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Album review: The White Buffalo - Love and the Death of Damnation

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★★★★☆

Love and the Death of Damnation has finally dropped in Europe.

Love and Death of Damnation

The third major label album by Americana star The White Buffalo was originally released in the States in August 2015.

And after signing a deal with Earache Records, it seems that the artist’s Deep South sound is being brought to a worldwide audience.

And this is a record that definitely deserves to be heard worldwide.

The White Buffalo’s blend of country, Southern and acoustic rock is a recipe for international success, especially given the popularity and recognition folk artists like Mumford & Sons are currently enjoying.

The White Buffalo’s Love and the Death of Damnation takes the traditional folk formula and gives it an undeniably American twist with Jake Smith’s deep and raw Southern accent.

It is a record comprised of many a melancholic and heavenly ballad – most notably 'Radio with No Sound' and 'Last Call to Heaven' – along with upbeat, high-energy cuts like 'Modern Times' and 'Chico'.

While the changes in tempo may only be small and rather rare, they definitely allow for Love and the Death of Damnation to continue to be entertaining and feel fresh, preventing the album from running out of steam before its conclusion.

This album is definitely one for the working man or woman, a celebration and lamentation of the US day-to-day, demonstrating the ups and downs of everyday life. The strongest quality of Love and the Death of Damnation is The White Buffalo’s songwriting, which remains insightful, relatable and poetic with perfect storytelling.

This is writing that feels legitimate, genuine, emotional and visceral. And the music of the songs compliments their individual tones and subject matters incredibly well: without paying much attention to his lyrics, you would still be able to tell with great accuracy the emotions conveyed in The White Buffalo’s music.

Every emotion on this album – from joy to sorrow and everything in between – is communicated on both a conscious and subconscious level.

Folk music – especially country – has always had the central themes of emotions, individualism and storytelling.

Love and the Death of Damnation has the three of these in spades: it is an experience that feels genuine and personal, filled with highs and lows. It’s an album from a band I feel destined to be a household name very soon.

Finally, we have a record that can win over the hearts of the mainstream crowd without feeling commercial, over-produced, uninspired or generic. And that is a fantastic thing to be able to say.

Love and the Death of Damnation is available physically and digitally now via Earache Records.




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