There’s a thing in the broader BiS-connected family, apparently, to tease fans by calling things “last” for no clear reason, this turn being GANG PARADE’s to assume the unfortunate title. As we’ve heard so far from one of the weirdest-possible MVs even this weird-embracing website has ever covered, and from a nice run of additional material, GANG PARADE’s LAST album was likely going to follow in the experimental, electronic, whatever-have-you-wave post-pop shut-up-I-can-do-what-I-want footsteps that the group has really made their standard since emerging under their current name and most of the current lineup after, ironically, Barely Last put the POP era completely to bed.
And then they went, you know, what we really need to do is throw all that to the wind and have ourselves a proper BiSH ballad!
Or, I guess, it’s more a late-era OG BiS song that outright BiSH, more early Kentacore than recent additions. And that’s the best Kentacore! So it’s fair to say, dang, in a vacuum in which I’ve never heard a song composed by Matsukuma-san, this keys-and-soaring-strings-and-huge-vocal-hook song is a really pleasing song, a power ballad that puts its power more into manipulating you emotionally than in smashing you in the face. However, given that we are now in Year Something Like Five of Peak Kentacore, which is all of the Kentacore that followed “primal”, we are all too familiar with these moves and, while thoroughly enjoying the song and its trip down memory lane to visit with “ODD FUTURE” and friends, we must nonetheless tsk and shake our heads at this derivative pandering to our good faith! It’s practically … well, it’s not dissimilar to something that would have featured heavily during the “WE ARE the IDOL” / Barely Last era! Oh man!
For real though, I complain, but I’d also listen to this all day. This is the Kentacore that I get out of bed for, you know? All biases covered. Like, I own all but maybe one of Fear Factory’s albums, and they’ve been doing the same thing over and over for 20 years. Sometimes that’s what you need!
Also, while I do tend to find GANG PARADE videos to be at worst a visual adventure, I like how this one draws it down a little bit. Still heavy on a theme? Absolutely. Unconventional? Impossible to be any other way. But all tempered to match the actual tone of the music? Totes magotes.*
LAST almost certainly isn’t the last thing that GANG PARADE’s going to do, and I’m excited to see which twists and turns they add to their unlikely journey in 2019.
*Correct, I did just use that phrase