Unflinchingly raw, driven, and powerful; the second record from The Blinders surpasses any hints of sophomore syndrome.
Originating from Doncaster, and now based in Manchester, the trio released their debut album, ‘Columbia’ in 2018, achieving both critical and commercial acclaim in the process. Last year saw the band headline shows across Europe, perform at Glastonbury Festival, and release a live album from their sold-out Manchester Ritz gig. 2021 will see The Blinders take to the road on their biggest scale yet, this time in support of their eagerly anticipated new record, ‘Fantasies Of A Stay At Home Psychopath’.
Dwelling in a dusky backdrop laced with brooding rhythms, ‘Something Wicked This Way Comes’ finds raw basslines opening up into commanding vocal hooks, firing away riffs into the gloomy unknown, before ringing out into reverb-doused guitar notes. Setting the murky premise for the rest of the album, the opener draws an assertive pull; taking on the familiarity of the band’s blazing melodies, whilst forming rockier twists and turns.
The blood-rushing choruses of ‘Forty Days and Forty Nights’ see The Blinders at their most punk, racing between heavy bass tones and flaring guitars, whilst stepping into the thralls of dark lyricism which linger throughout the record. Erupting further, ‘Lunatic (With A Loaded Gun)’ is an intense burst of energy, comparably noisy against the subtler tones of ‘Interlude’ and ‘I Want Gold’, yet remaining equally as poetic and introspective in its lyrical explorations.
Lead single, ‘Circle Song’ is easily a standout track from the record, a bluesy, guitar-laden track with a cyclical melody, layered with sweet riffs, and embraced with warm nods to David Bowie and the ‘heroes that die young’. Meanwhile, the grittier tones of ‘Mule Track’ are almost Royal Blood-esque; ascending into the blistering sounds of ‘Rage At The Dying Light’ and ‘From Nothing To Abundance’, before falling back towards the pained screams of ‘Black Glass’.
Bowing out in intricacy, album closer, ‘In This Decade’, presents an air of vulnerability. Simplistic in its melody, and reflective in its lyrics; vocalist Thomas Haywood looks towards the unpredictability of life, a sentiment which feels ever more powerful amongst the presently turbulent world environment.
‘Fantasies Of A Stay At Home Psychopath’ is The Blinders’ most assured venture yet, setting in stone a new degree of confidence and swagger, whilst beginning to push the boundaries of punk and blues.
Listen to the album here: