Album review: THE RED PAINTINGS – The Revolution Is Never Coming

The Red Paintings

[Release date 30.09.13]

If aliens were scanning earth’s frequencies then The Red Paintings’ The Revolution Is Never Coming could well be the summation.  Quite what they’d make of it, I’m not sure.  They’d either think humanity was ripe for harvesting, or way to unstable to even consider making contact with.

The Red Paintings, the brainchild of Australian Trash McSweeney – a man who sees colour in music – is a hugely ambitious project – an apocalyptic combination of performance art and music.  LA based, but with Australian origins, and with support slots as diverse as Mogwai and Missy Higgins, McSweeney’s songs – or should I say observations of the human condition – put him on a level that most could only aspire to with the help of mind-altering substances.

A one man vision – McSweeney’s guitar, sequencing and samples are supplemented by a revolving door of players, but always incorporating orchestral – cello / violins – to encapsulate a maelstrom of sound.  Live, he incorporates sci-fi art rock, human body and canvas painters into the performance, and the late Bryan Carlstrom (Alice In Chains, Rob Zombie) observed that in his 30 year career he’d never mixed ‘such a diverse, colourful and emotionally dynamic album  – a 21st century War Of The Worlds’.

Musically, The Revolution is impossible to pigeonhole – the power and passion of Muse at their best is in evidence, but the The Red Paintings encompass so much more it’s a one-off.  But one that’s an inexorably magnetic vortex.  It may be one man’s madness, or genius – a musical Tim Burton whose visions of geishas, sea creatures, and aliens is impossible to ignore.

He may only have an underground following now, but if you’re up for an ‘out of world’ experience, try The Revolution Is Never Coming.  The Revolution will reach these shores live in November/December (2013).  Be warned – you may never see life, or music, the same way again.  ****

Review by Pete Whalley


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Power Plays w/c 16 September (Mon-Fri)

BLOCK BUSTER Losing Gravity (Frontiers)
WATCH ME BREATHE Don’t Think I Haven’t Thought About It (The Label Group/INGrooves)
FIRES OF FREYA Take A Bow (indie)
BLACK STAR RIDERS Underneath The Afterglow (Nuclear Blast)
STOMPIN’ HEAT Shiny Curly Red Hair (indie)

Featured Albums w/c 16 September (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 THE DEFIANTS Zokusho (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 CORELEONI II (AFM Records)
14:00-16:00 TONY McLOUGHLIN True Native (Fuego)

Albums That Time Forgot (Mon-Fri)

BAD COMPANY Company Of Strangers (1995)



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