• Darkest Wave Magazine

REVIEW: Black Rose Burning - 'The Wheel'


Black Rose Burning is a New York-based musical project created by instrumentalist, producer, and engineer George Grant. Its first published album, “The Year of Scorpion”, presents the root sounds of the project. Shortly after, a club mix of the song “Outgunned” was released, as a sort of b-side. Similarly, acoustic versions of the album and two unreleased tracks were presented under the name “Open The Gate”. Since then they have covered popular songs by The Fixx and Tears for Fears, revealing the musical influences of the project.

A second full-length album, “The Wheel,” was published in December of 2021. This sharper and harsher atmospheric sound is an ode to the weirdness of the unknown people that hide in the darkness of vaults and burial caves. It’s a conceptual discovery. A whole different angle from previous releases. Heavy drums and a thick and frightening synth produce feelings of terror and a sense of melancholic desolation.

The work has a dejected, painful sound beneath the obscure ambiance. Mixing severe darkwave vocals, with higher coldwave voice influences creates an off-balance mismatch. Some songs are inexplicably sorrowful, while others are cold, deep, and unemotional. The chasm between black and icy environments seems to be the axis of the album.

In their song “Black Sun Saturday” the collection presents both atmospheres. A synth-pop composition merged with an evident post-punk influence. Despite the optimistic melody, the bass line and the vocals have are undeniably morose with lyrics suggesting an unenviable pain.

Black Rose Burning offers a mixture of genres. With a firm anchored in pop harmonies, the sound of this project presents a sort of celestial darkness. Perky new wave beats atop a horrifying gaze that takes us on a trip into imaginary graveyards. - Marcos Gonzalez Cutre


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