Sep 8, 2012
Dance music is bigger than ever right now, with DJs gaining mainstream relevance and every pop star adding dance beats to their song, Davey and Jade are both well aware of this. So naturally, Blaqk Audio should be getting more popular along with the rest of the dance genre, right? Well, not exactly – the problem with Blaqk Audio is that they are hanging out in their own niche genre. In terms of mainstream appeal, Blaqk Audio will remain the same if they continue to make music the way they do now. I’m not saying their two albums are necessarily bad, but there’s so much untapped potential with the group, and I feel like they are stuck in a rut and don’t know how to approach modern dance music.
The main issue with Blaqk Audio is that Davey is trying to keep his frontman status that he holds with AFI; when really in electronic music, you should always let the producer be the lead guy. Jade needs to be the face of Blaqk Audio, not Davey. It’s so evident to me with tracks like “Everybody’s Friends” and “With Your Arms Around You” that Jade is really the star of the group, and in fact Davey’s vocals sometimes don’t even match the instrumental well at all. Davey almost even tries to outdo Jade in some songs, to the point your mind is just focused on his voice, and Jade’s work just gets drowned out. If people really don’t understand Jade’s potential yet, I invite them to please go listen to the CexCells instrumentals and his remixes on Soundcloud.
I don’t want to completely discredit their work, because if I was to say I don’t like how they do things now, I wouldn’t be a fan of them. They do know how to make it work, with songs like “Let’s Be Honest”, but those tracks are few and far in between. The solution is to make Davey’s voice just another one of Jade’s tools. There’s no need for Davey to try and write an AFI track with every song, but you can still be verbose while keeping it simpler. Davey and Jade need to sit in the same room together, and fully cooperate in making a track. I don’t want BA to sound like two separate parts (the vocal and instrumental) anymore. The music needs some cohesion.
The Ligature is a really interesting song to me, because it’s the only song where Jade has full control. I believe it’s just a remix of an unreleased song, but the point is that Jade just went crazy on Davey’s vocal track. The result is something really cool, and it’s the only BA song you can hear this in.
I got goosebumps when there was a stutter effect added to Davey’s voice in a verse of Everybody’s Friends, because vocal effects are something so underutilized with their music. I want a track with tons of vocal layers, and at times I don’t want to understand what Davey is saying at all. Jade should turn Davey’s voice into an instrument, get us hooked on the tune and not the words.
In closing, I really just want to see Blaqk Audio succeed. It’s upsetting to me that they aren’t as big as they deserve, and with the current explosion of Electronic music, there really is no reason they shouldn’t be. Part of the reason the cross over with AFI and Blaqk Audio fans is so huge is because honestly, the music is actually very similar. They use the same song structure, Jade uses the same synths in some AFI songs, and Davey is just as complex and poetic with Blaqk Audio lyrics as he is with AFI. I just want BA to evolve in the same way AFI does with every album.