The Watch – The Art Of Bleeding (DeLuxe Edition)

Posted: 230921

Review Erik Neuteboom

I remember vividly that I wrote for Dutch progrock magazine iO Pages when I received The Watch their first album, as a CD-R, in 2001. Anno 2021 I received the new The Watch album as a digital download,  “The times they are a-chanching” to quote Bob Dylan. About The Art Of Bleeding the band wrote: “After a huge and three years long composing process, for the first time The Watch has ventured into the world of the concept album with five stories that revolve around the idea of cathartic violence. A musical theme developed in various ways to create different atmospheres. A disc to immerse yourself in and let yourself go.”

On this new album The Watch presents 8 melodic, harmonic and varied tracks, featuring a wonderful colouring with guitar and keyboards and, last but not least, Simone his passionate vocals with that distinctive Peter Gabriel timbre. The Watch succeeds to blend the unsurpassed 70-77 Genesis sound with some fine own musical ideas, and to keep my attention during the entire album.

Like in the captivating song Red: the freaky synthesizer sound, slightly distorted vocals, powerful Hammond runs and a scary scream halfway create an ominous climate, the final part contains bombastic keyboards and a dynamic rhythm-section. In the dark Hatred Of Wisdom the blend of a raw and propulsive guitar riff and soaring Mellotron violins delivers a compelling musical contrast. And the final track Red Is Deep starts mellow with dreamy keyboards and vocals, then a catchy beat with rock guitar (Peter Gabriel solo evokes), halfway a break with helicopter sound, followed by an eruption with a mid-tempo and pleasant vocals, gradually joined by bombastic keyboards.

More obvious 70-77 Genesis inspired compositions are the dynamic Abendlicht (lush keyboards and a fiery guitar solo), The Fisherman (12-string acoustic guitars and intense Hackett-like volume pedal guitar play), Howl The Stars Down (swelling Hammond sound, beautiful classical guitar, melancholical vocals, and in the end a churchy Hammond) and Black Is Deep (moving guitar work, majestic Mellotron violins, and the distinctive ARP Pro Solist synthesizer sound, this is by far the most Genesis sounding track).

The ‘Deluxe Edition’ contains a Special Edition CD with 7 songs from the The Watch discography, in different versions, chosen by The Watch themselves (A.T.L.A.S, Goddes, Something Wrong, The Border, Sound Of Sirens / Another Life, Scene Of The Crime and Tourist Trap).