Rare Noise Records
CD ”â Available 26th September 2011 (via Cargo)
Been a lot of coverage of ”Ërock’ music here at LTW, serious discussion questioning why The Mercury Prize chooses to ignore the entire genre, and also more lighthearted fun from our kitchen guru Vegan Black Metal Chef ”â as such I thought I had better take look at rock, but I like my tunes a little darker than most so was intrigued by the first release from Obake ”â I had no knowledge of this band, a four piece consisting of Massimoo Pupillo (Bass), Eraldo Bernocchi (Guitars), Lorenzo Fornasari (Vocals/FX), and Bales Pandi (Drums) however a little research revealed that its members have variously been members of or worked with Zu, Faith No More, The Melvins, Merzbow, Bill Laswell, Justin Broadwick, and Thomas Fehlmann; some serious names in the sphere of cutting edge and experimental music.
Obake is essentially a meeting of musical minds, that therefore draws entirely from the previous experiences of each separate member, these diverse influences are absorbed into and in fact create Obake as a new and extremely powerful musical force; the result is the self titled album to be released by Rare Noise Records in late September – Obake; the name refers to a class of Yokai, Japanese mythical creatures which in strict translation means “shape shifter”Â but often is used to mean either “ghost”Â or “ghost of a deceased human”Â
Opening track ”ËHuman Genome Project’ instantly sets the tone; it’s dark, very dark ”â this is like being pummelled, the bass which plumbs deep ravines is initially to the fore, but gives way to a semi spoken guttural vocal ”â the pace is slow, we are well into the genres of both doom and drone metal here, however the treated multi layered guitar elevates the track to a living breathing entity; no let up with ”ËDog Star Entity’ though the perfect production allows elements of both ambient electronica, and noise to seep through.
Obake have created a sound that positively clings to you, you feel yourself being enveloped by wave upon wave of yet more darkness, then just when it gets too much the noise gives way to reveal a semi blues undercurrent that reaffirms you are listening to rock ”Ën’ roll ”â albeit very twisted rock ”Ën’ roll.
There are lighter moments, the instrumental ”ËLetters To Ghosts’ is almost ethereal in its composition, but its just there to lull you for when ”ËPonerology’ opens with its visceral guitar this is the sound a film director would use to accompany a scene of disembowelment, the backing vocals coming across like choir of satanic priests.
”ËThe Omega Point’ with its taut math-rock beats is perhaps Obake’s most accessible track, from within its darkness moments of beauty break through providing the listener with relief from the suffocation ”â that’s not a criticism; Obake have fused together very diverse genres of music, the result being an album that encaptures the sounds of extreme moments – birth, death, pain, elation ”â this is a sound of a beast experiencing these powerful feelings; a beast being dragged against its will from the depths of the abyss
Obake have produced an album that resonates, a truly captivating and at times unsettling listen that if you permit you will lose yourself within; in simple terms it’s a doom metal album, but this is so much more ambitious and even experimental which is down to the abilities of the musicians involved – if you have ever listened to Earth, Sunn O))), Popul Vuh or Coil then Obake are worthy of your attention”Â¦ Just don’t go on your own”Â¦
Tracklisting: 1. Human Genome Project 2. Dog Star Ritual 3. The End Of It All 4. Szechenyi 5. Letters To Ghosts 6. Ponerology 7. The Omega Point 8. Destruction Of The Tower 9. Endocrinal Pineal Gland 10. Grandmother Spider
Rare Noise have posted two tracks – available to stream from the label jukebox