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- Gmaj7 by Chord
9/10 Mike Staff review, 06 June 2012
Okay, this one is some post-metal lads from the likes of Pelican and Sacred Cities, but they’re going a bit high art on you with this band. Chord’s concept is as gracefully simple and potentially dull as their name suggests. Each composition they make is based around exploring the possibilities of a single chord, shifting the emphasis between diads to make subtly flexing, throbbing, chuntering pieces of drone and ambience.
Actually, though, the simplicity and purity of the concept wins through, and this is a delightfully patient, relaxing, and (obviously) concordant piece of minimalism which falls broadly into the ambient, drone and neoclassical brackets without offending anyone. Unless those people are looking for some post-metal, ‘cause they won’t find it here.
It’s very much an album of two halves, with names as self-explanatory as the band’s moniker - ‘Stasis’ and ‘Kinesis’. On the first we’ve got flat, even drones, warm and middy to begin with, dark and bassy towards the end with a bit of dark ambient hiss and crackle. On the flip there’s gentle percussive tinkles and chunters around the chord, along with more active throbbing ambience and atmospheric free drumming for more of a mystical chunter-fest.
The fact that there’s always this one chord in common between all the rhythmic and harmonic shapes really keeps it from becoming confusing and every now and then they settle into a nice little groove, but as you’d expect from the title it keeps on moving forward in its own relaxing way, they’re just, you know, a bit more Vibracathedral and a bit less Stars of the Lid about it. Really cool stuff, though, a successful and enjoyable foray into the chin-stroking sphere from these rocky lads, and nice screenprinted sleeves too!
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