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Between the Buried and Me frontman, Tommy Rogers, has returned with his second autonomous outing under his preferred solo moniker of Thomas Giles. Nearly four years have passed since 'Pulse', his previous masterpiece of sonic auteurship, was delivered so 'Modern Noise' has been something of a long anticipated release. And it's certainly been worth the wait. Immediately, I have to say that, at least on the surface, 'Modern Noise' is not the wonderfully diverse beast that 'Pulse' was. Stylistically, this new one is a much more rounded effort where songs adhere to a more straightforward rockier essence. Think of the likes of 'Sleep Shake', 'Reverb Island' and 'Hypoxia' from 'Pulse' and it's predominantly tracks along those lines here, albeit even more rocked-up in places.

So don't expect the aural diversity that made 'Pulse' such an interesting and engaging work. What we do have on 'Modern Noise', however, is diversity in the depth of emotions that flow through the veins of each and every composition. So while the songs are more bound together stylistically, their affectively divergent essence still provides listeners with a musically multifarious experience. There are one or two stylistic deviations, of course, such as with 'Blueberry Queen' and its Tom Waits infused vibe; a Nils Frahm-esque piece of sublime instrumental ambience with 'Noise Upon'; and the laid-back clean sounds of 'Lkcvjvhljbvj>~A°nnnjmkjijm'. And when I say "rocked-up", that's probably too simple of a description for the album per se; rather, rockier elements are both blended and interspersed with carefully crafted electronica. Then we have Tommy's incredible vocals - which both form and affectively enhance the album's emotionally moving core. With such a wide-ranging, expressive voice, he's able to convey so many profound moods. Again, this is the true source of the album's diversity this time around.

A departure from the greater autonomy he had with 'Pulse', Tommy opted not to perform drums himself this time; instead, Will Goodyear, sticksman from BTBAM's eponymously titled debut, lends his talents. Also one-time bandmates in Tommy's pre-BTBAM venture, Prayer for Cleansing, it seems like a natural rekindling of their bygone musical collaborations. The results are here to be heard - it's a very natural sounding union. BTBAM's virtuosic axeman, Paul Waggoner, pops up too on 'I Appear Disappear' for a rather beautiful guitar solo. All in all, though, 'Modern Noise' is Tommy's baby and, despite the album title's "here and now" stamp, this is a timeless work of musical ingenuity.
Metal Blade
Review by Mark Holmes
24th Nov 2014
1) Wise and Silent; 2) Mutilated World
3) Siphon the Bad Blood
4) I Appear Disappear
5) Blueberry Queen
6) We Wander Lonely
7) M3
8) Lkcvjvhljbvj>~A°nnnjmkjijm
9) Noise Upon
10) Wander Drug
11) The Devil Net
12) Modern Noise
"...despite the album title's "here and now" stamp, this is a timeless work of musical ingenuity."