Dreare is an instrumental post-metal band from the Czech Republic, whom I was introduced to last year when Dave covered them in a One Sentence Review. Being a fan of instrumental metal I decided to check them out, and i’m glad I did!
The trio’s debut album, Blank and Forward, is full of subtleties and nuances. Reverb and feedback are used heavily, making the music sound raw and natural. The lack of complexity in the music also helps accentuate this, as you’re paying just as much attention to the space in between notes, as you are the notes themselves.
The first track ‘Fibre’ starts off with some droning bass with some reverberating background ambient guitar. Once the song starts to pick up, the guitar grows heavier and the drumming more erratic. More riffs are introduced until everything but the bass is stripped away again. The ebb and flow of this song almost puts you in a trance as you lose yourself in it. The ending is a bit more melodic as the bright guitar complements the dreary bass.
The next track ‘Liquid’ starts out with some tribal sounding drumming. The guitar and bass contrast the more upbeat drums with their dark and reverberating tones. This is the shortest and most concise song on the album.
‘Never Ceasing’, the longest track on the album, starts off very slow and ambient with soft percussion spaced very far apart along with some subtle guitar and bass. The song does pick up though, and the guitar grows heavier around the 8:30 mark. The guitar tone is very rich and expansive.
‘Botu’ is a bit more upbeat than the previous songs, starting with a high pitched guitar riff. The bass is a bit brighter as well. The band then changes things up, going in a more progressive direction. Some more complex bass lines and screeching guitar really makes this track stand out. The riff at the end gets really intense until a single reverberating drum crash leads us into ‘Sad Giant’.
With only that same reverberating drum hit repeating a few times after about 15 seconds of silence, ‘Sad Giant’ starts off very quiet. Since it’s the only thing you hear for the first minute of the song, you can really hear the reverb with every hit, and can actually pick out the subtle differences each time. This song features some guitar tapping, and the tone sounds crunchier as well. The hard hitting bass really packs a punch, and plays off the guitar riffs. The album ends with some feedback from the guitar as the final notes are held as long as possible.
The band has the album up for free on bandcamp but are also selling a self-released 12” 2LP Vinyl version of it, of which I got the pleasure of receiving one of the first copies, courtesy of the band. The packaging of the vinyl is very nice, as the high quality artwork wraps from front to back of the gatefold. The artist and album name are notably absent from the outside cover and spine and are only found on side D of the record (along with the track names and band lineup) which does not contain any music, as only sides A, B, and C were needed. This fits with the simplistic nature of the music. The vinyl itself sounds great as the nuances of the instruments stand out even more.
Overall, Blank and Forward is a solid album that is very ambient and expressive, but not completely absent of structure or melody. You can lose yourself in the instruments if you just sit down with it, lean back, close your eyes, and let it take you away. If you’ll allow it that is. You have to be in the right mindset to fully enjoy it, but if you can, I’d recommend it.
A vinyl copy of the album was provided by the band.
1. Fibre – 07:20
2. Liquid – 03:50
3. Never Ceasing – 12:50
4. Botu – 07:07
5. Sad Gigant – 10:48
Total running time: 41:57
Filetype listened to: Vinyl/MP3
Bitrate: 320 kbps CBR
Sampling frequency: 44,100 Hz, 2 channels