Monday 18 February 2013

Light Bearer - Silver Tongue (Album Review)

Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 8/2/2013 
Label :   DIY
Silver Tongue, Tracklisting 
1) Beautiful is this Burden
2) Amalgam
3) Matriarch
4) Clarus
5) Aggressor & Usurper
6) Silver Tongue

Light bearer formed in 2010, an all encompassing art/music/narrative project, based around a story written by their vocalist Alex, who drew influence from the writings of Philip Pullman’s “His dark materials” trilogy, John Milton’s Paradise Lost, and the Book of Genesis, an allegorical tale in which to forward atheist/anti theist and radical left wing/ free thought ideologies.
The band play a mixture of melodic post hardcore, progressive metal, post rock and ambient atmospheric drone, The songs are structured specifically to follow the narrative and therefore peak and trough in equal measure, mixing screamed desperate vocals with sung passages.
The story is split into four main parts, collectively known as the “Æsahættr Tetralogy”, the first is Lapsus, and subsequently Silvertongue, Magisterium and finally Lattermost Sword. The narrative begins with the metaphorical casting out of the protagonist Lucifer, an angel so loyal and in love with god that he could not submit when asked to bow before humanity, personified as Adam. For this act he is banished from heaven. Here he questions the Allfather – an entity who claimed the universe as his own. In doing so he realises his master has lied, and vows to reach out from his desolation and become his namesake, amongst the other fallen angels – to pass on the torch of free will to all life in the multiple universes.
The story continues in Silvertongue, Magisterium and Lattermost Sword in which the torch is borne by the metaphorical Eve – the ancestor of humanity, her rejection of the will of the allfather, her role and the role of the prophesied second Eve. The establishment of the church and the eventual culmination with the forging of a weapon capable of turning the tide, and a war against the patriarchal god.
Alongside the four releases are planned EPs and split records, beginning with Beyond the Infinite, The Assembly of God – an elaboration of the introduction to the first album. A second narrative runs through records not included in the four main parts, these chronicle the uprising of those opposed to the false god, recorded in the “Celestium Apocrypha”. Those privy to the truth, of the natural formation of the universe and the roles assumed by the characters in the story are charged with forwarding the original word of Lucifer, they are in turn, light bearers. This begins with the “Book of Watchers”.
Line up
Matthew: Guitar, Piano, vocals
Gerfried: Bass, Vocals
Jamie: Guitar
Lee: Soundscapes, vocals
Joseph: Drums
Alex: Vocals, art, narrative

Light Bearer's second opus, Silver Tongue stands at a monolithic 80 minutes in length, while that may sound daunting to the average listener , any with previous knowledge of Light Bearer (through their debut “Lapsus” or 2 E.P’s) or frontman Alex CF’s previous group Fall of Efrafa will know what to expect.
The album serves as a continuation of the story started with the E.P’s and Lapsus, in layman’s terms a new take and metaphorical interpretation of some of the ideologies found in the  His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullmans, Paradise Lost by John Milton and the Divine Comedy by Dante.
What we have is here is an epic Sludge, Hardcore, avante-garde/post metal album, taking in influences from folk and classical music. It may sound confusing but imagine Neurosis, Godspeed You Black Emperor and Sludgey Hardcore in a blender and you might come close to the crushing sound of Light Bearer.
To explain the depth and breadth of this body of work in a short blog review would do it no justice, but from the opening lament of Beautiful Is This Burden through to the final one-two punch of the incredibly crushing Aggressor & Usurper and the cliffhanger/finale of Silver Tongue this will stand as one of  the year’s best hardcore/post-metal albums.
Go and immerse yourself in the sombre beauty of Light Bearer. And of course, to get a full sense of their ideologies and the full story of the planned quadrology of albums visit their official blog and listen through their brilliant discography from the beginning until this second full length.
Words by : Richard Powley
 Check the links for more info on the band. Record is available as name your price DD via bandcamp.  DLP (US pressing) via HALO OF FLIES RECORDS in April 2013.  DLP/CD (EU pressing) Via AlertaAntifacista/MomentOfCollapse April 2013