“Underneath It All” is a fine indication of what the Isolation Process are all about: moments of tranquil mediation interrupted and crushed by tumultuous post-metal. Eschewing tired build-ups and meandering passages in favour of verse/chorus structures, The Isolation Process balances melancholy and metallic power with the same poise as fellow Swedish bands like Khoma or Katatonia. Vocalist/guitarist Thomas Henriksson is the most immediate draw, and his towering clean vocal melodies, in direct contrast with the weight of his riffs, will undoubtedly bring Katatonia’s Jonas Renkse to mind. Saying that, Henriksson does have distinct inflections of his own, and throughout The Isolation Process – produced, recorded and mixed by Michael Nordström (Switch Opens, Lingua, Jesaiah) and mastered by Magnus Lindberg (Cult of Luna, Khoma) – he delivers a dynamically striking performance backed by the rock-solid rhythm section of Anders Carlström (bass) and Patrik Rydbrand (drums).
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Back when the Electric Grandmother was still based in my hometown, a weekly paper tried to review the album Pee Sells…But Who’s Buying?. The poor fool assigned the task just couldn’t do it. He called the title “oddly fitting” and that it was “a challenging listen in the sense that it’s hard to make it through the damn thing.”
Last spring the pair released “Carousel”, a 7-inch that yielded another pick for PopMatters’ Spring 2013 New Music Playlist, “Click”. Now, the band is preparing to drop a full album in January via Polyvinyl Records, with the title track “Forever” ready to preview. The song begins with action packed distortion worthy of a film score, before vocal and percussive layers make way for a melodic chorus through the creative clutter. Thoughtful lyrics bring an introspective vibe that allows for a bit of ironic shoe gazing, as Prudhomme sings “Thinking about myself too much I can see that/I don’t know what to be.”
Reuben and the Dark, a Canadian five-piece band led by Reuben Bullock, have played shows at CMJ, SXSW and other important festivals for up-and-coming artists in the past year. The group has yet to release more than one song, you will only find an official release of “Rolling Stone” online and we have it for you to stream below. The band is signed to Arts & Crafts and their debut was produced by Florence + The Machine drummer Chris Hayden and Stephen Kozmeniuk. They sound “darker” than many of their peers in the folk rock scene with their pained bluesy lyrics and four part vocal harmonies (at least from the show I saw). Reuben’s brother plays percussion and joined him at the front of the stage for a song but the band’s short set demonstrated a good bit of potential without them appearing immediately derivative. Check out “Rolling Stone” and some photos from Rockwood Music hall below.
The band‘s sound is so appealing that noted indie label, Graveface Records, signed them and is releasing their debut Swoon on December 3rd. “Talk to You” features hard-charging, distortion laden guitar, a killer melody and those delicious harmonies previously mentioned. Dott has a great future in front of them with immediate appeal to indie rock fans.
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