A Blanket Over Your Eyes

by Cat On Form

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about

6 tracks + final last show,43 mins. Now sadly defunct, this is the Cats' parting gift to the wired & insurgent. Recorded in Philadelphia, these songs encapsulate their detonation sound.


Sometimes it takes a death for people to open their eyes. To look beyond the comfortable lies into stark reality. Cat On Form's final album Blanket Over Your Eyes is a wrenching insight into the death of a band, and beyond that, the death of an ideal. When Cat On Form imploded after an arduous tour of the US, a lot of people blinked. This record is what we're left with. Cat On Form's nihilistic swansong - not a false memorial, not a farewell vanity record nor a last ditch cash-in, but a blueprint of bile, a list of instructions for the disillusioned.

Cat On Form got together in Brighton, late 2001, and quickly became a powerful live force, making a distinct impression on their audience with their fierce and intelligent post-hardcore and passion by the arm load. Typically Dan's screaming and Steve's hollering provided the band's outlet for catharsis, while their guitars grinded explosively, drums and bass underpinning such extremity. The group's energetic performance style was matched by a handful of insistent singles and a full length release, Structure & Fear (Southern) described by Kerrang! as an album of "blood-splattered and eerie guitar stabs, deep-dirge sonics and ripped-larynx vocals which add up to something very disquieting, and deeply brilliant".

This final record is a far more introspective effort than previous releases, the paradigm shifting from the political to the personal, however entwined both may be. Their world-weary detonation sound feeding off the rage they once directed at the outside world, now turning within. Yet this record comes as some surprise when one considers it was largely written in an idyllic log cabin on a lake outside Washington DC. Recorded in Philadelphia by friend Steve Roche (Off Minor) after their US tour last April, the album is made up of first takes with no overdubs- a rawness complementing the frustration they felt towards being engulfed by the USA, swallowed by a lie, staring into stark reality. The songs representing their disaffection at conceding that everywhere proved just as hostile as they hoped it wasn't.

Musically, Blanket Over Your Eyes is a darker and more apocalyptic recording, more reflective of their intense live performances. ‘More Escapism' is an insurgent shard of riot-core, exploring the way individuals are stifled by social convention and the media's persistent mantra of goodwill. While ‘Sad For Sale' is an anti-emo anthem, criticising the way depression is co-opted by the youth industry. However, the bleak nature of these songs is tempered by the inclusion of four bonus live tracks, taken from their emotional last gig, a defiant reminder that hope is the last thing you should give up.

This record provides a powerful testimony of a band in the process of self destruction. Yet this is not to say that it provides an unremitting ly bleak experience for the listener. Indeed the final song offers up many a glimmer of hope. For instance it is no coincidence that the final lyrics declare from the rooftops that "We are not powerless!, passing the baton onwards, a call to arms shot across barricade of inert existence. This is an end for Cat On Form, but not the end by no means.

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released June 1, 2004

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Southern Records London, UK

Fiercely independent since forever, Southern Records has a musical pedigree which stretches way back to 1977, when a band called Crass was founded (and proceeded to change punk & the world forever...but that's another story). For years Southern operated as a recording studio & the biz wheels behind labels like Crass, Corpus Christi, Bluurg & Dischord, before launching an eponymous imprint in 1991 ... more

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