Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

Bdrmm's I Don't Know is an enigma to unravel

"I Don't Know"

Release date: 30 June 2023
bdrmm - I Don't Know cover
27 June 2023, 09:00 Written by Craig Howieson

Perhaps one of the most uniquely special things about music is its ability to capture moments and places, while simultaneously transcending them.

Hull four-piece bdrmm have the ability to take a snapshot of their stifling surroundings while also tapping into an unseen current that lays the world wide open.

It is something a number of their new label mates on Rock Action are also adept at. Home to the likes of The Twilight Sad and Kathryn Joseph, there is a common thread running through the dark beauty that is born from the most unassuming surroundings.

Following the success of their debut, and heavy touring that followed, the four members of bdrmm have now seen far beyond the perimeter of their hometown, and those experiences are soaked into the fabric of their follow up I Don’t Know. The longing shoegaze of their earlier work still persists, but it is no longer tempered by a longing to escape, it is emboldened by a knowledge of the beauty that lies beyond.

It would be a disservice to describe I Don’t Know as simply a rock record. The fantastic "It’s Just A Bit Of Blood" may sound like early Radiohead being eaten alive by My Bloody Valentine, but there is an experimental depth to the album that incorporates a far broader spectrum of reference points than the band have touched on to date. Psychedelia, post-rock and electronic ambience glisten like webs in the dark and provide an escape chute from whatever caustic environment you may be inhabiting.

Tracks flow through undefined phases and morph into one another leaving it hard to keep track, but it also provides a comforting reassurance that this record is yours to make of what you will. At times disconcerting, at others uplifting there are chasms of both sadness and optimism to submerge yourself into.

Nothing is fixed down on I Don’t Know, allowing a refreshing freedom of interpretation. The opening guitar riff of “We Fall Apart” is like a knock on the door that never gets answered, and Ryan Smith's voice is used as a texture as much as it is a tool for delivery throughout the album's eight tracks.

By the time of the record's colossal closing track “A Final Movement” it is clear that bdrmm have no intention of revealing the secrets held within I Don’t Know. They do not attempt to define themselves or nail their colours to the mast in terms of any style or genre, yet seem utterly confident in the direction they are heading. On album number two, instead of writing out a cheat sheet, they have created an enigma for you to unravel. One of dark beauty and twisting longing.

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