Today we are premiering “Prayers,” a new track from the upcoming debut record by shoegazing post-metal act SOM, a supergroup of sorts comprised of three underrated figures who have had their hands in more than a few integral musical pots over the past decade-plus. Singer/guitarist/keyboardist Will Benoit was a member of the highly-regarded Boston band Constants, the original bassist for Junius and currently acts a touring member of Rosetta, as well as being the owner of Radar Studios and handling an array of production, engineering and mastering duties for bands like Caspian, Junius, A Film In Color and others. Bassist Justin Forrest has previously been in Adai and is a current touring member of both Caspian and Junius. Drummer Duncan Rich was a founding member of Constants and has been a representative for bands like If These Trees Could Talk and Junius in booking endeavors. They’ve now come together to bring a barrage of glorious frowns to listeners who love music to hurt by.
SOM captures the aesthetic of driving rain pouring down from the gloom overhead to meet fires bursting forth from within the earth; a joining of despair and fury that expands exponentially the presence and power of both and seizes listeners within a fearsome maelstrom that feels curiously comforting. It’s like sonic Stockholm Syndrome, but in a good way. SOM isn’t designed to make you feel happy, but their compositions are rife with the kinds of rugged-but-tranquilizing riffs that characterize the finest aural cultivations of both the post-metal and shoegaze subgenres. In doing so they, along with audio engineer Daryl Rabidoux (Drowningman, The Cancer Conspiracy), have crafted a record that is as hypnotic as it is heavy.
“Prayers,” like many of the songs that join it on The Fall, is first and foremost born out of a fierce and transfixing groove. Simple in presentation but powerful in execution, the methodical chug lain down by Forrest and Rich provide a perfect anchor around which Benoit can swirl layers of crackling synths and ethereal vocals. Although on the surface they sound quite different, SOM is in many ways like conceptual brethren of another Boston-area band, Astronoid; in a similar way that Astronoid brings a light into the typically dark realm of thrash metal, SOM lends an arresting silver lining to the downbeat, grey palettes of the doom-leaning soundscapes they exist within. Another way to describe “Prayers” is to imagine the meanest breakdowns to come out of the Deftones discography, then surround them with a pulsing haze of uniquely uplifting vocals that don’t necessarily brighten the mood as much as they add a bewitching counterpoint to the somber tones surrounding them, like a single ray of sunlight piercing an overcast sky.
The Fall releases in full on November 9th, and is available for pre-order on Bandcamp. Until then, please enjoy this exclusive premiere of “Prayers.”