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Liturgy: The Ark Work *

Album Reviews:

Spin - "[It's] their first album that sounds like the work of four humans from diverse musical backgrounds playing together, letting Hunt-Hendrix's complex, holistic philosophy shape the album's progression without imposing limitations."

Pitchfork (Website) - "'Follow,' the album's first full track, begins with a chiming contrapuntal figure in the glockenspiels, led by pedal tones in the bass line. It has a fragile, otherworldly quality..."

Album Notes

With the artful strategies Liturgy implemented on 2011's wonderfully excessive, brainy Aesthethica, they simultaneously alienated the purist black metal audience and attracted new fans whose tastes ran more to indie rock than extreme music. The Ark Work liberates the band from most notions of black metal while retaining some of its key elements -- namely, the blastbeat drumming of Greg Fox and Hunter Hunt-Hendrix's own lightning-quick tremolo picking. The Ark Work utilizes an impressive if often questionable array of different instruments (bells, glockenspiels, chimes, chanted vocals) and textures to achieve a musical morass that interweaves metal, prog, indie, gothic rock, and even IDM. "Follow II" contains an atmospheric, minimal synth painted by low volume, silvery tremolo picking for the first two minutes. When the bassline enters, it thunders. Blastbeats and spiraling guitars reach for the margins, building a melodic intensity that eventually breaks free. "Queztalcoatl" has a spiky guitar vamp, stuttered vocals and glitchy, low-end electronic drums. It all moves toward a majestic bridge before turning back on itself as textures get exponentially multiplied. At over 11 minutes, "Reign Array" contains quick-shifting time signatures and noisy textural juxtapositions that grind against frenetic guitars and manic drumming. Its frenzied peaks erect a monolith to sonic annihilation that can be heard intermittently throughout the album. ~ Thom Jurek


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