Rogue Records America 2014
Chillingly heavy prog from Windy City to blow one’s mind and camp in one’s soul.
It’s been an intriguing game for guitarists Austin Peters and Cody McCarty who debuted with “The Return Of Inertia” in 2011 and upgraded it the following year by calling singers and players from all the world over to add some flourish to the original album tracks. Since then, the line-up was upgraded, too, and “Terrapin” is a quartet’s effort of foraying into an arresting terrain where hefty riffs meet melody which hooks the listener once the seriousness of “Laughing With Such Abandon” offers its clanging oxymoron for exploration and lets go when “Achievement” underscores the triumphant result of such an adventure. In between, rhythmic shifts and dynamic range – expanded thanks to the herculean heroics from bassist Connor Grant and drummer Pedro Villegas – create a vertiginous mix of metal solidity and textural sensitivity.
Here’s an electronic layer to the throb of “Where Every Word Spoken, Speaks” with its sonic oasis proposing relaxation, while “Spirit” pours a heightened vibrancy into the instrumental swirl before riffs cut it to shreds. And though repetition outstays the welcome of “Stars In The Ocean,” epic “The Pace Of Glaciers” holds enough icy magnetism and sparse, echoing romantic touches to mesmerize a stranger in this strange land. That might be a genuine, chthonic depth of Chicago, its industrial side reflected in the pounding “Permanence” which turns recurrence into a riveting experience. Not for faint-hearted yet wondrous.