The Ghost Cult album round-up is back in town for your vulgar delectation, with our penultimate selection of 2017 taking you down amongst the silt, with a selection of Sludge, Doom and post-Metal antidotes to any festive cheeriness that may be unsettling your disgusted souls… Continue reading
It’s always hard to review bands that never quite fit comfortably into pigeonholes. Canada’s BIG | BRAVE isn’t quite just drone, but that wide murky area we lump together as ‘experimental’. Continue reading
Now into their fourth decade of making emotional,spiritual and simply brilliant noise, Neurosis continue to prove (not that we really doubted them) to be in exceptionally rude health. Fires Within Fires (Neurot Recordings) arrives fully formed and brilliantly realised. This is Neurosis’s eleventh album and although it’s early days, it stands easy comparison with their very best. Continue reading
Just like Wino, or fellow bandmate Scott Kelly, when taking time off from his day job, Neurosis vocalist/guitarist Steve Von Til likes to stray from metal and dabble in acoustic albums. A Life Unto Itself is Til’s fourth under his own name, following on from 2008’s A Grave is a Grim Horse [both Neurot Recordings]
Much like his previous solo outings, it’s an acoustic album of dark Americana; sometimes folky, sometimes straying into more country territory, but always fuelled by a slow burning melancholy. Accompanying Til’s gravelly baritone are slide and steel guitars, fiddles, piano, plus occasional synths, and the variety of styles and sounds on offer ensure that while the mood rarely lifts it remains a compelling listen throughout.
Whether it’s the haunting seven minutes of the title track, the eerie ‘Night of the Moon’ or the introspective ‘Birch Bark Box’, every track boats layers of subtlety, texture and emotion. Til’s poetic introspection moulds the best of latter day Johnny Cash and Nick Cave and feels very personal, and suit the leaden pace yet sombre atmosphere that Til’s music creates.
While musically Til’s solo material is worlds away from his work with Neurosis, it retains that same crushing feeling of oppression. A Life Unto Itself is a hard, tiring listen and not one for those wanting an acoustic experience to relax to [Wino’s outings with Conny Ochs are far more uplifting in comparison], but it’s a rewarding listen for those willing to revel in the misery.