A Quieter Life Darkwave, Post Punk Hallows It seemed like the end of August was so far away when Hallows announced their new album would be released. Finally, in the waning moments of the summer, A Quieter Life LP/CD/Cassette finally breaches the chambers of release date purgatory and flexes itself in its glorious totality. As I slipped the shiny black slab of wax out of the jacket and placed it on my direct drive turntable, Hallows' sound pierced the otherwise silent house on a peaceful Labor Day eve morning. As the sound ripped through my 1970's Bose 901s, it was then that I realized, Hallows truly found their calling as they entered this next phase of what seems to be an ever evolving endeavor. Over the last few months, Hallows released two singles that served as a window into the heart of A Quieter Life. "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed" reacquainted me as well as many others to the same artists that brought us the wonderful All That Is True LP and the Subtle cassette. A Quieter Life was the next step in the progression for Hallows as they drifted further away from the dominant sounds of their previous releases to find refuge into darker realms that explore the complexity of human interactions via relationships and the inevitable existential dread that follows us in the little worlds we inhabit. As we immersed ourselves in the singles, "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed", Hallows raised the bar on their signature rhythms laced with a healthy dose of the melancholy to compliment the themes of self destruction, loneliness and self acceptance. "Talk To Me" is characterized by its tempo changes and fluttering synth work that is enhanced by Vanee's luring and enchanting vocals that gently pull the listener into the subject with a haunting ambience and plenty of command that would make the supernatural envious. "I Am Destroyed" is layed out in a similar fashion as to what we heard on "Talk To Me" in regards to the crafty synthwork and execution. This track features Dom's deep monotone vocal approach which touches the same darkness we heard on "Talk To Me" but took an alternative route to arrive at the same vibe. "Talk To Me" builds slowly like a rolling fog gently swallowing the glen while "I Am Destroyed" is more of a swifter blast with a higher bpm count. Upon digesting these two chapters of A Quieter Life, it became quite evident, Hallows was on to something greater than the sum of it parts. There were stories left to tell and now we can feel the full force of Hallows and the dark delights they crafted.As we explore deeper into A Quieter Life and search for reasons why everything seems to fit together. The first reason is that I find no preference one way or the other when it comes to the vocals. Both Dom and Vanee compliment each other very well with their vocal styles. They show versatility in their deliveries and demand the listener's attention. For instance, Dom takes the lead on "Awake" with that monotone yet somewhat melodic approach that has become a signature on this album while Vanee takes the lead on "In Solitude" and "Things That Hurt". In the background on "Awake" Vanee adds that ethereal force to solidify its personality. Again, shared responsibility of vocal duties is a big part of what makes this release work. "Bitter End" and "Insanity" are perfect examples of how the album flows regardless of the primary lead. It reinforces the collaborative nature of the end product as A Quieter Life moves from track to track effortlessly. The seamless transitions cloud the mind and force you to submit to the tracks from a holistic point of view rather than isolating the parts into which artist is on vocals or who did the programming. The final piece to A Quieter Life is called "No Restraint". It follows the gloomy open to interpretation themes found in the lyrical scripts and employs the dual vocal approach, however it moves in a different manner than the other seven. The music moves in a purposeful maladroit manner that yields a vastly different musical feel which would lead one such as the reviewer to see the musical approach is solidifying the message in the lyrics. Musically they create a foundation that takes elements from dark wave, synthpop, post punk and even a little EBM and sculpts all of it into eight epic totems of sonic depressive statements that reflect the beauty and tragedy that lives in the darkness metaphorically and perhaps literally as well. Hallows makes it quite simple to explore their lyrics as they are built into the Bandcamp page and also come on a nicely designed lyric sheet included in the vinyl packaging. Our lives are constructed by many experiences, some of which are cause and effect based on the patterns to which we subject ourselves to and other times strange synchronicities move in mysterious ways. Life is open to interpretation and so are the stories told here and everywhere. I get an overwhelming sense of loneliness and isolation not just in the words but also in the architecture of the end result. Self-destruction and self-awareness are revealed in the visual realm with "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed".  Click here and here to visually experience the messages of Hallows and read our previous reviews of "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed". Over the months, Hallows sent over press kits for us to use for the review. As I explored the press kit, I took notice of how careful the artists were to include absolutely everything one such as myself would need. They anticipated many of the possible questions and even made sure images had the pixel dimensions required on our website. All of this precision and organization was a harbinger to the bigger picture with A Quieter Life. If Hallows took the time to create a press kit with a great sense of awareness it's natural to think they would do that with the music, packaging, their choice of technical assistance, art and everything that is part of life. Of course, that is exactly what they did.A Quieter Life has defined itself as an essential piece to be included in any collection as well as DJ sets, Podcasts, top 10 lists later this year etc. Head over to Hallows Bandcamp Page to connect your story to the Hallows' stories. The artwork stands out with two people in full latex or leather suits with the words - A Quieter Life attached to the image should be enough to make you crack a smile and try decipher the message. 450
Brutal Resonance

Hallows - A Quieter Life

8.5
"Great"
Released 2023 by Stoic Media
It seemed like the end of August was so far away when Hallows announced their new album would be released. Finally, in the waning moments of the summer, A Quieter Life LP/CD/Cassette finally breaches the chambers of release date purgatory and flexes itself in its glorious totality.

As I slipped the shiny black slab of wax out of the jacket and placed it on my direct drive turntable, Hallows' sound pierced the otherwise silent house on a peaceful Labor Day eve morning. As the sound ripped through my 1970's Bose 901s, it was then that I realized, Hallows truly found their calling as they entered this next phase of what seems to be an ever evolving endeavor. 

Over the last few months, Hallows released two singles that served as a window into the heart of A Quieter Life. "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed" reacquainted me as well as many others to the same artists that brought us the wonderful All That Is True LP and the Subtle cassette. A Quieter Life was the next step in the progression for Hallows as they drifted further away from the dominant sounds of their previous releases to find refuge into darker realms that explore the complexity of human interactions via relationships and the inevitable existential dread that follows us in the little worlds we inhabit. As we immersed ourselves in the singles, "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed", Hallows raised the bar on their signature rhythms laced with a healthy dose of the melancholy to compliment the themes of self destruction, loneliness and self acceptance. "Talk To Me" is characterized by its tempo changes and fluttering synth work that is enhanced by Vanee's luring and enchanting vocals that gently pull the listener into the subject with a haunting ambience and plenty of command that would make the supernatural envious. "I Am Destroyed" is layed out in a similar fashion as to what we heard on "Talk To Me" in regards to the crafty synthwork and execution. This track features Dom's deep monotone vocal approach which touches the same darkness we heard on "Talk To Me" but took an alternative route to arrive at the same vibe. "Talk To Me" builds slowly like a rolling fog gently swallowing the glen while "I Am Destroyed" is more of a swifter blast with a higher bpm count. Upon digesting these two chapters of A Quieter Life, it became quite evident, Hallows was on to something greater than the sum of it parts. There were stories left to tell and now we can feel the full force of Hallows and the dark delights they crafted.

As we explore deeper into A Quieter Life and search for reasons why everything seems to fit together. The first reason is that I find no preference one way or the other when it comes to the vocals. Both Dom and Vanee compliment each other very well with their vocal styles. They show versatility in their deliveries and demand the listener's attention. For instance, Dom takes the lead on "Awake" with that monotone yet somewhat melodic approach that has become a signature on this album while Vanee takes the lead on "In Solitude" and "Things That Hurt". In the background on "Awake" Vanee adds that ethereal force to solidify its personality. Again, shared responsibility of vocal duties is a big part of what makes this release work. "Bitter End" and "Insanity" are perfect examples of how the album flows regardless of the primary lead. It reinforces the collaborative nature of the end product as A Quieter Life moves from track to track effortlessly. The seamless transitions cloud the mind and force you to submit to the tracks from a holistic point of view rather than isolating the parts into which artist is on vocals or who did the programming. The final piece to A Quieter Life is called "No Restraint". It follows the gloomy open to interpretation themes found in the lyrical scripts and employs the dual vocal approach, however it moves in a different manner than the other seven. The music moves in a purposeful maladroit manner that yields a vastly different musical feel which would lead one such as the reviewer to see the musical approach is solidifying the message in the lyrics. Musically they create a foundation that takes elements from dark wave, synthpop, post punk and even a little EBM and sculpts all of it into eight epic totems of sonic depressive statements that reflect the beauty and tragedy that lives in the darkness metaphorically and perhaps literally as well. 

Hallows makes it quite simple to explore their lyrics as they are built into the Bandcamp page and also come on a nicely designed lyric sheet included in the vinyl packaging. Our lives are constructed by many experiences, some of which are cause and effect based on the patterns to which we subject ourselves to and other times strange synchronicities move in mysterious ways. Life is open to interpretation and so are the stories told here and everywhere. I get an overwhelming sense of loneliness and isolation not just in the words but also in the architecture of the end result. Self-destruction and self-awareness are revealed in the visual realm with "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed".  Click here and here to visually experience the messages of Hallows and read our previous reviews of "Talk To Me" and "I Am Destroyed". 

Over the months, Hallows sent over press kits for us to use for the review. As I explored the press kit, I took notice of how careful the artists were to include absolutely everything one such as myself would need. They anticipated many of the possible questions and even made sure images had the pixel dimensions required on our website. All of this precision and organization was a harbinger to the bigger picture with A Quieter Life. If Hallows took the time to create a press kit with a great sense of awareness it's natural to think they would do that with the music, packaging, their choice of technical assistance, art and everything that is part of life. Of course, that is exactly what they did.

A Quieter Life has defined itself as an essential piece to be included in any collection as well as DJ sets, Podcasts, top 10 lists later this year etc. Head over to Hallows Bandcamp Page to connect your story to the Hallows' stories. The artwork stands out with two people in full latex or leather suits with the words - A Quieter Life attached to the image should be enough to make you crack a smile and try decipher the message.





Sep 03 2023

Luke Jacobs

info@brutalresonance.com
Part time contributor since 2012 with over 150 contributions with reviews, interviews and news articles.

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