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Album Review: New Minds by Pink Frost

Chicago quartet Pink Front release their first new album in four years, New Minds on 16th June via Under Road Records. The album addresses a collective sense of abrupt changes. “There is a sentimentality or a sense of loss that permeates most of the songs,” says vocalist/guitarist Adam Lukas. “Whether that is the loss of truth, the ones you love, your place in the universe, or general sense of meaning in changing landscapes.”

New Minds proves to be an immense growth in dynamics, introspection and the band’s own sense of identity. The album showcases a diverging identity in which the straight-ahead rock songs are heavier and darker, while the blissed out space jams and melodies are more delicate and personal. recorded in Chicago at Steve Albini’s legendary Electrical Audio studio with engineer Gregoire Yeche, just as the band has done on Sundowning (2013) and the Traitors EP (2014). “Electrical Audio is almost like another member of the band at this point,” Lukas says. “There is a purity to their method that captures the essence of the performance and preserves it in this magical 3-D way.”

This album shows Pink Frost at the very top of their game, fusing a 90s hard rock approach with a more modern alt rock nuance for an immediate hit. Album opener and title track hits with immediate power but it’s second track ‘Bare Roots’ that really hits home and showcases the talents of the band. There’s a Black Sabbath-esque heaviness coupled with a loud-quiet-loud tactic making it instantaneous and immediate.

It’s the louder, heavier moments that Pink Front really shine. ‘Avian’ goes for a psychedelic ballad slant, and while it’s interesting it just doesn’t have the impact of the bigger tracks. ‘Seek and Recover’ brings things back to heavy hard rock with real panache. It’s the standout track with energy and hard rock swagger bursting out. Scroll to the end of the review for an exclusive first play of the track.

The simmering anthem “Burn Before Dawn” leads into the subtle album closer “We No Time” — a slight reference to the song “We Know Time” from the band’s first album, but even more so an adaptation of a song that precedes the band, originally recorded by Lukas on 4-track cassette using drum loops and sounds that were painstakingly reconstructed in the studio. While the song was being mixed, riots were breaking out in the streets during the inauguration of Donald Trump, which can be heard in news snippets fading in toward the end of the song.

AD Rating 7/10

 

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