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The Silence: Hark the Silence

You'll need time and space to properly indulge yourself with Hark the Silence, but it can be transfixing.
The Silence
Hark the Silence
Drag City
2015-11-20

With their second release, the Silence (led by Ghost’s Masaki Batoh) offer a mix of heavy psych-rock and spacey meditative moments. While the latter, like “Ornament” are fine contemplations, the group’s heavy prog stands out. The three-part “Ancient Wind” comprises the first quarter of the album, building from a jazzy flute in a cavernous space through a swirling rush into a potent bit of Krautrock that recalls Can. The group’s flexibility and cohesion across styles, time signatures, and moods is impressive, with aggressive guitars creating their place alongside melodic saxophones and surprising banjos. If there’s a downside to the record, it’s that there might be two much of it. Some of the spacier moments linger a little too long, but even so the flow across the record (including a relatively pop cover of Damon and Naomi’s “Little Red Record Company”) works. You’ll need time and space to properly indulge yourself with Hark the Silence, but it can be transfixing.

RATING 8 / 10
PopMatters