glimmers of what make CBP so great; the ’70s Santana vibes of songs such as ‘Turn To Stone’ are infectious and lift the entire mood of this album. The enchanting vocals of Belinda Kordic on ‘Scared And Alone’ will creep under your skin and stay there with their haunting beauty. True, not every song is a hit, and they could have done with trimming a little fat to make this release a little more captivating. However, when they get it right, they get it so right, and it’s those moments that make ‘Bronze’ worth sticking with.
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