For people who have lamented the fall of post metal countless of times, we seem to be writing about plenty of good stuff from that front. It’s probably just bias, as the mountains of repetitive post metal that we hear gets expunged from our perception in favor of the things we like. Whatever the case, it’s a pleasure when the genre clicks and boy does it click for Sarin. The somewhat veteran group, laying stake to 2012 as their year of genesis, just released D A R K E R L A K E S this week (hereby known as Lakes) and it is a celebration of everything post metal is still capable of in 2017. Its dark compositions work beautifully with the deep guitar and synth tones, reminding use of acts like Minsk, The Mire (RIP), Mouth of the Architect and many more.
Sarin’s power lies in the deeply resounding and not entirely traditional production and tone of its work. While the staples of post metal are certainly here, it seems as if Sarin chose a deeper and sleeker sound for their guitars and bass. Check out “Embers Circling Downwards” for example, a classic buildup track backed by a repeating piano line. Not how, where things would have been a bit more high pitched and abrasive in other bands, Sarin seem to stand above a gaping precipice, playing as if above a pitch black void. Something about their sound on this album is bottomless. This is backed by an inherent allergy to repetition, as variety intersects the album with fragmentary tracks, chilling lyrics from Rilke’s “Wheel of God” and powerful vocals mainly found on the opening two tracks.
These add to the abysmal feeling described above, yawning screams and cavernous echoes adorning the very tops of the massive compositions. Coupled with some of the brighter synth tones along the opening tracks, the contrast is immediately effective in creating a optimistic nihilism that’s immediately endearing. Lakes is simply the complete post metal package presented in a refreshing way. There’s nothing truly groundbreaking here but the overall mix stands way, way above the crowed to scream its unique message. It’s a distinct pleasure to hear a band playing this style in such an accomplished manner, able to dig into the roots of the genre and bring forth something wholly pleasing.