Oh boy! New year, new shoegaze! Although I guess this is technically from last year, it doesn’t matter. You should listen to Greet Death. If you’re a music nerd, this is the band you wait for. New Hell is your personal modern masterpiece. It scratches a bunch of personal musical itches for me in a package that truly touched me in ways music rarely does these days. Call me a jaded cynic if you like, but I truly wish to be rarely moved by music. It means that when it happens now, it really matters. Thank you, New Hell, for reintroducing me to that.
There’s so much to this record. The depth of the sound is absolutely cavernous, if you’ll pardon the little pun there. But it’s so rich with influences and the direction they take the sounds in. It’s the incredible combination of The Smiths, Slowdive, Explosions in the Sky, emo punk, and just a dash of Pink Floyd and doom metal. You hear it all come together in ways that only add to the experience. With such a wide range of alternative influences, you might think it was unnecessarily overwhelming. But it’s really perfect. This band ain’t just a trio of try-hards. This combination of sounds just feels very natural.
What makes it for me is the production. I will always listen to a record with that much reverb, echo, and chorus on it. It makes everything feel so much heavier and deeper. It just feels like the sound of isolation and loneliness. That sounds makes everything connect with you. Just look at the song titles: “You’re Gonna Hate What You’ve Done”. “Do You Feel Nothing?” “New Hell”. Even without hearing the songs, you immediately connect to those feelings. There are no dead spots on the record. There are no songs to skip over. It’s a beautifully complete work of a record.
Plus, “Strain” sounds like what Pink Floyd would be doing in their prime in 2020. It’s awesome.