Because man can’t survive on metal alone, but indie rock is super boring and autotuned pop makes me want to kill myself, here’s a rundown of some recent/upcoming, Decibel-friendly metal-adjacent releases.
Tusmørke – Underjordisk Tusmørke (Termo)
A lot of the press releases and reviews of Underjordisk Tusmørke toss out terms like Krautrock and name check Can and Amon Duul II, and while there are trace elements of that, really that’s a fancy way of dancing around saying that Tusmørke basically sound like Satanic Jethro Tull. But that’s a good thing! Ian Anderson’s flute prog is awesome, and Satan is awesome, so really the only way they could screw it up would be to drop the ball on the songs. Luckily, they don’t. Creepy and catchy without being kitschy, these Norwegians wrote the soundtrack to the most bitchin’ solstice party ever. Plus you get their excellent debut EP tacked on the end, so there’s really no excuse not to share in their exultations to the Wicker Man.
Eternal Tapestry – A World Out Of Time (Thrill Jockey)
The Krautrock comparisons fit Eternal Tapestry much better, what with their offbeat, expansive jams. Elements of Hawkwind, Faust, and Neu! intermix in these awesome, head-spinning sojourns into the galaxy of 1970s sci-fi book covers (song titles courtesy of classic speculative fiction stories and books), but there are a few unexpected elements – most notably some obviously appropriated riffs, like the familiar melody of Seals and Crofts’ (or Type O Negative, depending on your preference) “Summer Breeze” reappropriated into “The Apocalypse Troll”’s warp tunnel. Grab A World Out Of Time before the copyright lawyers realize what’s going on and pull it from the shelves.
Majeure – Solar Maximum (Temporary Residence)
One of the two best halves of Zombi, AE Paterra makes homemade synthesizer epics the way your grandma used to. His second solo full-length doesn’t quite click in the way that its predecessor, Timespan, did – the shorter song lengths don’t let his compositions breathe as much as they want to. Still, he’s one of the three best people doing the John Carpenter/Tangerine Dream retro soundtrack thing right now (his partner Steve Moore and the unfortunately-named Perturbator are the others), and he wrestles a lot of emotion out of his cold machine. Plenty of cool keyboard goodness to bask in, especially now that the days are short and winter is coming.