Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Planks - 'Perished Bodies' (Album Review)

By: Chris Bull

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 11/09/2015
Label: Golden Antenna



If there ever was such a thing as a perfect goodbye in music, Planks have surely just come the closest.  Musically, it's on a par with 'Funeral Mouth'. In time it may prove to be a better album overall, right now it serves as a painful reminder that Planks, as a band, rest in peace.


‘Perished Bodies’ CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. The Sacrifist, Pt. 1 (Through Dirge and Death) (06:18)
2. Nothing Will Ever Change (05:00)
3. Into Lifeless Embrace (03:44)
4. She Is Alone (04:39)
5. Bliss in All Sorrows Found (05:49)
6. Only Now (04:35)
7. Perished Bodies (06:09)
8. Sadness in Our Ignorance (04:14)
9. The Sacrifist, Pt. 2 (What Does Walking Away Leave Us) (09:20


Planks are

Benjamin Hintz | Drums
Ralph Schmidt | Guitars, vocals
Marcel | Bass

The Review:

If you've never heard of Planks before, stop reading. Go and listen to 2012's 'Funeral Mouth' then come back. Right, now you're familiar, let's carry on shall we? Planks is a band that sit right on the fence between sludge and melodic post hardcore, although both feet are dangling over the post hardcore side... They called it a day last year and 'Perished Bodies' their FINAL album is the perfect goodbye.

'The Sacrificist Part I (Through Dirge and Death ' starts things off heavy and following it up with 'Nothing Will Ever Change', a song definitely leaning more on the post hardcore side, is a stroke of genius. Guitarist/Vocalist Ralph Schmidt is in fine fettle with the growls and the more melodic stuff. 'Into Lifeless Embrace' gets heads swinging with its waltz like rhythm and catchy riffs before the most melodic song on the album 'She is Alone' rings in. The intro is fucking huge and expansive and continues when the bass and drums enter. The addition of some haunting and screaming female vocals from Leoni of the band Svffer definitely give this an ethereal edge. Next track 'Bliss In All Sorrows Found' could be a follow up track from 'Funeral Mouth'. 'Only Now' is the most post hardcore sounding song and also the fastest. Drummer Benny excels in the fast fills and off beat tempos and carries each track on their own individual path whislt remaining in the same forest. The title track builds slowly with more off kilter drumming and a single note repeated before everything drops in and sounds massive. Ralph knows how to pick the right notes to convey emotion and when to explore different sounds. Although this is an instrumental track, more ideas are thrown around than most of the others, it's evident they poured their hearts and souls into this and tragically, they'll be laying it to rest. 'Sadness In Our Ignorance' is just that.

Planks, have you no idea how much we love your strange compositions? 'The Sacrificist Part II (What Does Walking Away Leave Us?) Is an epic and drawn out goodbye. The notes fall like tears from the eyes of a couple in the midst of an emotional break up. You both know it's for the best but damn it, it hurts so much. As the sombre drums set the tone, the synths, like the arms of your lost love, wrap themselves around you. The lonely riff at the 5.20 mark signals the moment when you have to leave...but can't...it's too painful. You're going your own way, she is going to be on the other side of the world, there's no hope for you. Cling to those final moments. The final guitar notes and the synth lingers like the smell of her perfume on your t-shirt and then she's gone. Forever.

If there ever was such a thing as a perfect goodbye in music, Planks have surely just come the closest. The band had been a labour of love for the 3 individuals, in it for so long, it has taken its toll. Musically, it's on a par with 'Funeral Mouth'. In time it may prove to be a better album overall, right now it serves as a painful reminder that Planks, as a band, rest in peace.

‘Perished Bodies’ is available here

Band info: facebook | bandcamp

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