The Rentiers - Black Metal Yoga [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Rentiers

Black Metal Yoga [7-inch] (2015)

Baldy Longhair Records

Just a few months after their debut, This is a List of Things That Exist, the Rentiers return with a new 7-inch, Black Metal Yoga. While plenty of what made Things work shows up here (Joel Tannenbaum and Anika Pyle’s harmonies, for one), there’s more genre exploration here. Given the members’ punk rock day jobs, Black Metal Yoga seems to set up Rentiers as an outlet for other musical styles.

“Black Metal Yoga” is a sci-fi epic about black metal and aliens and meditating and also it’s kind of kitschy. But like they sing in the song, “It doesn’t have to be real / It doesn’t have to be right / If black metal yoga helps you sleep through the night.” Musically it takes the Rentiers further down pop territory, ending up somewhere around the Rentals/that dog’s neighborhood. Mostly though it just reminds me that I’ve been a lot happier since I started listening to Tombs.

“Drunks and Stoners” is a reggae song about chemically altered people not getting along. It is perfectly calculated to appeal to drunks and/or stoners. Like “Black Metal Yoga” it’s a little tongue-in-cheek, but it’s also produced like a Jimmy Cliff record so it’s still a very well informed joke.

Also like the Rentals, the Rentiers all have other projects, so while the lineup is slightly different from earlier this year (ladies and gentleman, please welcome Floating Action’s Seth Kauffman), I can totally see this band as a bohemian roundabout of artists getting together to jam out songs about whatever tickles their fancy. That’s how Black Metal Yoga feels. Those feeling particularly demonic should search for the cassette edition, which boasts a bonus track and some satanic chanting.