WL//WH Video of the Day: BLANKSCREEN “Garden Fires”

Video of the Day BLANKSCREEN

Canadian no-wave punk power trio BLANKSCREEN, comprised of Robyn Bond (drums), Sam Reilly (bass, vocals) and Evan Moore (guitar, vocals) stand out as one of the most intriguing and distinctive band to recently emerge from Toronto underground music scene, with a minimalistic yet energetic and urgent take on 80’s influenced post-punk defined by sharp and angular guitar riffs, ominous and pulsing cold bass lines and obsessive crashing drums over forlorn vocals, sprinkled with no-wave abrasiveness and dissonance and augmented with cryptic, imaginative lyrics. 

New single “Garden Fires” only confirms those premises.

A strong unity between instrumentation, lyrics, and visuals can be found in the enigmatic pieces themselves as all three situations occur without warning, under hushed circumstances, and have life-altering effects.

A brief soaring intro made up of hypnotic bass throbs, strikingly stark and sombre guitar picks and lost dreamy vocals of nostalgia culminate into the piercing intensity of a lone urgent bleeding note. Ominous and foreboding hard-hitting drums vigorously pound with urgency, rich pulsating bass lines rumble underneath, and piercing crystalline guitar melodies all vehemently ignite rising, sarcastic, and acrimonious vocals of dark brooding, anxiety. Irate, repetitive primal screams of reminiscent trauma yell, “I remember those days. Now those places don’t shine the same,” and release the pain in catharsis.

Intimate lyrics look back in time to reveal a lifetime conversation held from the cradle through today between two souls. An immutable existence of love, loss, secrets and time ciphered through the four seasons.

The compelling companion view, directed by Jordan Lee-Tung, depicts a life-changing night in the life of video using cut scene and time-lapse photography to dissect, splice, and reconfigure the hazy memory of an abstruse occurrence. Muted screams, golden masks, and bodies writhing in pain set against the backdrop of a cold dark night by the campfire. An inventive, entertaining, and at times humorous slice of life intentionally left open for the imagination to interpret.

Lyrics and visuals complement each other wonderfully sharing the close friends with enduring loyalty quality as they both illustrate a timeless bond, unshaken by circumstance, unswayed by fear.

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