Where Total Strife Forever truly excels is in Doyle’s exemplary use of texture. It is an album that constantly surprises and leaves you on edge. Yet nothing sounds forced or laboured.
The record is a captivating and challenging insight into the mindset of an intelligent artist who is pushing himself further than ever before, taking his music in new and fascinating directions.
As usual there’s a lot of depth here and over time, more and more will be revealed. Glass Boys might not be as expansive as its predecessor, but it is no less impressive.
Angel Guts finds Stewart ploughing similar barren sonic terrain to the great albums he’s already produced, but with a slightly harsher, rawer feel than usual, which gives credence to the big claims his record label set out before it.
It’s not an easy listen and will send hipsters scurrying for their bobble hats and fake specs, but this is the sound of a band pushing themselves, challenging their audience and making something to be proud of.
The Voyager is less of an addition to her back catalogue than a summary of her work to date, dipping into different eras of Lewis, and not settling on any.
Like much of his best work, it’s a slow-burner of an album: at first listen, it sounds a pretty decent radio-friendly record, but it’s only on repeated plays that the full emotional scale which Adams is displaying becomes clear.
Whereas Harris has often used drones, fuzz, white noise and feedback to overwhelm the humanity her music, here she is exposed and unadorned.
This is deeply satisfying and enjoyable – perfect for those who prefer their summer soundtrack to have a bit of firepower.
It’s a truly absorbing listen, almost effortless. For a band that have been through so much turmoil, they convey so much beauty.
Primitive And Deadly, in part, represents an encapsulation of Earth’s discography, but more importantly it also sees the band moving on, entering a new phase and expanding their dimensions.
Shriek is a powerful reminder of how refreshing and affecting bands can be if they have the confidence, self-awareness and ambition to look beyond their usual horizons.
The Moon Rang Like A Bell is a triple-jump forwards for Hundred Waters. They’ve dislodged the suffocating tag of folktronica, and are dominating a sonic rivulet they can call their own – though they share similarities with other acts, they never feel derivative.
It follows closely in the footsteps of predecessor Kollaps Tradixionales but, taken as a whole, feels a louder, angrier and more intense record (impressive given some of the vertiginous climaxes on that album).
Lost in the internet void, Anderson muses on lonely superhighways, full of information and communication but presenting only disassociation and a drain on the soul. She nails these aspects as a modern disease, whilst putting in a quite breathtaking performance that thankfully offers a kind of life raft of humanity and compassion.
Sonically perfect and stunningly well-executed, this record is recommendable to a wide spectrum of rockers and punks