Palaye Royale - The Bastards | Album Review

Though it is a tall order, the majority of musicians across the world create such raw and emotionally charged soundtracks in an effort to navigate their treacherous paths for view of peace and an escape from inner turmoil. Such a trusted and proven method has recently been illustrated by Palaye Royale‘s distinct shift in their musical wonderland to what can only be described as a sinister and overtly-aggressive space on their long awaited 3rd studio album The Bastards.

This brutal hyper-reality created by the Kropp brothers delves into the trauma laden mind of their front man Remington Leith, who details such deeply personal subject matter relating to his turbulent and troubled upbringing. To bare ones tormented soul has been and always will be an admirable feat for any individual, but a worrisome entity living in the undertones of such a bombastic entry to their discography, is at heart an intense and violent affair to witness.

Trauma in varying forms, has indefinitely shaped the creation of this album with such songs as ‘Massacre, The New American Dream’, toting its anti-gun violence message like the demented wailings of banshee; and ‘Doom (Empty)’ strapping us into the withdrawal stages of a presumed menacing hallucinogenic trip, which could also be read as the withdrawal stages Leith went through when facing the present devastating effects of his childhood.

Although each track on the album in their singular forms could all easily be up for discussion in front of a registered psychologist; two highlights can leave quite the lasting impression with audiences, in the form of ‘Lonely’ and ‘Redeemer’.

The track ominously known as ‘Lonely’ reveals a much more vulnerable and broken side to Leith’s maniacal screaming fits, with an agenda fixated on his fractured relationship with his father, the process of developing numbness through drug dependency as well as his struggles with suicidal ideation. Heartbreaking is not nearly sophisticated enough to describe such an admission of overwhelming dread and despair, especially since the basis of such mental misery isn’t coming from the version of Leith that we have all come to know and recognise, but his inner child-like self still begging for help in the midst of reckless abandonment.

‘Redeemer’ on the other hand strips away any audible identity relating to the main function of the albums progression, but reuses aspects of the lyrical content as a basis for where emotional dependency kicks into his present platonic and romantic relations. This final track emulates a presence of chaotic obsession and addictive personality traits born out of the past tracks damaging impact on Leith, which in truth all represent moments in his lifetime filled with degradation and devastation.

For well over a decade Palaye Royale have dazzled audiences with their alternative grandioso approach to modern rock, today they flipped their own narrative to one of great sorrow and regret; pounding audiences with the truth of their muse without a “get out of hell free card”, to experience the resounding brutality cutting through the speakers and through each of our souls. In truth this album is an impactful soundtrack studying the mutilation of innocence, it is not an easy listening experience but it is an important one to be heard and understood; and maybe, just maybe the Kropp brothers can finally breathe a sigh of relief with such a weight finally unburdened from their load.

Score: 7/10

The Bastards is released May 29th via Sumerian Records. Purchase the record here.


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