Tuesday, 18 October 2016

INSTRUMENTAL INTERPRETATIONS Part VI: Kylver - "The Island"

By: Phil Weller

Album Type: EP
Date Released: 06/10/2016
Label: Independent



An evil and hypnotic concept album that will have your imagination racing.  ‘The Island’ is an encapsulating and fascinating release which heeds new reward upon repeat listens. It is the closest any metal act has gotten to lucid dreaming.

“The Island” CD//DD track listing:

01). The Great Storm Of 1703
02). Hy-Brasil
03).  Monolith
04). The Abyss
05). The Great Race


The Review:

Battered and buffeted by a tempestuous storm, a privateer ship begins to sink beneath imposing clouds and ravenous waves. Hired in 1703 to scout out a mysterious island which is believed to host a portal to another world, Kylver’s epic new concept album ‘The Island’, follows the ship’s sole survivor as he explores the alien landscapes of The Island, having washed up on its ominous shores, with the unnerving feeling of being followed a constant prickling in his senses.   

A picture, they say, can speak a thousand words. But here, through the musical imagery conjured from this band’s unique sound – one characterised by gigantean, whirling Hammond organ, droning bass and expressive, artisan guitar work – speaks far more than that. Though no words are spoken throughout, the cinematic experience which unfolds, as their progressively lavished doom metal twists and turns like a writhing beast, is powerfully moving.

The Great Storm of 1703’, at nearly fourteen minutes does more than just set the scene as it ducks and dives through dynamic peaks and troughs. From Opeth-meets-Mastodon inspired sections, to demented Deep Purple, surreal psychedelia and beyond, the canvases they create in your resolutely racing imagination are vast and vibrant. They work to create an incredibly immersive body of work that not only follows up their debut offering ‘The Mountain Ghost’, which helped secure the band a nomination at the Prog Magazine Awards earlier this year, it proves the band’s class and worth was not a one time only deal. And in such style too.  

Hy-Brasil’ is arguably the record’s most imposing and immediate song. It’s thick, gooey sludge tones are played out at a rapid tempo with mescaline tripping organ screams weaving in and out of guttural guitars. The drums carry the thunder of the opening act into a new setting to great effect, closer ‘The Great Race’ meanwhile an evil and hypnotic song, coming across like a perturbed Ghost (BC).

Beautiful and nuanced, their booming sound may replicate the footsteps of giants and ogres, but the intricacy of the guitar and keyboard playing helps make this an altogether more wholesome piece. This is heavy and threatening and elegant and intelligent. So much goes on across every song, with the band drawing graciously from such a feast of influences and techniques, it would take an age to work through this record’s aural treats and surprises in such a methodical way. Just be sure to know that ‘The Island is an encapsulating and fascinating release which heeds new reward upon repeat listens. It is the closest any metal act has gotten to lucid dreaming.

“The Island is available here
Band info: bandcamp || official

No comments: