Monthly Recommendations: February 2017


‘The legendary rock in opposition band Thinking Plague has just released their eighth album, Hoping against Hope, after a crowdfunding campaign (I’m still waiting for my due! [Edit: Got it!]) I personally think this is their finest work to date, toppling In Extremis, which I thought was their best one, prior to this. If you’re unfamiliar with the band, be ready to be challenged. The band consists of six members who play instruments ranging from woodwinds to accordion in rhythmically and harmonically avant-garde compositions. It’s truly a treat, and I recommend that every one of you listens to it!’
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Mini-Reviews LXVI


Microtonal electropop artist Brendan Byrnes recently released Neutral Paradise, a fifty-minute collection of mostly-new tracks. Most of the twelve compositions on record use the 22-EDO system, used exclusively in Brendan’s band Ilevens. His knowledge of the system makes the songs sound natural and easily appreciable to even a neophyte audience. This is the future… Bar that. This is the present of music, and it’s awesome!
Belarusian experimental black metal band Leprous Vortex Sun put out По направлению к Солнцу, плавящему изнутри кости (Po napravleniyu k Solntsu, plavyashtshyemu iznutri kosti), in late December of last year. Hinging on heaviness, technicality, … Read more

Yowie – Synchromysticism

Yowie is one of those names that evoke wonderment, amazement, bewilderment. It all began with their 2004 debut, Cryptooology, which redefined the boundaries of the math rock genre. In truth, I believe they stand besides Hella for their contribution to the genre. Cryptooology and Hold Your Horse Is are kin, siblings of the same noospheric matrix, in my eyes. We had to wait eight years before Yowie were to release their sophomore, Damning with Faint Praise, which took the flame of its predecessor, and swallowed it.

Today, I’ll be writing my thoughts on the band’s third release, titled … Read more

Mini-Reviews LXV


Freedom, by Monas, is an experimental free jazz album from the New Yorker trio. With merely two tracks, the album culminates at almost forty minutes of musical extravaganza. In ‘Visible Spirit’, Colin Fisher leads with the guitar, and he switches to the saxophone for ‘Invisible Nature’. That gives us two complementary sides, each rife with improvisation and musical prowesses.
E Gone is an indie folk music project from Sweden, and The Third Is a Mountain Which Holds a Dagger even takes some singer-songwriter turns, but sticks for the most part with acoustic experimentation, delivered via multiple instruments. At … Read more

Mini-Reviews LXIV


This is not a Valentine’s day special.
Zeitgeber‘s upcoming album, Heteronomy, has just been announced, on Art as Catharsis’ bandcamp, but I’ve been able to listen to the whole thing and… It’s fascinating beyond words! The duo manages to create an entrancing and intellectual experience through a fusion of traditional and modern instruments, merging world music with psychedelic rock and electronica. It’s something I wholeheartedly recommend, if you’re even slightly piqued by ‘Phase Responsive Curve’, the available single. The album comes out on March fourteenth, and it is absolutely fantastic!
Québec’s symphonic folk death metal act Aeternam, … Read more

Mini-Reviews LXIII


British atmospheric progressive black metal trio Fen‘s fifth album, Winter, will be released on March tenth. The six parts, making up seventy-six minutes of runtime, can be thought of as one single and epic piece. Their compositions are varied and offer a real musical journey to experience. And, on top of that, the double LP and box set offer unique artworks that are totally amazing!
Benoît Lugué‘s Cycles is an outstanding experimental jazz album from the French bassist’s sextet. The thing crosses paths with the mathematically-inclined compositions and overall vibe of math rock, which is rather laid … Read more

Mini-Reviews LXII


It’s not the first time Brendon Coleman Quartet puts something out, but they might just have outdone themselves with Infinite Loop. The over fifty-minute album consists of a pretty standard quartet format with guitar and piano, but the compositions and improvisations they play are a perfect fit for it. That’s not surprising, but it still deserves recognition. Infinite Loop is just an awesome modern jazz album!
After many delays, the Greek-mythology-obsessed French band Promethean released Aloades, their debut EP, on February ninth. For once, the band describes themselves quite accurately with the term ‘symphonic blackened death metal’, although … Read more

Mini-Reviews LXI

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Faces Turn Away is the newest release of post-black metal one-man band Kassad. As you can hear with the featured track, ‘Madness’, this release packs quite a punch! Such acerbic sections are often interspersed with others that sometimes even recall post-rock with their delicateness. That makes for a pretty good, forty-six minutes album that keeps itself interesting.
Germany’s Pygmalion is a post-metal quartet, and they just released their debut album, titled Supersymmetry. Accompanying the beautiful and eye-crossing artwork is three quarters of an hour of ingenious instrumental post-metal. What I like about this band is that they go … Read more

Mini-Reviews LX

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100% chevalier is a French math rock trio with a strong emphasis on funk and the danceability of their music. Perhaps straightforward at first glance, EP-ÉE is actually filled with polymetres and groove. Despite being released in 2015, the EP feels fresh in today’s math rock scene, and we’re looking forward to the band’s next endeavour.
Modulate is Escher‘s last take on progressive metalcore. The album is rather interesting with its dissonances, its songs’ structures, and its incorporation of jazz. It’s hard to say how much jazz influenced the heavier parts, but the songs often present a softer, jazzier … Read more

Mini-Reviews LIX

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Today, Bandcamp is donating all its profits to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and artists are joining the movement as well. Heavy Blog Is Heavy even put up a list of the best albums to buy, today. In conjunction, here’s nine more fresh and praiseworthy releases from our point of view!
Lukas Mantel is a Swiss drummer and percussionist, and he released Kolam korvai this week. A korvai is a percussions-only, mathematically interesting composition from South India. The EP thus comprises eighteen short tracks that are musically and technically impressive yet flow naturally – as a … Read more