The Mercury Tree – Permutations

The Mercury Tree is one of the rare bands that has managed to constantly grow and improve with every record they put out. On their fifth record, Permutations, they are barely recognizable as the same band that created their radio-friendly alt-rock debut nearly a decade earlier. Permutations is an extremely dense and challenging listen that demands and rewards multiple listens; it is one of the rare records which combines technicality and innovation with a strong emotional core.

Bandleader Ben Spees has been the only constant throughout the band’s discography, and he manages to be the lead vocalist, guitarist and … Read more

Review: Sevish – Rhythm And Xen

Sevish has been known in the microtonal music circles for some time now, mostly due to his 2010 effort “Golden Hour”. 2015 marks the return of the man, with Rhythm And Xen, a xenharmonic effort leaning heavily on drum & bass and electronic music, as well as breakbeat and ambient music. For the uninitiated, xenharmonic is “music that does not sound like 12-tone equal temperament”, according to Ivor Darreg, who coined the term.

Therefore, the music in there might be quite hard to grasp for somebody who’s only heard 12-tone equal temperament (12-TET) all their life, taking up practically … Read more

Cryptic Ruse – Chains Of Smoke

Microtonal music artist Jason Yerger’s project Cryptic Ruse (formerly City of the Asleep) – now with actual microtonal guitars! – returns to show us his new and masterfully crafted work: Chains of Smoke.

Using three different exotic tuning systems – 13 EDO, 15 EDO, and 23 EDO (EDO stands for Equal Divisions of the Octave) – and a wide palette of musical genres, Jason makes us travel to never-before heard sonic landscapes. By using “oriental” and “middle-oriental”-sounding tunings with a more standard (for us, westerners!) metal band quatuor instrumentation, with due distortion, riffs, … Read more