Three years on from their “Blue Record” opus, Baroness have returned with a suitably oddball effort. The decision to make a double album is a rare and unexpected one first off, but to simultaneously shift your sound considerably is a very courageous move. Courageous, but perhaps not too surprising considering the band’s love for change and progression. Besides, when it sounds this great, it’s obviously the right decision.
“Yellow And Green” continues with the band’s infamous colour for an album theme, with the sides being split into “Yellow” and “Green” (obviously), both of which are linked together thematically with some differences in sound, but without lacking cohesion. The change from previous albums is quite staggering; the former elements of sludge are virtually stripped entirely (similarly to like Mastodon did) and instead “Yellow And Green” centres more towards sounds of Pink Floyd like psychedelia and prog rock, elements of blues and even parts that sound like AOR; and song structures are much simpler, but still very immersive.
There are a number of songs that fit into a straight forward, more radio friendly rock mould such as the likes of the simply huge sounding “Take My Bones Away”, whilst the likes of “Collapse” and “Twinkler” are much more mellow and (as the press release aptly describes) delicate; much more so than would be previously expected of them.
In fact the diversity on display here is immense, even with such simple song structures, each listen throws up another subtle aspect that may have been missed before. This is an album that requires your full attention to fully grasp and delve into, despite it not being a full overly progressive journey that perhaps one could expect.
With shorter, sharper rock ditties coupled with serene and more subtle numbers, “Yellow And Green” is a masterful work and a hugely rewarding listen if you give it the time and attention it requires. An album that gets better and better with every listen. Essential listening.