The beginning of Black Forest Fire’s story began when guitarist/vocalist Jay C. Tonne Jr. dared friend and fellow vocalist Karen Skloss to prove her worth on the drums. This she did one evening and furthermore the duo wrote several songs that same night which would go on to appear on ‘Transit Of Venus’, their debut album. They soon hooked up with bass player Doug Walseth and a fine band duly emerged.
Some of Black Forest Fire’s songs take a while to bring in the vocals; instead they revolve around circling, ringing, droning guitar figures and pummelled drums. Whereas with some groups, this could smack of self indulgence, here the gesture of confidence is well-founded given the tight musicianship between band members. Thus, across nearly an hour of largely slow-mid paced music, it’s to be expected that there may be moments when the album sags (they do actually sound exhausted by final track ‘New World Order Pilot’) but these moments are few and when they have songs with the weight and gravitas of ‘Do It For Sara’ or ‘Majestic’ at their disposal, the drawn-out approach pays dividends. Credit too for the boy/girl vocals which are strident enough to come to the fore above the carefully constructed melodic patterns.
120 Days. Autolux