Boomkat Product Review:
‘And Salford Falls Apart’ is the searing 2nd EP of cinematic drill noise by North West polymath, Blackhaine; five tracks staging a brutalist, exhaustive expression of disaffection with life in a post Brexit England of the early 2020s, set to exemplary production by Rainy Miller & Croww - massive RIYL Death Grips, Joy Division, Space Afrika, PiL, Evian Christ.
Between the stomach-knotted dread of its opener ‘Saddleworth’, the caustic fulmination of its Rainy Miller-produced title track, and the magisterial poise of parting shot ‘Let Me Know’; the EP sees Blackhaine develop a more personalised, storytelling articulation of life in the precariat; drawing on the experience of unsatisfying jobs and a love of social-realist film (the eponymous La Haine), surrealist literature (Samuel Beckett), and road level, punk-spirited music - from John Lydon’s formative post-punks PiL, to the bruxist, staccato delivery of donk MCs - to wrest a vital, remediating energy from the void.
Now pronounced with a broader range of poetic and textural tekkerz, Blackhaine’s sound is deeply gratifying and absorbing in its psychic purging and knife-edge urgency. Its incursions on the no-person’s-land between detuned drill, noise, and industrial ambient paradigms are as vital as they come at the start of a new, foreboding decade - baldly resetting boundaries and rekindling a fire in the gut-level consciousness of rap and punk musicks that echoes the North West’s indefatigable spirit, and likewise spearheads a crucial new movement. When factored by his uncanny gift for physicality, as inspired by traditional Japanese butoh dance and petrified city centre spice heads, Blackhaine’s art patently refuses, as much as acknowledges, the pressures of the times.