When I listened to Selfless by Crying Vessel aka Slade Templeton a couple years back I was impressed by the attention to detail. Everything from the mixing to the subtleties in the programming was something that was easy to admire. After listening to his latest release Everything Becomes Nothing I can unequivocally say that the same attention to detail is present here.
The album is full of rich instrumentation and Templeton took no shortcuts in working with some of the best musicians available. Templeton worked with Chris Pitman (Guns N Roses, Tool) and Dean Garcia (Curve, Mick Jagger) to name a few. On top of that he worked with vocalist Rose Berlin, Joey Kirk, Dead Astronauts and Sick Boy all of whom contribute to one song each. The variation between vocalists was a great way of keeping the album not only engaging but surprising.
The nihilistic title is reflected throughout the music. Perhaps this was because the music itself can draw comparison to Nine Inch Nails. The post-apocalyptic industrial mesh of electronic elements and distorted guitars is ubiquitous across the album. These were my first thoughts about comparisons but not my last. Other times Depeche Mode came to mind while other songs had an R&B down tempo flavor. More on that later.
The album begins with the title track “Everything Becomes Nothing” and starts off trudging through mounds of dark music that sounds somewhere between Nine Inch Nails and Portishead. I thought the song went into some welcome yet unexpected places. The vocal harmonies at around a-minute-and-a-half in sound like something you would hear from TV on the Radio.
I thoroughly enjoyed Dead Astronauts’ vocals on “Floating Dead.” If you listen closely you will notice a tinge of Bryan Ferry and David Bowie. “Shadows” is one of the catchiest and energy filled songs on the album. The drumbeat and synth breed dark energy from the bottom of the abyss that you can dance to.
Arguably the highlight of the album is “What A Mess You Made.” Everything about this track is top notch. First off the music is great. The trip-hop style beats hit hard and is surrounded with creative sound design. It's ambient, nuanced and would have been great without vocals. That being said Rose Berlin kills it. Her voice is smooth, silky while being devilishly dark and stoic. As the album progresses “Blood Red Moon” was one of the stronger songs that I'll be revisiting soon.
Overall, Everything Becomes Nothing is a success because of the combination of intricate, headphone worthy music and strong vocal performances. The songs are fun to explore with an attentive ear but also work if you want to crank the music and feel the overall energy.
We are dedicated to informing the public about the different types of independent music that is available for your listening pleasure as well as giving the artist a professional critique from a seasoned music geek. We critique a wide variety of niche genres like experimental, IDM, electronic, ambient, shoegaze and much more.
Are you one of our faithful visitors who enjoys our website? Like us on Facebook