Black Tape for a Blue Girl — 10 Neurotics
(Projekt 229, 2009, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2010-07-01
Well, I have to be honest right out of the box, here. The lyrical content of this disc is so intense, permeated in dark sexual fetishism and disturbing first-hand details of troubling personal relationships in almost every one of the fourteen songs (except for one short instrumental), that I’m finding it too uncomfortable to approach this content in a review, so I won’t. I’ve always liked what Black Tape had to offer on all their previous releases, a sort of dreamy and dark soft pop with lush poetic lyrics – or at least that’s the way I remember them. This is the first new release in quite some time – apparently the band was inactive for a period while founder / songwriter Sam Rosenthal pursued other projects. As a result there is almost an entirely new crew for this one, and with the exception of a couple cuts that sound reminiscent of their older material (“Marmalade Cat,” “I Strike You Down”), most of these songs take a new approach, built up from acoustic guitar, void of much the dreaminess. Instead the style is more direct and stark, using a number of different singers (male and female, all excellent I might add) to act out the characters’ parts in the lyrics. The end result is a disc that, on a strictly musical level, seems a lot more conventional: drums, guitars, bass… one song here flat rocks out like nothing I’ve ever heard from BT previously. It’s a new direction, but one that should still please longtime fans and newcomers alike.
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