Pitch Black's self-titled debut is a venomous serum of old-school punk and eerie horror vision that seemingly cannot be slowed down. Made up of former members of the Nerve Agents, Stressboy, Screw 32, and Big Rig, it should go without saying these four men are knowledgeable when it comes to hardcore punk, and while these past groups had their mishaps and rough spots, the musicians have learned from their mistakes. Pitch Black is much more focused, continuously striving to reach the unattainable goal they have their eyes set on, and this focus helps provide structure and an everlasting freshness to each track on the 11-song album. From the steady build-up of "The Bride" to the enthusiastic nasal melodies of "Half Empty," Pitch Black never settle for anything less than indie perfection, molding each song into a living, breathing creature intent on giving one nightmares. Martin Munroe's slapstick bass and signature vocals inject attitude into "Undefeated," which segues smoothly into the mellower punk ballad "Resting Place." The "less is more" guitar mentality in the first three minutes of this song really helps propel it to one of the best tracks on the album. The horror-style sound effects are used sparingly, which maximizes the overall effect, be it the eerie organs, or the distinct sounds of someone digging a grave. One of the songs that displays this best has to be "Spotlight," as the creepy keyboard noise blends in well with Munroe's putrid vocal delivery. Death By Stereo's Paul Miner worked wonders on the production end, allowing the band to maintain their gritty punk style without ever sounding buried underneath a mountain of distortion. This clarity helps make for an enjoyable album that may not be a work of genius, but surely is worth a listen.
Pitch Black Review
by Jason D. Taylor