EP Review: Another Perfect Day – Four Songs for the Left Behind
Release date: April 20, 2012
Label: Supreme Chaos Records
Genre: Progressive / Melodic Death Metal
Four Songs for the Left Behind doesn’t contain four songs. It contains five; four original compositions and one cover of Motörhead’s Another Perfect Day, all of considerable duration.
Over two years ago I reviewed an album by a German one-man band called Another Perfect Day. The project is the brainchild of Kristian “Kohle” Kohlmannslehner, who also runs his own recording studio. Said album, titled The Gothenburg Post Scriptum, is a masterpiece. Through the past two years it has proven itself that time and time again. Amazing melodies and cunning progressiveness are mixed with the deepest of death growls and many an unorthodox element. Anyway, masterpiece, as said.
Now, you may have noticed it’s been rather quiet here at The Baboon. There are multiple reasons, but the main one is that my time to review anything is pretty much reduced to negative numbers, as my job has taken me to China and I’m working my balls off. Second reason is that there’s no YouTube access in China, except through VPN, but that’s just too slow to load anything. The third reason is that I’m just a lazy pig and I smell of manure.
But then, the other day, I got a message from Kohle, about the release of his new EP, Four Songs for the Left Behind and I was offered a promo pack as well. Pretty much at the same time reader Shaft dumped me the links to all five songs on Four Songs and given my experience with The Gothenburg Post Scriptum I just couldn’t let this one slip. So working in negative time, here’s my review of Kohle’s latest achievement.
Four Songs for the Left Behind picks up where The Gothenburg Post Scriptum left off. The above described combination of sophistication and moderation in melodies and progressive playing and brutal vocals is still present. Like with TGPS, Kohle’s clean singing voice also plays an important part and it does so wonderfully.
Therefore the keyword on Four Songs is contrast. The EP doesn’t ever become as excessively loud as Death Metal can be, but, in the other direction, it does get really soft and gentle. Opening track Pour Some Hope features a fragile sadness alternated with a little vented anger or frustration. Lead guitars, like in any of the songs, play an important part and have a distinct Prog Rock feel to them. In general even, Four Songs has a very Pink Floydian feel and, moreover, reminds me of both Opeth and Porcupine Tree as well. But important to note here is that Four Songs never, ever feels like a copy.
How that’s achieved is a riddle to me, but part of it has to do with original neo-classical elements Kohle stirred through. In You Better Run… But Don’t Walk Away, operatic female vocals set a scene, together with, what I think are, strummed and normally-played violins. But the song’s intro – which over two and a half minute by the way – is strangely horrifying. The opera singers seems to run into an axe murderer on stage and starts violently screaming. But rather than full of fear, the scream is full of theatrical display and drama.
Anyway, after someone quickly wipes all the blood off the stage, the floor is given to one of the most solid sections on the EP, with heavy riffage and snarling grunts, combined with a tear-jerking melancholy.
The Motörhead cover Another Perfect Day, also obviously the project’s name-giver, retains nothing of the original beer-soaked dirtiness, but has been transformed in an emotion-rife and anger-contained killer of a song that has maximum impact to the human brain’s contemplation and reminiscence centers. A similar effect is achieved by closing song Stab the Knife… In the Name of Your Cross, which also features a more raw angle of attack in terms of vocals.
In general, Four Songs for the Left Behind does well what made The Gothenburg Post Scriptum so well. I feel no urge to directly qualitatively compare the two releases head-on, but I do want to express how Four Songs features all of TGPS’ strengths. The difference is, perhaps, that Four Songs offers more in terms of sauce; varying original elements that keep things interesting and refreshing, but is a little less varied in terms of moods.
Four Songs is an EP that needs to be enjoyed preferably with a good strong drink – I recommend a good whisky – on the couch in an almost dark living room with no one else in the house. There needs to be nothing that can stand between you, the music and your thoughts going places.
My Grade: 8.5/10
Buy this when:
- you quite fancy the idea of Melodeath and Prog Rock in one go
- you need something to think about your life by
- music doesn’t all need to be butt-grindingly loud