LP £21.99 IMPREC385
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CD £12.49 IMPREC385CD
CD on Important Records.
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Here’s a rather special addition to Aidan “Nadja” Baker’s already intimidating canon - a collaboration with Osaka’s progressive neoclassicists Vampillia which straddles their two worlds of minimal doom rock and orchestral grandeur. Opener ‘Aurora’ sets the scene powerfully with walls of apocalyptic bass fuzz crackling like an open fire over slow doomy drums, but with that injection of class which orchestral instruments provide driving it up into the stratosphere and giving it an epic horror movie edge. Quite breathtaking stuff.
Over the rest of the album, the trick is repeated with minor variations. There’s a nice extended quiet passage on ‘Anesthetic Depth’ and ‘Icelight’ is by far the longest number, taking up the entirety of the second side with its widescreen stoner doom which makes me think of Arctic expeditions, trudging forward with an icepick through the blinding snow. There’s some powerful distorted metallic vocals towards the end which remind me of Envy, there’s a middle section with some dense drones overlaid with high-pitched twiddling, and towards the close they introduce some Neil On Impression-ish piano tinkles to good effect. All in all a monumental effort, mixing the ambition of Mono with a degree of taste and restraint which drags it into artier and more highbrow territory. Super.
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