ALL SENSES & WAKE BREWING PRESENTS: SPIRIT ADRIFT/MORPHINE DREAM/ARTORIAS
While Spirit Adrift made many take notice with their debut album “Chained To Oblivion”, it is on “Curse Of Conception” their stellar second album, and first with new label 20 Buck Spin, that the band has taken a giant leap forward in songwriting prowess, production and confidence. From the Metallica / Priest like opening moments of ‘Earthbound’ to the epic closing of “Onward, Inward”, Spirit Adrift are aiming sky high with burning focus and peak vigor.
The aforementioned ‘Earthbound’ is a standard bearer for album-opening songcraft, leading into the colossal title track, a grungy and twisting radio-ready crawler. ‘To Fly On Broken Wings’ & ‘Graveside Invocation’ continue to show that any of the eight tracks on ‘Curse Of Conception’ could stand as featured singles. Throughout the duration brick heavy riff assembly, somber southern atmospherics and grand melodies entwine flawlessly into perfect metallic majesty, exemplified succinctly and totally in the instrumental ‘Wakien’ for example.
With a host of fantastic albums released by their contemporaries lately, Spirit Adrift has taken their craft to an ascendent new level on ‘Curse Of Conception’ earning their rightful place among the top tier of modern metal bands clawing their way above and beyond the underground scene.
ALL SENSES & WAKE BREWING PRESENTS: SUMAC/INFERNAL COIL/JON MUELLER
Love is what makes us human. It guides our decisions, shapes our worldview, and defines our experiences. Its absence equates to tragedy while its presence gives our lives meaning. “Love has been well worn theme throughout a lot of rock music, but most commonly in terms of love-lost, overly romanticized versions of new love, or as a veil for sexual conquest,” says SUMAC guitarist and vocalist Aaron Turner (Old Man Gloom, Mamiffer, ISIS). “It is rarely addressed in its more spiritual and vulnerable aspects.” Those less-traversed territories of humankind’s connective bond became the central theme SUMAC’s third full-length album, Love In Shadow, though their explorations of that motif are a far cry from traditional manifestations of love in the realm of art. Across four protracted songs, Turner and his cohorts—Nick Yacyshyn (Baptists,Erosion) on drums and Brian Cook (Russian Circles) on bass—interlace and mangle sounds from their instruments in a sonic homage to both the innate warmth of human magnetism and the cold realities of corrupted love—jealousy, obsession, perversion, addiction.
Listeners who followed the Northwest trio down the tangled briar of mathematical riffs and hypnotic battery on The Deal or through the unfettered eruptions and methodical dissonance of What One Becomes are aware that SUMAC eschews the conventional balladry typically associated with odes to our spiritual connectedness. Saccharine sweetness or fatalistic tales of unrequited affection are nowhere to be found on Love In Shadow. Over the album’s hour-plus length, the band employs minimal tools to achieve a maximum overview of visceral passions. Yet while popular music puts an emphasis on conveying moods through well-tread tropes, cultural signifiers, and deeply ingrained associations between tempo, texture, melody and their respective emotional resonance, SUMAC approach their music with the tactile immediacy of abstract expressionists. The beauty is not in the content, but in the form.
Love In Shadow comes crashing out of the gate with “The Task.” SUMAC wastes no time churning out the meticulous bombardment of knotty riffage and dexterous drumming that drew cerebral metalheads to their early records, but at the moment when most bands would wrap up their song, the band pushes forward and the razor sharp delivery and dense polyrhythmic weave of instrumentation begins to crumble. Turner’s signature bellow escalates into a primal howl. Everything falls apart, and suddenly we’re left alone with a warped melody played on a broken guitar. The band locks back into a lurching, megalith groove, and then retreats into a tense, minimalist palm-muted rhythmic pattern while a fragmented stream-of-conscious guitar line slithers across the open space. The entire song, and indeed the entire record, grapples with a duality of intricately composed arrangements juxtaposed against unbridled improvisations.
The freeform abstractions of Love In Shadow were hinted at on early songs like “Hollow King” and “Image of Control”, but SUMAC’s recent collaborations with esteemed Japanese artist Keiji Haino pushed the band completely into the realm of spontaneous composition. “Incorporating a lot of free and open space within the borders of our songs has been an ongoing goal for us,” Turner says. “While all of this material was written before our recording session with Haino, that experience further bolstered our confidence to travel further into territories free of preconceived structure and melody. Immediacy, intuition, and risk have become an increasingly important aspect of our music making.” Whether it’s the protracted guitar solos underpinned by a malleable rhythm section on “Attis’ Blade”, the woozy drones of bending guitar strings and feedback on “Arcing Silver”, or the intermissions of distorted amplifier groans and Eastern guitar trills on “Ecstasy of Unbecoming”, these adventurous sojourns add a new dimension to SUMAC’s ongoing explorations of dynamics. The polarized approaches of calculated composition and untethered expression now reside with fluctuations between space and density, complexity and brute force, and shrill noise and rumbling thunder in the trio’s arsenal of contrasts. Kurt Ballourecorded the album live with the goal of minimal overdubs or fixes over five days at Robert Lang Studios in Shoreline, WA. The result is an album that sounds more alive and human than the common computer grid-built mechanically perfect metal record.
ALL SENSES & WAKE BREWING PRESENTS: CHROME/HIDE
We are BEYOND excited to announce that we will sponsoring legendary San Francisco synth punks CHROME! The sound of the group is often coarse and features heavy elements of feedback and distortion and experimenting with mixing synthesized noise with rock instrumentation, marking them as part of the post punk movement have been cited as a forerunner of new wave & industrial music. Also performing is Chicago’s goth/power electronics gurus HIDE.
ALL SENSES PRESENTS: SELCTOR DUB NARCOTIC/CENTAUR NOIR/JUST LET GO
October 30th All Senses and RIBCO are teaming up to bring you K Records’ and Calvin Johnson’s project Select Dub Narcotic. Dub Narcotic & Mr. Johnson has teamed up with all kinds of bands & prolific artists over the years including Jon Spencer, Lois and also formed the indie super group The Halo Benders with Built To Spill’s Doug Martsch.
ALL SENSES PRESENTS: RYLEY WALKER & BILL MACKAY/SUNSHRINE/GABRIEL DOWIE