Esses – Bloodletting For The Lonely

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Bloodletting For The Lonely - Bat-Cave Productions / Atakra Records

Esses have been a feature of the West Coast underground for the past seven years, something that makes perfect sense when you realise that the band’s pedigree includes former members of outfits such as Altar de Fey, Black Ice, The Phantom Limbs, Red Voice Choir and The Holy Kiss. Their striking combination of intense post punk and dark death rock is now combined on the Oakland, CA quintet’s sophomore album, Bloodletting For The Lonely, that is out now on digital, vinyl, and CD formats via Atakra Records and Bat-Cave Productions

ESSES established their intimate and intense sound with their 2018 debut EP, Offering. Like it’s predecessor, and their 2016 debut full length No Light In This Fire, their sophomore album doesn’t pull it’s punches. It addresses subjects that need to be spoken openly about in a precisely aligned album that is not designed to live in perpetual shuffle, this is a full length that is designed to be played in order in one sitting. The nine tracks contained on Bloodletting For The Lonely are quite literally straight outta the bat cave, this is not just a pun on the name of their European home. The roots of Esses lie deep in the gothic and post punk scenes of the eighties, something that means that the likes of Skeletal Family, Xmal Deutschland and The Sisters of Mercy can be heard deep in the grooves of Bloodletting For The Lonely.

Bloodletting For The Lonely is not an easy listen, this is a dark and claustrophobic album that is centred around topics such as mental health, memory and trauma. As a result this is a complex, dark and compelling album that tells a story across it’s half hour run time. This is a dark, gloomy and at times otherworldly album, but rather than getting lost in a self indulgent cloud of dry ice, Bloodletting For The Lonely is driven by punk energy and post punk unpredictably that raises Esses above their contemporaries. At times bone rattling, at others bewitching, but always evocative and full of dark enchantment.

Bloodletting for the Lonely can be is now available via Bandcamp & Bat-Cave Productions.