Crippled black Phoenix
The Great Escape season of mist
Brit prog-metallers’ epic monument to despair.
Crippled Black Phoenix aren’t the first band to follow the trail of breadcrumbs left by Pink Floyd, but somewhere along the path they took a wrong turning and ended up lost in the deep, dark woods.
Their tenth album should be subtitled The Darkest Side Of The Moon. Inspired by drummer/ driving force Justin Greaves’s struggles with depression, and weighing in at a monolothic 90 minutes, it revels in its own desolation. Times They Are A Raging swings from sparse gloom to dense noise and back again, Madman is loaded with claustrophobic keyboards, while the ultra-Floydian, two-part title track is the sonic equivalent of a prism of light that’s been bleached of its colour. But there’s a grim beauty below the surface that saves it from utter bleakness, even if you have to dig deep to find it.