Time for another recommendation roundup. As has been the way with everything I do, this one is all over the place
“Tabula Rasa” is the latest album from post metallers set and setting (yes,all lowercase). I got into them back on their second album “A Vivid Memory” and like most cases, the first one you hear winds up being your favorite. And with no disrespect to this new album or the awesome third album “Reflectionless,” “A Vivid Memory” is still the high water mark.
However, “Tabula Rasa” is indeed a bit of a blank slate. The band seems to rebuild their sound a bit by using the muscular riffs and ambient passages that they are know for (set and setting, get it?) while also bringing in some of the heaviest moments they have ever recorded. Some really apeshit blast beats and over the top playing. While it’s cool to hear them try to push themselves, at times it sounds a little too much. Regardless, they are still one of my favorite bands in this genre along with Russian Circles, Tempel and even Kayo Dot at their heaviest.
Label: Pelagic Records
Release Date: 12 October 2018
Sanguine Hum are back! Their last album was a bit odd and that oddness continues with “Now We Have Power,” which indeed picks up where “Now We Have Light” left off. And I mean both lyrically and musically. If you liked them before, you will indeed love them now. The new album mixes hooky prog tracks with beautiful instrumentals. Basically it’s what this band does.
Soundwise, I think if Radiohead had actually WANTED to be prog and sound more like Floyd, they would be Sanguine Hum. Vocalist Joff Winks sounds more like Claudio Sanchez than Thom Yorke though…maybe even Anthony Green of Circa Survive? Hell, they could tour with all of those bands! “Now We Have Power” is whimsical yet glorious and another fine album by a talented band! Top tracks include: The View (both parts!), “Skydive,” “Bedhead,” and “A Tell Tale” (that’s some power there).
Label: Bad Elephant Music
Release Date: 12 October 2018
Steorrah return in full force after a three year hibernation with “The Altstadt Abyss.” This third album builds on the solid progressive death metal foundation already in place by adding more twists and turns and even more melody. Where Opeth got softer by adding more melody, Steorrah are still heavy as fuck and as unpredictable ever. What if Edge of Sanity jammed with Vulture Industries? Wonder no more.
What I love about Steorrah is they are always pushing their music further. They most certainly could just clone early Opeth and have a relatively easy time of it. But with “The Altstadt Abyss,” it’s clear they are evolving in a different direction. They experiment but always keep the song in mind. And yes they also find a way to pretty themselves up on the solo piano piece “Spheroid Nine.” But it’s tracks like the mighty title track that will keep this album in steady rotation for the foreseeable future!
Label: Fastball Music
Release Date: 16 November 2018