LP Review; Microwave: “Death is a Warm Blanket”

The Album:

After a beloved release in 2016, fans were ecstatic and full of anticipation for new tunes from Microwave, so let’s dive in and see if the major wait time was worth it. From the jump, it is apparent that this album is going to be very different compared to anything that has been released in a good while. From the jump, the Microwave brand is heavy and in full-swing. What does this mean? Well, the band shifts between different color tones throughout their selections, which is achieved through different textures, instrumentally speaking, and a variety of musical genres that layer in unique ways- in ways that aren’t always “logical” or musically comfy, but that’s what makes them so ornate and cool. They are able to drive with such a sound, for they establish and ride a groove that is fairly consistent throughout the record with slight alterations per song. This keeps the audience grounded as the band gives them musical flares here and there that help to make this record something that no one has heard before. Overall, I would give this record a 4.5 out of 5 stars. I am giving this album such a score because of its primary innovative and artistic nature. Additionally, this record gives off the aura in which one could listen to it in any situation; during any moment of the day, and it takes some skill to produce an album that is that adaptable to any situation or time of day. Nicely done!

 

Top Tracks:

“Part of It”, “Float to the Top”, and “Love’s Will Tear Us Apart”

When making your way through the record, it is evident that each track is necessary to the destination that this album takes you to; however, these works stick out and hit you slightly harder than the rest. This is because in these selections, the band toys with different musical techniques and sound timbres that help to alter the normal sound, or the sound that the audience anticipates, which bounces off the well-established grooves of each work. This creates an over-the-top sensation that will be perceived well by the masses. I recommend the record as it stands, but if you need a place to start- I would start here.

 

The Artwork:

 At first glance, I think the viewer would be oddly intrigued by the artwork, or they would just be confused by it. Regardless, it would strike a nerve in them, and that would make them want to see what the music is about on the inside. The artwork itself depicts a scene where one is looking into an abandoned, rundown, living room, and in there, everything appears to be burning but a TV is the one primal thing engulfed in flames. The picture, as a whole, drives on a color scheme that focuses on warm tones- browns, blacks, tans, etc. with dashes of oranges and light yellows for color contrast. This connects well to the music on the inside, for the record thrives off versatility while talking about harsher subjects. The instrumentals of this album fluctuate heavily as well, which provides variety, but they drive with a similar, dark undertone, and that fits perfectly with the warm-tone color scheme. Lastly, the image hits home with its juxtaposition of color, and the title of this album is one in the same in that juxtaposition realm, for “death is a warm blanket” encompasses two topics that are very opposite to one another. Overall, I would say this cover art is on brand for Microwave, and it’ll help push the success of the record as well.

*”Death is a Warm Blanket” was released on September 13th, 2019 through Pure Noise Records.

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