The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Texas A&M pitcher Evan Aschenbeck (53) reacts after throwing the final strike out during Texas A&M’s game against Mississippi State on Saturday, March 23, 2024, at Olsen Field. (Chris Swann/ The Battalion)
Down but not out
Neil Jhurani, Sports Writer • May 23, 2024

A warm, summer evening bestowed Hoover, Alabama on Wednesday night when the No. 4 Texas A&M Aggies faced the No. 15 Mississippi State Bulldogs...

Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Black Country, New Road returns from near break-up with a promising album

Photo courtesy of Paul Hudson

After losing their lead vocalist, Black Country, New Road’s future was questionable. But now, they’ve proved they have everything it takes to keep going.

Rating: 7/10

Despite a revolutionary debut single with a classic first album, and an equally acclaimed sophomore album, Black Country, New Road’s (BC,NR) future was uncertain, until now.

The British post-rock band had an explosive debut in 2019 when they released “Sunglasses,” a nearly nine-minute-long single and a testament of BC,NR’s unique talent. The song, partly due to its length but also its gradual progression and tonal shifts, plays out like an epic in rock form, similar to “The End” by The Doors. It also introduced an instrumentality that would become very characteristic of BC,NR; “Sunglasses” featured not only guitars and keyboards but saxophones, accordions and even some spoken word. 


2021 saw the release of their first full-length album, “For the First Time,” which captured the rock world’s attention due to its complete disregard for the genre standards that existed before it. “Ants From Up There,” their second album, provided a much more mature, refined and enjoyable presentation of BC,NR’s music, and was one of the top albums of 2022

But as their album successfully rolled out, Isaac Wood, the band’s iconic lead vocalist, announced his departure. 

Personally, I was expecting to never hear anything from BC,NR again, and was content to be satisfied with what they had already released. But on March 24, they proved me wrong as they released “Live at Bush Hall.”

This new release isn’t exactly a studio album of the same caliber as “Ants From Up There,” but “Live at Bush Hall” is no less interesting and colorful.

Containing nine songs recorded from a live show in London, the album serves as more of a state-of-things or check-in, rather than a real full-length release. Considering the previous uncertainty the band found itself to be in, “Live at Bush Hall” actually delivers much more than you would expect. 

Now lacking a lead vocalist, BC,NR takes advantage of its diverse cast of talents: vocal performances are substituted by other members like Tyler Hyde, May Kershaw and Lewis Evans. Although the album lacks any tonal unity, every song feels like an individual statement, equally artistic and worthwhile on its own. 

It is very difficult to put into words what their music sounds like. Everything seems so diverse and out of nowhere, yet it all fits perfectly. Each song is better described by moods, rather than technical sounds and styles.

“The Boy” has youthful joy and innocence. “Across the Pond Friend” is energetic and liberating. “Turbines/Pigs” hits you with a somber melancholy. Every song has its own character and its own story. 

Still, “Live at Bush Hall” does not feel like an end product, more so a rough draft of ideas and experiments. Fortunately, they all work extremely well. If BC,NR were able to fully develop all these individual musical acts into a unified, concise album, it would easily surpass their previous work. 

The most important takeaway of “Live at Bush Hall” is its statement on the band itself. Where once BC,NR existed in a questionable limbo, I could not be more excited and optimistic for their future.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *