Hey there and welcome to the void of “BWAAAH”. This week, Ryan and I insert ourselves into the oceans of obliteration by listening to Black Sheep Wall’s latest record, Songs for the Enamel Queen. The bulky bass and corrosive drone qualities discharging from this album compelled me to say BWAH a bit too much during this episode (it will make sense after the first twenty minutes of listening, I hope). Also, every damn time I read this band’s name I want to yell black snake moan! I also enjoy picturing a cute little black sheep meandering over a crumbled-down wall.
Songs for the Enamel Queen hemorrhages venom through its vocal abrasions. While some stanzas read like unfettered spite, there is a keen sense of sobering, and typically raw, self-reflection that pierces each utterance, anguished shriek, or gravelly rasp. And their bite is made most acute by the record’s enamel-stripping instrumentation (you’ll be looking like our pal Gollum in no time). Molasses-like grooves will give way to claustrophobia-inducing drone segments, virulent breakdowns, or poignant, post-hardcore tinged melodies. Although you should be able to make out most of the lyrics while listening, I found that reading them in tandem with sanity-grating arrangements emphasized the personal struggles being portrayed. Between the bass and drums, we are annihilated; let the bwaaaah rain down and liquidize me. The album’s frequent brawny moments coupled with the vocalist’s emotional strife propels Songs for the Enamel Queen into an unfathomably dense echelon of auditory decimation.
Black Sheep Wall formed in California sometime in 2006. Over the years, the group has carved out their own corner of sludgy experimentation. Songs for the Enamel Queen is their fourth LP and it dropped on February 26, 2021 via Silent Pendulum Records.