BIG|BRAVE, the elemental ensemble of guitarist/vocalist Robin Wattie, guitarist Mathieu Ball, and drummer Tasy Hudson, harness an earthen heaviness composed of distorted and textural drones, austere bombast, and Wattie’s heart-rending voice. Like recent collaborators The Body, BIG|BRAVE is at the forefront of reconfiguring the landscape of heavy music. The trio brandish sparseness and density like weapons, cast tense atmospheres with languid tempos and mutate feedback into eruptions of enveloping tempests. nature morte sharpens BIG|BRAVE’s ferocity and expansive sound into emotional elegies for the disenfranchised, wringing abstracted textures and pure fervence into songs of unfathomable mass.
Listen to the first track, “carvers, farriers and knaves.”
The title nature morte is the French term for still life paintings whose literal translation is “dead nature”. BIG|BRAVE colour the songs of nature morte with unease, creating an air of beauty in decay, chords suspended in contemplative stillness. Wattie’s experiences structuring lyrics and song forms on The Body & BIG|BRAVE’s Leaving None But Small Birds informed her work on nature morte, creating stories that, like many folk tales, are at once specific and universal. Wattie’s voice manages to be commanding and vulnerable with impressive range and intimacy. Even her gasps carve their way through the tidal crash of Ball’s distortion wail and the pummel of Hudson’s drums. “the fable of subjugation” conveys pain through strained drones free of time, an aching minimalism that withers slowly before bursting in an outright roar. nature morte is an excavation of dark inner chasms of feelings both ineffable and visceral. The album tackles the folly of hope, the consequences of trauma, often centres on the subjugation of femininity in all its pluralities. “It is violent and terrible. It is crushing and alarming. It is common and basic,” says Wattie. “It is catastrophic and disheartening.”