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Monday, March 15, 2010

Nice FINAL / FEAR FALLS BURNING review from Aquarius

We're surprised it took this long for these two avant guitarists to join forces, Final, aka Justin Broadrick, aka the man behind Godflesh, Jesu, Grey Machine, Techno Animal etc, and Fear Falls Burning, aka Dirk Serries. In some ways both have a similar approach to the guitar, both able to sculpt sprawling expanses of layered drone music, transforming six strings into something much more, a sound generator capable of conjuring heaving, roiling dronescapes as well as hushed ambient drifts.
The opening track seems more influenced by later period Broadrick, as it sounds a lot like a washed out, minimalized Jesu track, a slow, warm, lugubrious riff, looped over and over, poppy and melodic, but slowed down enough that it becomes trancelike, with Serries (we assume) adding a sky full of tangled and layered high end contrails, adding a dark tension, and a mysterious beauty to the melancholic main riff, the whole thing wreathed in a gauzy dreamlike production.
The second track is more static, less riff based, and more wide open, a blackened landscape of rumbling low end string buzz, and singing high end skree, the skree muted so instead of being piercing, it's more smoldering, a glowing buzz, that pulses and throbs, the guitars constantly shifting, the layers overlapping and intertwining, gorgeous but still tense and dramatic, easily could have been extended to fill up a whole record and we definitely would not have complained.
The flipside begins with a smokey bit of folk flecked darkness, that definitely reminds us of groups like Earth or Barn Owl, a tiny bit of twang, a subtle choral vibe, warm and washed out, melancholy and minor key, the guitar unfurling skeletal melodies that blossom lazily, and then seem to fade into the background, just in time for more to take their place, a subtly active twangscape of muted buzz and almost country sounding drones, again, drifting ghostlike through a sepia toned haze.
The record closes with a gorgeous, thick bit of dronemusic, the background a sitar like buzz gives the track a definite raga like vibe, while in the foreground, another guitar moans, unleashing warped low end melodic tangles, delivered in slow motion, mimicking the sound of a horn almost, a muted bleat, but pulled into strange alien melodies, mirrored by the ever shifting, and highly melodic background buzz. This one definitely could have been stretched out forever, absolutely mesmerizing, the sort of drone you never ever want to end.
Gorgeous packaging, a black on black sleeve, with a very subtle die cut, revealing yet more black from the sleeve within. LIMITED TO 500 COPIES.

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