Purity Ring — Womb: Review
Purity Ring has always been a group that never reached the levels of complexity that they are capable of reaching and it has set them back since their debut Shrines.
Their first album Shrine was a signature x on the timeline for the predominant sound of the 2010s. That sound being indie-pop rock — mixed with electronic music influence. It was one of many, like Gossamer by Passion Pit or Born This Way by Lady Gaga to further pave way for new artists emerging in the second half of the decade. Unlike them, Purity Ring aren’t as commercially out there, albeit having off color features along the way, like “25 Bucks,” with Danny Brown, they never threshed past the next wall.
Their subsequent album, Another Eternity, had inconsistencies in the midst of an interesting direction. But their newest album, Womb, takes its to another level, further exploring more of the witch-house / glitch-house music that they intertwine with pop.
Unlike many of the subsequent albums from these artists, Purity Rings’ consistency is one of the better parts of their artistry. They may not always deliver promising and well-rounded projects, but they retain enough intrigue to last all 35 minutes.
Like Another Eternity it becomes forgettable mid way and some of the more interesting sounds become muddled with the ideas placed into each. Broken into thirds the album has an excellent beginning and end. There are times you realize you’re on the last set of tracks without realizing you skipped 3–4 some songs midway. On Womb its far less tracks that are overall mediocre and more tracks with replay value, in the vaguest of sense.
There are a great collection of tracks on Womb. The sounds are more properly aligned and fluid, without any roughness on the edges. It is very introspective lyrically and sonically since their focus has been more on ambiance than universal appeal.
“Peacefall,” eloquently mixes pop-like vocals with witch-house / glitch-house influenced instrumentals. A catchy pre-chorus and chorus embody the first half of the track, eventually turning into ambient synths and more glitches in the matrix. It is a deep rooted song about missing the little things that could have brought about different views on someone, positively and with slight regrets.
“I like the devil,” does so similarly, before it weaves into the middle three tracks that are otherwise good albeit lost in the mass.
“Sinew,” and “Vehemence,” being the most forgettable of the three, the former only comes back around upon more listens and it is the most inspired, but still problematically forgettable upon a full front to back listen.
It ends on a high note, with “almanac” and “stardew,” two beautiful contrasting styles that transition into each other with ease.
The sounds Purity Ring explores into the tracks on this album are inspired, while still maintaining the ambient and atmosphere of their type of electronic-house-pop music.