Album Review: Spectral Lore — “11 Days”

After an extremely fruitful 2022, with five albums under five different projects, RABM’s most prolific musician Ayloss has returned to his paramount project. 11 Days is Spectral Lore’s first release in almost two years; a four-song, 44-minute EP alternating between metal and ambient tracks depicting the harrowing journey of refugees across the Mediterranean, a trek which has claimed over 25,000 lives since 2014. With powerful music as heavy as the subject material (and lyrical themes to match), Ayloss has crafted a scathing indictment of the EU’s immigration policies alongside what is some of the strongest material under the Spectral Lore moniker so far.

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Album Review: Primitive Man and Full of Hell — “Suffocating Hallucination”

Full of Hell Primitive Man - Suffocating Hallucination

Suffocating Hallucination truly is an album that answers the question of “what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object”.  If you know, you know: Primitive Man are the undisputed champions of doom and the heaviest fucking band on the planet, with Full of Hell taking a close second, albeit for different reasons.  In one corner, we have lumbering, plodding, black-hole-dense doom and on the other we have savage, razor-sharp and breakneck grindcore.  “But Ian”, you say, “when we mix them together, shouldn’t we just get songs that are, you know, a normal tempo?”  You absolute fool.  You’re not ready for what’s about to hit you.

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Album Review: BIG|BRAVE — “nature morte”

Big Brave - nature morte

It should be no secret here that we have all been eagerly awaiting nature morteBIG|BRAVE is a band that fits into the nebulous space between metal and experimental, between crushingly heavy and ethereally light in a way that few of their peers manage to navigate successfully.  There seems to be no stopping their wild and creative tear they’ve been on, especially 2021’s double whammy of Vital and their collaboration with fellow game-changers The Body, it’s been a long time coming for their follow-up, but a lot has also happened, personally and globally, that has shaped nature morte into being.

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Album Review: Kurushimi — “Return III: Death”

Kurishimi - Return III Death

Return III: Death is the third part in the Return series from Australian noise masters Kurushimi. Each prior entry in the series saw the band revisit a song from their self titled debut. Return III is no different. Here, the band revisits the track “Shinigami.” The result is a transformative work not just for the song but the band as well.

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Rainbows in the Dark: Kathryn Mohr — “Holly”

I stake much of my reputation on being someone who adores lo-fi indie music, in case you hadn’t picked up on the number of times I mention The Mountain Goats on a podcast dedicated to music that is decidedly unlike The Mountain Goats. I am a person who loves simple, uncomplicated music that packs a lot of heart, and there is something about the sound of fuzzy, blown out instruments that works with my ears and brain very nicely. It is through this lens that I come to Holly, the new EP by San Jose based experimental artist Kathryn Mohr, which presents a kaleidoscope view of the world through synthesizer, guitar, and vocals.

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