Album Review – The Silence Industry – The Hidden Album (2016)

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The Silence Industry is the delineation of the fusion of traditional goth rock and progressive rock (progressive goth rock), for Graham Jackson creates lengthy tracks filled what the distorted, grungy darkness that came to establish goth rock (sometimes known as dark alternative) as a distinct genre from its origins within post-punk.

Neonblack travels the listener back in time to the early sounds of Goth rock with this piece, routing to pay tribute to the pioneers of the genre; Joy Division, The Sister of Mercy, Bauhaus, and Siouxsie and the Banshees being key comparisons, as Neonblack manages to recreate the fragmented, eerie atmosphere, yet with rhythmic assertiveness. However, there are also very allusive musings towards the later developments from the 1980s, early ‘90s, (The Danse Society, Skeletal Family and Rosetta Stone) for the unforgettable ‘tinny’ production of the drums, guitars and percussion.

Marilia’s momentary introduction opens with white noise, mild leaning towards synthwave and ambiance, with the  drops of synthesizers growing in speed to build up to the gothic instrumentation; but unlike the previous track, turns into a forlorn rock ballad. The guitars and bass mimicking the cords of country/folk and alternative rock genres. This Zero Hour is an energetic track, instrumentally very similar to the works of Rosetta Stone (explicitly tracks Adrenaline and Shadow) combining fast paced guitars, darkwave fluxes and a peculiar echo effect on Jackson’s vocals.

On Feathered Wings once again introduces a mix of ambient, darkwave, and on this occasion cold wave  into the creation of this track, the bearing of the lyrical and instrumentation demonstrating sadness and regret, whilst withholding a gentleness, and cradling a distant hopefulness in the instrumental narrative.  With Arms takes a more enlivened path, and captures once more the traditional goth rock structure, however, not losing the forsaken ether of cold wave, and the mysteriousness of darkwave.

With Gilded Fetters is the longest track on the album, exceeding into over ten minutes long, thus my observation of the re-imagining and recaptured usage of progressive rock, which ironically the genre of punk rock originally set out to counteract, only for subgenres to reclaim it. I also strong doom influences in this track, for the consistent mournful rhythm , with moments of dark country guitar riffs near the end.

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