So, what’s the difference between Punk and Metal? There was a time when there was a clearer line between the two, but it’s softened. I tend to think it is a question of traditionalism. Punk is about at least trying to achieve something that steps out from the traditional succession. Which can be a good or bad thing, and sometimes the failure to do so is more interesting than the success.
So, that Tyranny is Tyranny could possibly be grouped with Metal, even “Post Metal” is a little bit misleading. The punk sense of exploration is intact. Is there a connection to the past? Absolutely- conventions abound- ties to Doom and atmospheric sludge abound, but ultimately this is still very precise, very moody and very moving post punk more so than metal- Does track Two “She Who Struggles” draw comparison to Neurosis? Yes. But, it also draws comparison to Tragedy, and to Oxbow. And it must be mentioned that the melodies are top notch- you can hum this, and not sound like you have problems with fine motor skills.
Now, supposedly this is about music, right? Ever notice how much writing about music centers on the lyrics? That’s only natural for a writer to do, and the lyrics are a moody, tense take on the emotional fallout of the political angles of certain mindsets within the power elites- so yes, write about the words- but listen to the music. Because that should be why you’re here. You’ll hear tunes that evoke everything from Viking funerals to industrial bullet presses. Russell and Jason circle each other like raptors- you’re never quite certain who they’ll claw- each other or the prey- it’s a satisfying interplay in that the guitars have complimentary sounds, but the melodic lines chase and subvert each other as frequently as they lock up. It’s a very natural sound- so long as you remember that nature is red in tooth and claw. ( If I have this right- Russell has the more buzzing electrical sound, whereas Jason has the more expansive twanging and dynamic parts- ) Either way, it sounds Epic in every way, including the National Geographic sense.
The Trumpet, though. M. Guy Ficcioto doesn’t just swing the bottom end, here- the melancholic, and yes, Doom filled trumpet lines fill in the melodic space with a soaring sense of lonely nostalgia- like the last remaining soldier in a war that even the generals have forgotten.
The precision, and the propulsion, of course, come from Mr. Brown’s dynamic, tense, jittery, and, yes, explosive drumming- it’s like Keith Moon on crystal meth- obsessive over each snare snap, and compulsively getting each cymbal splash to end precisely on the beat- which isn’t a very Keith Moon thing- but that’s my point, you have the Keith Moon sense of drama and dynamics married to an almost computer-like precision.
That’s a lot of dancing about architecture there, right? Here’s the point- musically, this is untouchable. I’ve got quite the backlog of stuff to talk about, and, musically, this is the best of the lot. It’s up there with mid 1990’s Neurosis, and late 2000’s Tragedy and late 1980’s Helmet for tight, massive sounding epic hard rock that presses ever forward, that won’t ever look back, even when forward is into the abyss. Conviction, and talent, and vision expressed in Melody, noise and beat.
So, of course, whatever else I talk about, whichever courses I correct, I want this front, center, paramount and prominent- excellence in music is the focus, always.