A Place To Bury Strangers - Worship

It’s a concoction of everything APTBS are great at – distortion, intensity and darkness, but it’s also all over the place.

Label: Dead Oceans

Rating: 6

New York drone dons A Place To Bury Strangers release their new album ‘Worship’ to high expectations. After the 2009 scuzz rock masterpiece ‘Exploding Head’ they set the noise bar extremely high. ‘Worship’ is an entirely a self-produced affair, and unfortunately this independence hasn’t done them any favours.

Churning lead track ‘You Are The One’ is a slowed-down, drugged-out anti-love love anthem. The distorted background chords haunt the dark depths of Ackerman’s visceral wailing. However, there is no real focal point in this song, as it rather monotonously slips in and out of tempo and trauma.

Follow up ‘Mind Control’ steps up the pace and could effortlessly feature in any of David Lynch’s twilight scenes with its menacing story-telling elements and unsettling vibrating effects. It’s certainly the highlight of the album. As Ackerman reaches the vocal depths of Motorhead’s Lemmy on tranquilizers on eponymous track ‘Worship’, the entire album slips into a hazy void of too much confusion and too little musical concentration. It’s indeed a concoction of everything APTBS are great at – distortion, intensity and darkness, but it’s also all over the place.

The sound structures are nowhere near as tight as on its predecessors and with the band relinquishing control on production, the songs tend to spill over their musical confines lacking direction. Dream pop numbers such as the uncharacteristically tender ‘Dissolved’ stand next to drama drone rock such as ‘Revenge’, which unfortunately makes ‘Worship’ an exhaustingly incoherent listen.