Wednesday 12 July 2017

Review: The Dreaming – 'From The Ashes'

'From The Ashes'

The second outing on Metropolis Records from the former Stabbing Westward team, 'From The Ashes' sees the band continue to evolve beyond their past with this remix companion to their 2015 album 'Rise Again'. Offering up harder industrial and club-orientated versions of the strongest cuts from the previous album it hints at numerous possible directions the band's next outing could take them.

Two years on from their last album is a bit of a gap for a companion/stop-gap release such as this, and it would have been nice to have a couple of new tracks one here to give it a little more selling points. Nevertheless this album is a totally in-house affair and the remixes in some cases actually trump the originals, so hopefully this will mean the next album will be somewhat informed by the work going on here.

Tracks such as 'Alone (ReAmped RMX)', 'Blink Of An Eye (Big Sky RMX)', 'Afraid (Vapor RMX)', 'Throw It All Away (Red Ox RMX)', and 'Rise Again (All Nite Diner RMX)', balance club-friendly industrial electronics with the band's trademark industrial rock style quite nicely, not sounding too far one way or the other. It's a nice balance that refreshes their material, but it isn't always successful. Some offerings such as 'Painkillers (2 Drink Minimum RMX)', 'Still Believe (Donut Shop RMX)', and 'Destroy (Tuf Luv RMX)' just sound ridiculously overblown and contrived.

The production is pretty solid for the most part, but at the band's most indulgent there are times where the vocals are swamped by the sheer amount of stuff going on in the mix. It's not the most well-rounded sounding albums but when it works, it works pretty well.

This is perhaps one of those albums that could have been condensed into an EP, or even been opened up to other collaborators to inject some stylistic variations to proceedings. Certainly the lack of new material is to its detriment, but overall there are some great remixes that will extend the album's dance floor reach further. Hopefully the next full-length studio album will drop sooner rather than later and the band can build on that momentum.  

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