Black Book Lodge - Steeple And Spire

Black Book Lodge - Steeple And Spire

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(CD, Mighty Music, 2018)

The thing about reviewing records is that sometimes bands come up with what most probably would have been overlooked when picking up new music at the record store. Sometimes it's a real challenge to dig as deep as needed to form an opinion. Sometimes what at a first glance seemed to be uninteresting, turns out to be a very good encounter. Danish BLACK BOOK LODGE would definitely fall into this category. Esthetically the band, as well as the musical description, fall outside my area of interest in general.

But what's actually on “Steeple And Spire”, the band's third outing, really hooked me in. The gnawing groove, the dark and mellow feel are easy to get lost in. The energy and drive in BLACK BOOK LODGE’s music inspire me. It is kind of hypnotic, and with this spinning, I easily get stuck in activities without realizing the time passing by. “Weightless Now PT I & II”, the album opener, varies from metallic fat Drone type of music to extremely light and minimalistic passages where a soft vocal line is backed up by a single note.“The Tower Bell” holds more of a standard song structure but still with a good groove like Post-Grunge and / or mid '90s Goth Metal. The musicality is fantastic and without the delicacy in arrangements and sense for dynamics this would have been a mish-mash of different passages. But the geniality and perfection in the playing makes it flow smoothly.

The album’s title track, “Steeple And Spire”, is another fine moment. This is a song that again shows fine details and you have to love that annoying whammy-bar beaten up melody. “In Halves” is probably the one landing the closest to what I normally listen to and probably the most commercial track of the “Steeple And Spire” record. It's not far off to mention SOUNDGARDEN or perhaps the more contemporary AUDIOSLAVE as references here. My favorite of the album is heavy “Teething” though; I love the melody, how everything builds up to the second half. This one too holds fantastic melodies and great fine details when it comes to performance. The abstract musical structure behind vocal line in that second part is phenomenal.

In this case, I'm really happy I was forced to listen to BLACK BOOK LODGE. It was a very pleasant encounter and perhaps took me one step closer to learn not to judge before giving bands a chance.





01. Weightless Now PT. I
02. Weightless Now PT. II
03. The Tower Bell
04. Steeple And Spire
05. Spoil The Child
06. In Halves
07. Walls
08. Teething
09. Sum Of Every I


Ronny Jønsson - Guitar, Vocals
Kristian Klærke - Guitar
Steven Ardilsø - Bass
Jakob Gundel - Drums