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22 November, 2016

Dumb Hole - Bravest of the Galaxy

Dumb Hole – Bravest of the Galaxy |SCHÄF Records, album, 2016| 5/5 alternative rock

1. Somebody, 2. I'm Ready, 3. Invincibles, 4. Now I See, 5. She's All My Love, 6. Dancing Without Sound, 7. Killing for Love, 8. Proud of You, 9. Deadline, 10. A Free Old Man

These days, human civilization is greatly divided not only due to skin color, location, financial status or music taste. It's now about a pure vibrational friction between the heart-driven truth seekers and the brain-based manipulators, considering that the human brain is more receptive to fears and illusions. When there's an attempt to tame the vibration of truth, people feel it and revolutions are ignited. This can be already observed world-wide: manifestations, and individual re-valuations of every aspect of one's life. It's not an exclusive 'mid-life crisis' anymore, but an Awakening that touches every age group.

With Bravest of the Galaxy we get a new album which addresses the topic of revolutions really well. Leonardo Guzman (vocals, guitars) and Magnus Almqvist (drums) – the Swedish/Argentinian duo working under the name Dumb Hole channeled the rebellion’s vibe into ten dynamic songs. Bravest of the Galaxy includes several songs that will instantly get you hooked thanks to their upbeat tempo and sound.
These musicians don't wish to make you wonder whether they're good with their instruments. 'Somebody', the album opener, already offers amazing drum play aligned with guitars and vocals. Since there's no bass in the band, the drum kit has been set up carefully to compensate that lack. Not only is the song immediately memorable but its production is professional and lets its dynamics bloom. The performers want you to open your eyes and stand up for your own truth, rebelling actively.

Are you ready for a change if the song put you in a proper mood? The band teases - 'I'm Ready', then fires up with another rocking tune. This song speaks of breaking free from capitalism and overcoming related societal fears. It's supported by a slightly anxious tempo, though the overall mood is light. Almqvist again delivers his drumming, on par with the likes of Marco Minnemann, for example. The composition is rather traditional for both rock and pop genres, and consists of well written arrangements. 'I'm Ready' includes also more aggressive moments, which definitely spice up the overall atmosphere.

Guzman's a fan of Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, and Queen among others. You can hear that in 'Invincibles', with the 1970s rock feel in the beginning, though a bit later the added guitar effect gives it a fresher, more modern vibe. In contrast to the previous songs however, the vocals and heavier, groovy guitars are accented much more than drums. The song has many instrumental moments which bring a nice balance to the composition. 'Invincibles' speaks of humans as an invading species – in the eyes of ETs, we're aliens after all. The band brings an awareness to the fact that if humans desire to colonize Mars and other planets, there's a serious threat to any local, original life forms (and ETs' sacred sites). They could be destroyed due to our disrespectful conquest, just as we had proved our arrogance towards indigenous inhabitants of many regions on our own planet.

In many families, there's often a power struggle between father and son. It becomes more evident when the son grows up and begins noticing unfair, outdated rules and regulations imposed not only on him, but the rest of the family too. 'Now I See' speaks of psychological abuse of power by masculine members of a family. The vibe is touching with its mood full of resentment and reproachfulness. The vocals are much higher here, while the drums and guitars are tightly packed at times.

'She's All My Love' is all about playing fast, loud, and intensively. The song has very high dynamics - also in terms of the subject, as it speaks of a man falling in love with a prostitute, and obviously not being happy in that relationship. The track illustrates many shifts and stormy moments, perfectly bringing up the picture of how rough and twisted this couple can be with each other. Therefore, listeners may literally imagine them arguing, throwing items on the floor, the man spying on the woman during her working hours, etc. Since the song doesn't end with a strong accent but the swirling guitar arrangement continues, listeners may suspect the couple decided to purge their karmic connection further.

'Dancing Without Sound' has the 90s rock feel with both dominating, raspy guitars and softer moments within the composition too. The song is a potential hit thanks to its encouraging atmosphere but also a smoothly flowing rhythm. Moreover, prominent vocals let the singer be remembered and recognized.

Tense bass and assaulting guitars along with dynamic drum beats begin the next song - 'Killing for Love'. The chorus eases the built up tension, is memorable, and makes the song a potential hit. The emotion brought by the song, and the must-see official video single is related to manipulative attempts of so called 'Cabal' to control and terrorize people, to weaken and force them into making desirable choices, since non-conformity is unacceptable. It always triggers dramatic events world-wide because there's usually a bigger agenda behind it all, organized by politicians, Catholic and Islamic religions, and also negative aliens, according to conspiracy theorists.

'Proud of You' speaks of the problem of giving up one's passions due to becoming a parent. Like the previous songs, it brings tension and changing moods. Many tempo switches can be found here along with tightly packed drum beats and vocals. It's a great track for movies thanks to its storytelling qualities. The following 'Deadline' brings more noise within arrangements depicting lives of drug addicts while they navigate between fixes. In spite of this dark topic, the song is melodious and instantly memorable. Progressive rock fans may find some interesting instrumental references to the sound of Rush here.

The last track, 'A Free Old Man' is a mix of a few sibling genres including rock, industrial, and alternative. It is melodic and memorable but by no means simplistic. It’s the longest on the album and consists of several wisely intersected parts. The track begins with a melancholic, 'farewell' tune, but a dense combo of arrangements and speed comes into play with time, making for a nice contrast between the varied sections.

Bravest of the Galaxy is an emotionally charged album set within an uplifting, dynamic atmosphere, usually aimed at listeners in their 20s and 30s. No composition on here will make listeners feel like saying 'damn, we're doomed!' despite the song topics. The tracks were composed to trigger listeners to stand up for what their hearts resonate the best with. The writing on the album is clearly Dumb Hole's forte; the compositions vary acoustically, avoiding ear fatigue, yet all arrangements are professionally distributed within tracks to make the listening experience enjoyable. On top of that, since every song tells a different story, the arrangements mirror the emotions contained within the song motives; if it’s about difficult love, there's confusion; personal problems cause sonic tension; an addiction is linked with a 'noisy' mind, and so on. This mastery should help the band draw interest from those interested in TV music licensing, ads, radio airplay, audiobooks and many other creative media. Do support the band's efforts and buy their album ASAP!

(Reviewer: Katarzyna 'NINa' Górnisiewicz, Fabryka Industrial Rock & Metal Enclyclopedia, November 21st, 2016. Proofreading: Mike 'Vesper' Dziewoński)

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Reviewed by Fabryka Industrial Rock & Metal Encyclopedia