THE BASTARDS OF FATE Release New Album Today
Tucked into the mountains of southwest Virginia, Roanoke is a city of shadows and mist. The Bastards of Fate didn't move there to become famous-they were born there, to grow up obscure. But as the release of their 2nd album, Vampires are Real and Palpable, approaches, the band's reputation continues to spread like a well-executed piece of vandalism. A handful of rave reviews here, a successful tour of Europe there, and people are beginning to notice.
The Bastards make music for the 21st century, and possibly-if we make it that far as a species-the 22nd, It's a cluttered screaming cacophony of connected isolation. 'Winter of Our Discontent' may be the bleakest, most emotionally wrecked thing you'll hear all year, and 'Own It' might be the funniest-funny the way Kafka is funny, and bleak the way Bataille is bleak. Or is it the other way around? I guess we're trying to say that Bastards write like novelists, that they sing with the soul of a choir, and they sound like nothing else on earth.
Vampires is a darker, altogether more desperate affair than 2012'sWho's a Fuzzy Buddy, sounding less like a studio project and more like a band. It captures the visceral energy of their live shows-a chaotic mess of lightbulbs and screaming. Vampires laughs in the face of its demons; it scowls & weeps when confronted with angels. Cloaked in a sort of Edwardian grandeur, Vampires leaves one's certainties in turmoil. It one of the deepest, most extreme, most tuneful records to emerge in recent memory.
But it's okay if nobody else notices, if the music industry keeps spinning in ever-dwindling sprials until it runs down the drain, The Bastards of Fate already knew the world was broken. And unlike the rest of us, they're learning to live with that knowledge, or at least try to.
For a work of art this forward-thinking, a word like 'revolution' seems too soft, too shallow. This isn't revolution-this is evolution. Grow some thumbs. Start walking upright. Vampires Are Real and Palpable.