Just like the title suggests, Spotlights‘ sophomore full-length is truly a seismic affair.
The sheer sonic weight and expressiveness of post-metal meld effortlessly with wavering, textural atmospheres à la shoegaze and 90s alternative drive throughout Spotlights‘ endlessly pummeling tunes. The towering, heavy sludge instrumentation, combined with ethereal vocals and kaleidoscopic soundscapes, creates a surprisingly effective dichotomy. Many similar acts tend to get wrapped up in their adoration for bands like Hum, Failure or Swervedriver to the point of complete mimicry. Spotlights, on the other hand, blend these influences damn near perfectly into a unique sound that is all their own.
CLOAKROOM have become the godfathers of their hybrid of emo stoner doom over the span of their 5-year career. Exceptional songwriting chops, time spent in cultishly followed bands, and a vocalist with a lilting tenor have all expedited this ascension. On their 2nd full-length Time Well they seem to manage to best their previous releases and also lay claim to a spot alongside contemporary greats.
Brooklyn instrumentalists Sannhet deliver a melancholic and cathartic opus with their third full-length recording, So Numb.
In 2013, the trio turned heads with the release of their brooding debut, Known Flood. It’s blending of trudging post-metal, blistering black metal and introspective post-rock was met with critical acclaim and would serve as the basis for the group’s future releases. 2015’s lauded Revisionist stayed trued to the band’s post-black metal roots, but incorporated more emotive melody and tinkered with shoegaze-esque textures. With So Numb, the band leap even further into the shoegaze realm, resulting in a dynamic tour de force that is as somber as it is euphoric.
So much has happened in the bubble world of guitar rock over the last 17 years. Coincidentally, this happens to be the amount of time that has passed since Oxford, England, 4 piece Ride released their last album. That album, Tarantula, bore many of the hallmarks of a rapidly sinking ship: lyrical arrows aimed at band mates, further stylistic alienation, and the real kick in the shins – having the album deleted by the label that released it, one week after the initial release. It seems that time has been kind to that particular record and to the band’s discography in general. Thankfully for fans of the band co vocalist/ guitarist Andy Bell has a serious inclination for writing elite songs whether it be in projects Hurricane #1, Beady Eye, Oasis, or Ride.
Photo by Colin May
Indiana’s Cloakroom have announced the release of their sophomore full-length album. The new effort, which follows 2015’s Further Out, will be titled Time Well and will be released through Relapse Records on August 18. The album’s artwork and track listing can be found after the break, along with the official video for their new track “Seedless Star”.
Pre-orders for the record can be found here.
I am a firm believer in the fact that the seasons influence my listening, and from what I can gather, the listening habits of others as well. Below The House, while an absolutely awesome record, also had the good fortune of reaching my ears on a day where it’s melancholy, delay washed warmth, fit the grey skies and slowly melting snow of my surroundings.
Alcest is often seen as at the forefront of the stupidly, but aptly named, “black gaze” movement. While many bands have attempted to combine the delay drenched spaciness of shoegaze with the raw, visceral sound of black metal, few have been at it longer or more effectively. Alcest took it a bit further on their last release, Shelter. Many people wrote Shelter off as a boring, conventional shoegaze album only worthy of note because it was a stylistic shift by a band who had received a bunch of praise for their pioneering, unique sound. I use the phrase unique because when Alcest first came to be, there were few, if any similar bands. On Kodama, Alcest has taken a step back, but in all of the right ways.
Post-metal/shoegaze duo Spotlights have premiered their forthcoming album, Tidals, over at CVLT Nation. The record will officially be released this Friday, May 13, via Crowquill Records. Pre-order here. Picture Oceanic/Panopticon-era Isis mixed with Hum and you get basic idea of what Tidals has to offer. The record is huge and filled to the brim with lush soundscapes that are draped over mammoth guitar-driven marches. Check out the record in full now.
Husband and wife post-metal duo Spotlights have premiered a new track from their upcoming album, Tidals, at Decibel. The new track is titled “Hover” and it is infectiously heavy. Grumbling bass lines and pummeling percussion lay the groundwork for the track as hypnotic vocals and a myriad of sliding, wavering psychedelic guitar leads bring color to the doomed tune. The song becomes slower and more sludge based as it progresses, subjecting the listener to towering, claustrophobic riffs. Stream the track over at Decibel now.
Tidals will be released on May 13 via Crowquil Records. Pre-order here.
Post-metal/shoegaze hybrids Spotlights have premiered a new track from their upcoming album, Tidals, over at Revolver. Titled “The Grower”, the track features behemoth-sized down-tuned guitar and bass riffs that march along menacingly as layers of atmosphere and effects swirl about overhead. Check out the melodic yet crushing tune here.
Tidals will be released on May 13 via Crowquill Records. Pre-order here.