‘But then I feel in love’ (Heartbreaker)
Oh my, did I!
In the bulging walking across the top of a circle pit screaming vein honesty of one Frank Carter, let’s get this out of the way immediately and say I FUCKING LOVE THIS ALBUM!!!! If you are of the inclination of taking issue with the 10/10 that these words are ultimately going to soar into at the end, you might want to go back to your well played living in the past favs box once again, for the rest of humanity, plus Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes, we’re running forward, screaming with belief and wide eyed glee, into the possibilities of what can and is yet to be achieved.
But first… I was watching an interview with a director the other day. His name is Joesph Russo and he’s just released a small movie he directed with his brother Anthony, which they humbly called ‘Avengers: Endgame’ (2019). You should look it up if you’ve not heard of it, it’s very good.
In the interview Joe made the fleeting point ‘Nothing has value, unless it has an ending’. To many that might be a passing comment that bares no heed nor thought beyond that moment, but if you are of a creative spirit, or an actual artist attuned to the globe, this will stop you dead in your tracks. Because to truly grow, some things must die. Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes are true artists.
Back in 2017 Flush covered their second release ‘Blossom’. We’re naturally huge fans of the band being they are SO much more than just a rock up, get everyone to nod along, wasn’t that a nice evening of entertainment vibe. They are a creative force far more likely to try to physically and emotionally tear you apart with the battle roar of terror and riffs, yet you will never feel more alive, after being baptised by the sweat of a hundred plus euphoric faithfuls spinning round you like a feral whirl pool in rapture.
‘Blossom’ was a clear transition from it’s predecessor ‘Modern Ruin’ (2015), and now they are both merely the foundation for what is being built in 2019’s aptly named ‘End of Suffering’.
Throughout the previous works and still yet, there is a distinct journey/quest to enlightenment. Building on the rubble of experiences (often negative), moments, relationships and proactively learning from mistakes (Frank is often brutally, well frank on social media about his life/addictions/missteps), moving forward with an attuned focus. It should come as no surprise that ‘End of Suffering’ is a Buddhist term taken from The Four Noble Truths, basically a contingency plan for dealing with life. Definitely not a bad place to start if you want to positively inspire the world, and look after your own headspace too.
Briefly, The First Truth identifies the suffering, The Second Truth aims to identify the causes, The Third, end of suffering in life/spiritually (the ultimate aim being to reach spiritual Nirvana), and The Fourth charts the method for attaining the end of suffering, and it itself is called the Noble Eightfold Path. You of course don’t need to know all this, but Christ does it make this album glow and transcend if you do.
But of course it’s all about the music, and where to start? Produced by Cam Blackwood (George Ezra / Jack Savoretti), and mixed by the god like presence of Alan Moulder (Nine Inch Nails / Queens Of The Stone Age / Marilyn Manson / Foo Fighters / Royal Blood), such wide and varied influences and much more are all over this album as well as hints of Nick Cave or The Stooges . Written by Frank and Dean Richardson, the lyrics are flexing hugely (somewhat QOTSA opener ‘Why A Butterfly Can’t Love A Spider’ is a bizarre title that rings true with no purer option), constantly stepping into the fecund meadows of the greats, this collective is on the best form they have ever been, and it wonderfully/teasingly feels like we’ve seen nothing yet. They are constantly learning, evolving and sharing the newfound knowledge.
There is swagger, ‘Love Games’, or ‘Tyrant Lizard King’ (featuring none other than Tom Morello) there is carpet burn emotionally raw, ’Angel Wings’, insecurities, ‘Latex Dreams’ (with my favourite line ‘a hurricane in a little red tong’), revolt, ‘Crowbar’, tenderness, ‘Super Villain’ and the universal anthemic rise from the ashes ‘Anxiety’, all captured with the finest vocals Frank has EVER done, his voice has expanded and glows in a full spectrum of capabilities, matching the growing colours on the cover, it is FUCKING BEAUTIFUL! Also BEAUTIFUL is the closing track ‘End Of Suffering’.
This album isn’t about residing where someone has been, living on past glories/crisis, this is about healing and heading into a collective rapturous future. To grow ever bigger, snakes naturally shed their skin (it’s called ecdysis), leaving past scars and parasites behind them. Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes may not be wholly recognisable to the core that myopically followed his Gallows years, but they can still kill you with one preacher ‘n riff bite.
‘End of Suffering’ Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes is out now. Check http://andtherattlesnakes.com/ for more details.