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Record Review: Battle Not With Monsters (2010)

June 15, 2010

Battle Not With Monsters hailing from Durham, North Carolina produced their self-titled record and released it May 2010. The packaging is immediately attractive, with a glossy black and red cover that shows complexity but also simplicity (if that makes any sense).

The album opens up with folky political anthem “J20.” You quickly hear the duo guitars and vocals come together, complimenting one another. Blackburn with his sullen and dark lyrics and Hollingsworth’s raspy and high energy vocals. The melodies and hooks quickly are memorized in your head. “Blush to Eternity”  invites the listener into the darker side of BNWM. “Alone” and “Save Me As I Am” quickly follow suit. Leaving the lyrics open for interpretation, Patrick Blackburn and Phillip Hollingsworth clearly write lyrics that have meaning to them, rather than attempting to write a story with false meaning. The next three tracks “Song About Freedom” with a surprise banjo sound, “Ode to Allen Ginsberg” and “Send You To War” show BNWM’s music repertoire. The listener is greeted with well-written lyrics and hooks. Although radio friendly, the music speaks to people keeping an open mind. These three tracks work so well together due to the flow of the album, making the record easily enjoyable. “Take Me Home” continues to illustrate their deep roots in story telling through mellow lyrics and intelligence. The love song “Rest of Your Life” continues to show BNWM’s abilities has songwriters and is also the lone song with drums. The closeout track “Hope and Disaster” allows the listener to focus on the experimental side of BNWM. The lyrics and music cannot be explained via record review!

Overall, BNWM’s first album I would deem a success. The album demonstrates many positives and future success in the local scene as the band continues to branch. I feel the album does lack some of the excitement of their live show. However, BNWM wanted to try something different with their first record. They have already started work on their sophomore effort. If you take anything away from Battle Not With Monsters it is their thought-provoking lyrics and love of  music that binds the duo.

Below you can find some more information on Battle Not With Monsters:


Facebook: Battle Not With Monsters


From → Record Reviews

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