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Black Light Burns - "The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall" (CD)

Black Light Burns - "The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall" CD cover image

"The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall" track listing:

1. How To Look Naked (4:04)
2. We Light Up (4:09)
3. I Want You To (3:10)
4. The Girl In Black (4:17)
5. The Colour Escapes (4:00)
6. Tiger By The Tail (3:21)
7. Your Head Will Be Rotting On A Spike (3:13)
8. Torch From The Sky (6:26)
9. Because Of You (3:16)
10. Splayed (3:34)
11. Scream Hallelujah (3:21)
12. Bakelite (7:00)
13. Burn the World (4:18)
14. Grinning Like A Slit (4:24)
15. The Moment You Realize You're Going To Fall (6:53)

Reviewed by on August 21, 2012

"Skirting on the side of viciousness, this second album is proof again of Borland’s knack as a songwriter away from Limp Bizkit."

Better known as the guitarist for Limp Bizkit, everybody’s favorite whipping boys, Wes Borland took it upon himself to explore different avenues with his Black Light Burns project. “Cruel Melody” was heavily invested in industrial metal, though Borland found uses for acoustics and ambience as well. “The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall” is a beast all its own, separate from the influences of “Cruel Melody.” It’s still based around industrial music, though much more direct and suffocating in its techniques. Skirting on the side of viciousness, this second album is proof again of Borland’s knack as a songwriter away from Limp Bizkit.

“Cruel Melody” was full of guest appearances and led by the producing talents of Danny Lohner (Nine Inch Nails). For “The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall,” Borland went alone behind the scenes. He found a few musicians to play alongside, avoiding the addition of any big names to the proceedings. This stripped approach works in the favor of this album, as it doesn’t feel as cluttered as some of the songs on “Cruel Melody” came across. Borland puts everything on his plate, not having to worry about criticism in the studio or being second-guessed on every idea sprouted out of his crafty mind.

Borland turns the distortion on the bass guitar way up on these songs, making them much rawer than “Cruel Melody.” The first few seconds of “We Light Up” is enough to convince one of that opinion. It’s burns with a fastness that was never even hinted at before, and if it doesn’t become a permanent fixture on their set list, that would be a shame. “Tiger By The Tail” and “Splayed” match up with “We Light Up,” though the latter boasts multiple guitar solos that come in one after the other in a thrilling conclusion.

Black Light Burns has never been shy about using stark ambience and industrial noises, and those traits live on with “The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall.” This is prevalent on the latter third of the album, which includes the lofty orchestral strings on “Burn The World” and the arduous build-up on the title track. The album starts to slip slightly at this point, dragging on the heels of lengthy cuts tied close to each other. An exception to this is the Pink Floyd-ish “Torch From The Sky,” with a low-key solo that takes up the bulk of the outro to the song.

While getting high marks as a guitarist, Borland’s vocals are an acquired taste a la System Of A Down’s Daron Malakian. While he’s isn’t a classically trained vocalist, he makes due by contorting and putting odd emphasis on certain notes. It’s unique to say the least, though it may throw off people just coming into Black Light Burns with this album. Fans of “Cruel Melody” already know what to expect, and not much has changed in the short time between those recording sessions.

Originally recorded in ’08 and ’09, “The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall” sat around for years while Borland was busy with Limp Bizkit. Now that it gets its moment in front of the word, the sophomore effort from Black Light Burns is a great follow-up to “Cruel Melody.” Borland going at it without the ears of others around him proved to be a smart decision, though having 15 songs was not as intelligent on Borland’s part. The album gets bogged down with the last few tracks, which is a shame considering how well the rest of the album comes out. “The Moment You Realize You’re Going To Fall” continues Borland’s screwy vision that gets downright reckless at times.

Highs: Heavy distortion on the bass fuels the rawer sound of the album, much more aggressive than "Cruel Melody," feels more focused than the last album

Lows: Borland's vocals are an acquired taste, album drags in the last third

Bottom line: Energy and aggression is oozing out of the second album from Black Light Burns, which continues Wes Borland's vision started with "Cruel Melody."

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)