We’ve talked a bit in the past about my love/hate relationship with the post rock genre (and post metal, to be honest). The main problem stems from the extreme lack of innovation that has somehow infected this most innovative of genres. The staple delay-guitar-intro/buildup/crescendo-with-blastbeats formula seems all pervasive. However, I still adhere tightly to the genre as there are gems to be found within it that can’t be found anywhere else. And so, I give you Stearica.
Instead of focusing on the cinematic aspects of post-rock, Stearica are instead groove-powered, living off the energies created from a dynamic rhythm section. The post rock mostly comes in in the form of the guitars and the overall tendencies towards dreamy and hopeful themes. Head on over the jump for your first listen to these instrumental head-boppers.
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Head-boppers is the adjective I’m going to stick to here. ‘Halite’ is quite indicative of the rest of the album, Fertile: instead of delay infused guitars, a more rock-y, distorted sound was selected. As said above, the rhythm section presents the buildup here, from start to finish. The bass tone is some of the best I’ve heard and the play with the louder and quieter parts in the middle of the track is astounding and exciting.
The rest of the album is just as good. The first track, ‘Delta’, really gets you set up for the rest of the thing, being one of the most groovy tracks on the album. Other highlights include the more math-rock, And So I Watch You From Afar tinged ‘Siqlum’, which nonetheless disintegrates into a weird middle part, only to return with the album’s best riffs. One would also be remiss without mentioning the almost twelve minute long closer, ‘Shah Mat’ (check-mate), a slow building epic that presents Stearica at their dirtiest/sludgiest.
All in all, this band presents what hope still remains in the post rock genre. They show that there are still places to go, still sounds to experiment with and ideas to expound within the basic formula we have grown used to. The new album, Fertile, drops next week, on the 14th of April. Make sure to head over here to get it.