Review: Borgne – [∞] (Avantgarde Music, Mar 30)

Though at this point Borgne has technically been around for over two decades, the project has only been operating consistently since 2007. Originally solely consisting of multi-instrumentalist Bornyhake, the new record welcomes Lady Kaos on keyboards. I would never guess that the band is a duo, however; [∞] is an astonishingly detailed and lush record even without considering the fact that it was made by only two people. Each track is uniquely oppressive, piling countless icy layers atop pummeling blast beats and Kaos’s grandiose synths. The compositions are contorted and disorienting, but the atmosphere is never sacrificed; Bornyhake’s tortured vocals intertwine with harmonizing tremolo riffs and sludgey, dense chords that maintain an overwhelming darkness that presides over the progression. Unsettling electronic textures are also frequently added, almost throwing everything off balance; yet it only adds to the anger and uneasiness already present. [∞] is quite an ambitious album, but most of the risks it takes pay off ten times over. Insane moments like the noisy industrial beat that kicks in at the end of “Comme si ça s’arrêtera / Stone” giving way to the majestic symphonics of “I Tear Apart My Blackened Wings Pt. 1” shouldn’t work, but man, they really do. I am excited to listen to [∞] many more times, and to see where this creative project goes next.

Pick up the LP here (ships April 8th).