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It opens at night, in a graveyard presumably, the bone-rattling groans of the undead drifting in from every side over what might be a distant organ drone. Over the moans of the dying someone frantically tries to tune a radio, hoping against hope there are more survivors elsewhere. You know from the off you’re going somewhere dark, distant, and definitely not friendly. Then, after this cr ...

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REVIEWS

Skinwalker by Yoga
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8/10 Mike Staff review, 26 September 2012

It opens at night, in a graveyard presumably, the bone-rattling groans of the undead drifting in from every side over what might be a distant organ drone. Over the moans of the dying someone frantically tries to tune a radio, hoping against hope there are more survivors elsewhere. You know from the off you’re going somewhere dark, distant, and definitely not friendly.

Then, after this creeping, creaking DA intro, ‘Littlefoot’ brings in a synthscape that recalls Goblin and John Carpenter, with grating, blurred static screams spluttering all over the smooth, sinister drones, before settling on a looped melodic refrain before ‘The Necromancer’s Goblin Ha’’ gives us more gentle, creaking, slightly industrial dark ambience a la Eraserhead or maybe Decimus at times, which swells into an evil industrial thrum with buried Carpenter melodies while side-closer ‘Lemurian Dreams’ is all industrial hum and distant horror movie sounds.

There’s a pattern forming here and it involves spluttering, murky lo-fi industrial dark ambient noise and a big horror soundtrack influence for pieces which are strangely calming despite all their grinding, foggy paranoia, and in ‘Cosmic Safari’ there’s even a distant dubby bassline over which all the chirping indistinct tones are draped, while ‘Mothman’ sounds like a recording of a band rehearsing in an echo chamber being played back in an even bigger echo chamber.

From reading the press release I do get the impression that there’s times when they’re blasting out brutal metal but it’s so muted and lo-fi that it just melts into the haze until this point, and it’s only particularly prominent in closer ‘Emin and Anakim’ where it forms the clattering, muddy backbone for a watery piece of uplifting ambient drift with submarine-like synth pulses. It can be hard to grasp at times, but there’s a real dark ethereal beauty to this album, with its indistinct tones and patient melodies. Yoga are worth your time if you like your music dark and mysterious. Fans of Utech, Holidays Records, Denovali, etc, pay attention.




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