Justin Greavescomments: “Some songs depart from my mind into reality without consent. ‘Winning A Losing Battle’ is one of those. The track just barged itself into the world. It is also one of the musically unconventional Crippled Black Phoenix style of songs that keep appearing on our albums. The title says it all. We have been through a lot of adversity as a band in these past two years and even though it seemed that all is doomed at times – I/we never gave up or gave in. We just say ‘screw you’ to the people and forces that tried to bring us down. Crippled Black Phoenix win, and always will.”
The artwork of‘Bronze’ can be viewed together with the now released track-list below.
01. Dead Imperial Bastard
02. Deviant Burials
03. No Fun
04. Rotten Memories
05. Champions Of Disturbance (Pt 1 & 2)
06. Goodbye Then
07. Turn To Stone
08. Scared And Alone
09. Winning A Losing Battle
10. We Are The Darkeners
Bronze consists primarily of copper, but it is the inclusion of other metals and non-metals that gives this alloy its specific characteristics. Ever since mankind discovered the secret of its making thousands of years ago, the golden and shining bronze has changed the course of history, spawned destruction and war, yet also been crafted into desired objects of extreme beauty.
You will find each of these traits inherent in the sixth studio album of CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX, which is aptly taking its title from this fateful alloy. Instead of copper, dark rock forms the base ingredient in this musical amalgamation process, but it is the addition of metal, progressive influences, gothic, wave, even pop, and many other elements as well as a changing cast of musicians that result in each song shining with its own individual hue and tone. Yet a deep sense of anguish, despair, longing, loss, melancholy, and nostalgia forms a binding force that holds ‘Bronze’ together and formulates an encompassing theme.
This musical darkness is reflected in the lyrical themes dominating the record, which partly revolve around battling inner demons and resisting oppression. The constant struggle comes as no surprise when taking into account that poetic mastermind Justin Greaves has recently gone public about his personal fight against severe depression. For him, not letting the “black dog” devour you is a big message mixed within his songs.
CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX have always confounded critics trying to pin their style down ever since multi-instrumentalist Justin Greaves recorded his first ideas in 2004 – which earned them tagging attempts ranging from “stoner prog” to “freak folk” to “psychedelic doom”. Despite the wide range of musical leanings within their albums, there are a unifying dark streak and sombre melancholy running through the songs. Founder Justin Greaves had already made himself a name as drummer for IRON MONKEY and ELECTRIC WIZARD among others. When the multi-instrumentalist finally decided to stand on his own musical feet, CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX was born as a project. This involves a changing cast of musicians and live set-ups, which mirror the ever ongoing evolution of the band and the fact that the songs were mostly not composed with their live performance on mind.
Between 2007 and 2014, CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX released a string of five critically highly acclaimed studio albums – from ‘A Love of Shared Disasters’ (2007), via ‘The Resurrectionists’ (2009), ‘Night Raider’ (2009), ‘(Mankind) The Crafty Ape’ (2012), until ‘White Light Generator’ (2014). This was complemented by EPs ‘I, Vigilante’ (2010), ‘No Sadness or Farewell’ (2012), and ‘Oh’ Ech-oes’ (2015), the live recording ‘Live Poznan’ (2013), and the ‘200 Tons of Bad Luck’ compilation (2009). Their ‘New Dark Age Tour EP 2015 A.D.’ was the band’s first release on Season of Mist that came with an extensive homage to PINK FLOYD. The strong influence of the UK rock giants can still be felt on ‘Bronze’, yet while CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX never denied their roots, this outstanding act has long created their own sonic cosmos and now takes it a dimension further. Be warned that ‘Bronze’ will infect you with a most deep fascination. Shine on…
‘Bronze’ was recorded at Chapel Studio and mixed with Karl Daniel Lidén.