Just before the end of the year we received on our review queue on of our favorite albums of 2018: Crippled Black Phoenix’s “Great Escape”. As one of the most melancholic and mellow Rock albums we have heard, this international band unleashes over one hour of truly disarming music. Mixing elements of bands like Anathema, God is an Astronaut and countless others, this is definitely one of the most unique and diverse releases you will hear in 2018.
After opening with the dreamy “You Brought it Upon Yourselves”, the band sinks into the bleakness of “To You I Give”, a Post-Rock-ish tune in nature. Masterminded by Justin Greaves, this band’s releases are always very rich and diverse and extremely hard to categorize, but always top notch in terms of quality. After the interlude “Uncivil War, Pt. 1”, “Madman” features a dark wave vibe with heavy synths and a very martial pace.
Arriving via Pellagic Records, today we have Sweden’s pg.lost and their latest opus “Versus”. Featuring seven track of intoxicating Instrumental Post-Rock, this release takes the listener into a sidereal journey thanks to the band’s ample musical creativity. Highly recommended for fans of bands like God is an Astronaut, EF and Tides from Nebula.
Opening with the mysterious “Ikaros”, the band starts their journey with a trippy and spacey vibe in this track. Brilliantly changing the tempo of the release, “Off the Beaten Path” picks up the pace and delivers a punchy bass guitar line that is nicely enveloped by catchy percussions and heavy atmospherics. The band does a great job in delivering tracks that slowly build up and peak nicely with crushing moments of heaviness like both “Monolith” and “Versus”.
Ever since catchy Tides From Nebula at the WGT in 2011 we have been amazed by their cinematic Post-Rock/Instrumental Rock music. In “Eternal Movement”, the band’s third album, they keep delivering lush atmospheric and emotional songs that transport the listener to beautifully crafted soundscapes fit for the soundtrack of an indie mute film. Greatly maturing since “Aura” and “Earthshine”, this is one release that elevates the band’s sound to new heights.
Opening with the emotive “Laughter of Gods”, the band’s lush layered guitars and atmospheric elements greatly set the tone for an excellent journey. Filled with amazing tempo and mood changes, tracks like “Only With Presence” and “Satori” elevate the listener’s spirit with a wide palette of aurally pleasing sounds. The band’s strength lies in being able to build up from dark and moody passages into full-on smile inducing happier moments, a perfect example of this is the rich “Emptiness of Yours and Me”.
From the highly creative mind of Nathanael, of Bonjour Tristesse and Agrypnie fame, today we have Thränenkind’s debut full-length “The Elk”. Being released through LifeForce Records, this powerful exercise in desolate and depressive music combines Post-Black Metal elements with Depressive Rock and a huge knack for bleak musical passages. With influences from bands like Heretoir and Austere (among others) to more Post-Rock outfits like God Is an Astronaut and Godspeed Your Black Emperor, this is one emotional rollercoaster ride that you do not want to miss.
Brilliantly setting the mood with the desolate “Monument”, we don’t have to wait much to get fully immerse in the band’s melancholic music. The first heavy hitting song is the ethereal “Just Another Way of Expressing Defeat”. Featuring dreamy guitars and a very mellow pace, this is one song that is very well constructed, transporting the listener back and forth from ethereal dream states.
Delivering over 50 minutes of stylish music, today we have John 3:16 and his latest release “Visions of The Hereafter – Visions of Heaven, Hell and Purgatory”. Competing for the longest album name ever, this one-man outfit that morphs between every release continues with his traditional cinematic approach to music delivering nine tracks of brilliant sound layers that evoke emotions and transport the listener to different realms.
Opening with the atmospheric “The Ninth Circle”, this album sets a very somber and martial mood very early. This track is quite enigmatic and keeps the listener on edge to what’s coming next. Immediately after, we have another momentum builder with some minor Drone influences that keeps the atmosphere evolving. “Throne of God / Angel of The Lord” also features some nice Post-Rock stokes that help paint this song.