Borises aren’t all bad. Overlords of Japanese drone/doom/stoner psychedelic rock, Boris, are back with a double album. LφVE & EVφL sees the band continue to find new ways in which to cleave your mind apart. If you’re unfamiliar with Boris but like Sunn 0))), Sonic Youth et al, then you’ll love this. Also recommended for fans of Boris.
Vinyl Double LP £18.36 TMR634LP
Black vinyl 2LP on Third Man.
- Only 2 copies left
Limited Vinyl Double LP £24.99 TME634
Limited edition black & orange marble + black & blue marble vinyl 2LP on Third Man.
- Coloured vinyl
- Limited edition
Boris are responsible for one of my favourite album covers of all time. It's the pastiche of Nick Drake's 'Bryter Layter' album on 'Akuma no Uta' where Takeshi Ohtani is holding a double-necked electric guitar in place of an acoustic, with his chunky workmens boots off instead of soft suede. It's hard to imagine these heavy metal experimentalists listening to music like that, but then again incongruity is something they've mastered. This is often the case with new album 'LφVE & EVφL'.
The album opens surprisingly. There are some twinkly guitar notes and faint crashing drums like something from Explosions In The Sky or Godspeed You! Black Emporor. Yes there's an ominous burbling of guitar feedback but it feels subdued. This opening track has a distinctly post-rock feel to it. 'Uzume' is mired in waves of screeching feedback and growling but it feels somehow softened. It's not a full-frontal assault like some of their earlier work.
The album's centerpieces are the title tracks, 'LOVE' and 'EVOL', as well as album closer 'Shadow of Skull'. They are reminiscent of the Boris of yore in places, all cavernous drums and lumbering cast-iron guitar riffs, but with sections that feel gentler. Even the heavy sections in the sixteen minute 'EVOL' are exultant, with hands-aloft hollering and the kind of chord progression resolution Earth used to great effect on their most recent record.
What I enjoyed most about this album was the lightness of touch that Boris displayed on 'Away From You' and 'In the Pain (T)'. They are a little bit like ambient post-rock pieces showing why Boris' ability to develop as a group has been a reason for their enduring success. They are the Boris we all want to be reading about in the news (obligatory politics reference, haha lol 2 Borises).
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