Matt Skiba and the Sekrets: Babylon

2012
Matt Skiba and the Sekrets is a side project headed by Matt Skiba of Alkaline Trio and now Blink-182. This album is similar in ways to what Skiba had done in the past with Alkaline Trio but I think it allows him to express himself a little more and explore some deeper, more personal themes. With Alkaline Trio all three members contribute to the writing process and for the Sekrets, Skiba can do a little more exploration without the backlash of a fan-base thinking the band is going in an unwanted direction.
The first track on the album, “Voices” is one of my personal favorites that demonstrates right from the start, the darker nature and themes that Skiba likes to dive into. The track is filled with paranoia, and almost schizophrenic feeling themes as it sings of some sort of demonic or evil presence looming in a way this is poetic and eerie. The hook of the song, “All alone with the voices in your head, skin and bones hell knows all the poison that you’ve been fed. All alone with the voices in your head, in the dark as you walk hand in hand with the living dead.” demonstrates this eeriness that I mentioned.
“All Fall Down” is a somewhat lighter track that looks into a world of confusion and uncertainty. It’s a very catchy, somewhat upbeat track that adds to the albums pace.  “Luciferian Blues” dives into Skiba’s worldviews and sings of inevitable death that we must all face. This is another beautifully written, poetic track. This song is all about keeping your dignity and how it is fine to have doubts because the truth is, nobody truly knows what happens at the end of the road we call life. “Haven’t You” dives into love and how it transcends death. It’s a deeply emotional track about losing someone and coming to find that they are always with you despite not being physically present.
The rest of the songs on the album have good depth and emotion that make them special. The final track on the album, “Angel of Deaf” sounds like a cry from someone being looked down on. The repeated hook “I can’t hear a goddam thing above all of the screaming” shows this songs lyrical simplicity along with it’s emotional depth. Overall, this album is really good because of it’s emotional depth and brutal honesty. I feel like Matt Skiba really opens up with this project more than he can with his other bands. Those bands demonstrate his sheer talent and ability while what he does with the Sekrets is a little deeper and personal. If your a fan of AK3 then you will most likely love this work and even if you aren’t a fan of his other bands I would give it a listen because it is unique, deep, and you just might make a connection.
Grade: 8.65 (B)
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