ALBUM REVIEW: Black Delta Movement – ‘Preservation’

8/10

Following their successful gig at Strongroom Bar, Shoreditch, London back in June, Black Delta Movement has finally confirmed details about their long-awaited debut album, Preservation. Matt Burr, one of the Kingston-Upon-Hull five-piece primary songwriters and co-founders asserted that ‘”Preservation’ is literally preserving a series of songs that we felt really proud of that either never got recorded or we felt had grown over the years”. After eight years since their inception, with numerous EPs and hundreds of live gigs; XS Noize looks to ascertain if the Black Delta Movement have bottled and sealed the best of what has given them acclaim to date.

Ironically, Preservation begins with the same song the Black Delta Movement opened with at Strongroom Bar: Rome. There are no surprises and there is nothing different with the studio version and that is perfectly fine. Rome rounds up and captures “all the elements of the Stone Roses, early Charlatans and Kula Shaker in an indie gaze utopia”. Rome leads straight into Hunting Ground, a song with Kasabian influences which also introduces listeners to the psychedelic personality of the band, as well as an accompanying riff more up-tempo than, but similar to the one Johnny Marr used in The Smith’s How Soon Is Now? The penultimate track at Shoreditch, King Mosquito follows. Noted to be the most unquiet of the Shoreditch live set which still delivers two and a half minutes of pure energy.

Let the Rain Come, noted for “having a heavy sound not dissimilar to Queens of the Stone Age’s Go with the Flow” also has the Black Delta Movements own unique psychedelic improvisations injected into it. The sound, albeit different to King Mosquito has one thing in common; it is also two and a half minutes of pure energy. Preservation also features two other tracks that rocked Shoreditch: Hot Coals and No End. Hot Coals has an instant Stone Roses addictive factor mixed, but not stirred with the more middle of the road elements of Black Rebel Motor Cycle Club and Temples. No End has an extremely quirky opening not too dissimilar to The Ramones Blitzkrieg Bop drumming with Black Sabbath’s Iron Man.

So how do the songs Deceit, Ivory Shakes and For You stand up; the songs not showcased live in June. Deceit opens with Arcade Fire Neighborhood #2 (Laïka) drums which join up with some awesome heavy garage rock & roll riffs (as well as indirect The Soundtrack of Our Lives influences) in a friendly, but an intense race like improvising rival jazz band members. The Black Delta Movement earn their right to call themselves a rock n roll outfit with this song. Ivory Shakes is different with early Oasis influences and For You, the most mellow, chilled meditative and psychedelic anthem on Preservation.

And finally the song no one familiar with the Black Delta Movement could, let alone dare forget: Butterfly. Just shy of eight minutes, this song, which played out Shoreditch, also plays out this LP. Lyrics, “I think it’s time I touch the sky, it makes me feel alive” are poignant. Whilst there are many deep-rooted and inescapable influences from key bands and sounds throughout Preservation, the Black Delta Movement has been able to use these to create their own unique powerful sound without falling into submissive plagiarising awe of others. Preservation is a testament of a band now ready to come out into the centrefold.

Michael Barron

Michael Barron

MICHAEL BARRON first began writing whilst studying at university; reviewing the latest releases and live gigs. He has since contributed to the Fortean Times as well as other publications.Michael’s musical tastes vary from Indie to psychedelic, folk and dubstep.
Michael Barron