Underworld, London, UK - 21/5
Written by: MGA on 26/09/2012 23:19:28
Remember a time before The Ocean dropped 50 of their members and got a new vocalist and played straight up sludge and post metal instead of progressive metal? I miss those times too.
Enter Bréag Naofa. Close your eyes long enough, and the Seattle based band will take you on a journey back to 2007 when The Ocean was still a collective and slabs of slowly expanding post metal was what they had to offer. Bréag Naofa’s debut self-titled album fills that void.
Made up of four tracks named solely by Roman Numerals, the record kicks off with a creepy sample of an artificially altered voice lowly speaking about God not showing up. And with that begins a ten minute track taking the usual post metal routes of heavy and quiet. With only four tracks, anyone with any knowledge of the genre going into this record wouldn't be surprised to find that no track comes in at less than seven minutes.
Whether Bréag Naofa is rewriting the book on post metal or even trying to think very far outside of the genre's typical experimental boundaries isn't even cause for question, however: the band is clearly just adopting the typical template and attempting to perform at a level that honors it.
And for the most part, the band succeeds. While the vocals can get a bit monotonous at times due to a lack of variety, some of the musical arrangements and progressions are extremely memorable. And let's face it: no one comes to this genre for the vocals. Vocals are a role to be filled and nothing more, since people are really coming for musical prowess and song-writing expertise.
And if you want to skip sifting through the four tracks in order to find the best moment on the entire record, look no further than at the 8:23 mark of the fourth track. The heavy riffage is refreshing, and its positioning with the slower riffs that are interjected between the passages of the heavy chugging is so well done, it's enough to legitimate the entire record.
Bréag Naofa isn't the second coming of The Ocean, but they're a nice alternative if you're seeking modern post metal.
Download: I, IV
For The Fans Of: The Ocean, ISIS, Rosetta
Release Date 14.02.2012