The driving force behind Swedish quartet Blessings has always been the shared attitude and chemistry between the band members, all coming from a DIY punk/hardcore background, and having paid their dues in hard- touring bands like Anchor, Gust, Disavow, Obstruktion, Amalthea, and Swedish indie-legends Chester Copperpot.
Biskopskniven, out May 21 via Pelagic Records, recorded by the band themselves and mixed and mastered by Magnus Lindberg (Cult of Luna) is an extraordinary album full of intriguing layers to be discovered and uncloaked.
New Noise are proud to premiere “The Hound” below:
There are elements of hardcore, punk, crust, noise rock, heavy post-rock and indie rock in Blessings’ sound… there are moments that remind of At the Drive-In and moments that remind of Converge, sometimes even in the same track, and the Gothenburg four-piece merges these very disparate ends of the spectrum of heavy guitar music into a cohesive and idiosyncratic sound.
Their debut album Bittervatten was a harsh and noisy affair, inspired by bands like Unsane, Breach, Black Flag and Darkthrone but the band soon developed into a bit of a different direction. Still loud and confrontational, the elements of repetition and trance- incurring moods and riffing became more prominent in their sound on sophomore release Biskopskniven.
On the album, percussionist and synth player Erik Skytt states:
“One particular thing that really shaped the sound of Biskopskniven was the drums. Most tracks were written with a very loop- and groove-based approach, a sort of drum manifesto made by drummer Mattias Rasmusson, which gave the songs a very different foundation to build upon, as compared to most of the debut album. No frills, just machine-like repetition and simplicity.”
Blessings incorporated modular synths to create different textures that blended in with the guitars seamlessly and started working with rhythmical loops and percussion instruments. The result is a multi-faceted sound that is as heavy as it is diversified and full of little surprises that never seem out of place but always plays a certain role in the bigger picture of the album. The varied vocals round off this picture: a new approach is taken for almost every song of the record.